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Less than fired up

Creigh Deeds, who had, shall we say, a rather complex relationship with the Obama White House, tried at the end of his gubernatorial race to rekindle the president’s electoral magic. His final ad, called “Fired Up,” was designed to get viewers to imagine that Election Day this year was just as exciting as the Obama moment a year ago. Obama’s was the voice you heard, and quick cuts from ’08 created a sense of visual energy.

It doesn’t seem to have been enough, and one immediate lesson from these off-off-year elections is already clear: Democrats have a lot of work to do to bring Obama loyalists to the polls, particularly the young. Early exit polls suggest that the share of the electorate represented by voters under 30 will be cut roughly in half compared to 2008.

No one expects that young voters will be as excited by this year’s election (or by next year’s midterms) as they were by Obama’s own candidacy. But Democrats are more dependent on young voters than ever before – something I wrote about earlier this fall. Virginia should bring home to them the imperative of mobilizing the millennials with more than just a nice ad toward the end of a campaign.

You could tell all day that Democrats were nervous about these elections, because many in the party kept saying the results should not be over-read. The White House decided not to put its major spokespeople on television to discuss the returns this evening -- not likely a move it would have made if it anticipated a Democratic sweep.

But Obama loyalists will get some handy talking points from the exit polls. For one thing, substantial majorities of voters in both Virginia and New Jersey said that Obama was not a decisive factor in their decisions today. That will make it easier for the White House to say these contests were decided by local factors. And a majority of voters in both states gave Obama positive approval ratings. This will undermine efforts by the president’s foes to use words like “repudiation” in characterizing what these results tell us about popular attitudes toward Obama.

And before there were any exit polls or election returns to talk about, there was this nugget: Perhaps sensing a close race in New Jersey, conservative spokesmen on Fox News and elsewhere were issuing dire warnings about voter fraud, particularly in African American precincts. These sounded like preemptive excuses -- call them precuses -- in a race that, months ago, Republicans figured they would win, given Jon Corzine’s low approval ratings. Of course, one can imagine that their concerns about voter fraud will melt away if Republican Chris Christie pulls the race out in the end.

By E.J. Dionne  | November 3, 2009; 8:08 PM ET
Categories:  Dionne  | Tags:  E.J. Dionne  
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Next: Corzine's middle-voter problem

Comments

So basically Mr. Dionne, Obama needs to stay focused on the young and dumb crowd, who want alot but don't expect to work for it!

Posted by: cschotta1 | November 3, 2009 8:42 PM | Report abuse

Well this 26 year old voter went out to vote against Bob Robertson McDonnell. The Deeds campaign was a mess and made it easy for the angry far-right to win just by showing up. I imagine in 2012, once we've had a few years of Bob's "progress", Virginia will have turned blue once again.

The budget will be a mess, you'll still be sitting in traffic, taxes won't be any lower, education funds will be cut and those who aren't heterosexual, white, Christian males will be reminded they are truly second-class here in the Commonwealth. They are celebrating tonight on Triple K Road (in Carroll, VA) and at the "hanging tree" (same area).

I wouldn't be surprised if you see a lot of educated, high-income residents move across Potomac in the next couple years as Virginia devolves back to the days of Jim Crow and Blue Laws.

Posted by: BurtReynolds | November 3, 2009 8:44 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Dionne continues to confuse many of those who voted for Obama as being partisan Democrats, who will vote for just about any Democratic candidate because they voted for Obama once for president. In fact, some of those who voted for Obama have had second thoughts and will not vote for him again. There was an interesting article yesterday at "The New York Times" website about many former Obama supporters in Iowa having second thoughts and he has not even been president a year yet.

Posted by: Aprogressiveindependent | November 3, 2009 8:50 PM | Report abuse

Deeds is an idiot. He began the campaign trying to be a RIABN (Repukeliscum in all but name). He rejected Democratic positions. And then, amazingly, he found that Democrats, REAL ACTUAL DEMOCRATS, were not interested in his candidacy. What a BIG FU.CKING SHOCK!!! NOTTTT!!

When given the choice between a fake Repukeliscum and a real Repukeliscum, Repukeliscum voters vote for the real one, and Democratic voters stay home. This is not news, folks.

Posted by: snortz_the_cat | November 3, 2009 8:51 PM | Report abuse

They better ((NOT )) " melt away " ...
that is the problem with the REP. Party . They won't keep in mind the B.O. election was FILTHY with fraud ...

It seems to be the spirit that POSSESSES the new Administration.

Posted by: noHUCKABEEnoVOTE | November 3, 2009 8:54 PM | Report abuse

Burtreynolds is an idiot and a bitter liberal. Period end of sentence. Sorry you lost idiot boy as we did not allow your Accorn thug buddies to come in and sign up thousands of fraudulent voters such as they did in Minn. Why dont you be the first and move on over to progressive Montgomery County along with all the illegal immigrants and gang members. Yeah for Virginia Voters who have now sent a message to this Administration. Come on citizens of NJ. Vote that do nothing, tax raising idiot Governor of yours out of office. You deserve better. We did our part in VA, now do yours. Liberals Suck!!

Posted by: Cobra2 | November 3, 2009 9:18 PM | Report abuse

Oh, forgot to ask EJ, are you and Barnie Frank still dating? If so I got some bad news. He has not been faithful. Saw him out with another guy just last week.

Posted by: Cobra2 | November 3, 2009 9:24 PM | Report abuse

The morons return to the State House in VA. Launder those white sheets, cobra2. The crosses are being erected as we speak.

Posted by: snortz_the_cat | November 3, 2009 9:27 PM | Report abuse

No universal health care, no progressives come to vote.

Wake up, Democratic Party. It's almost too late to redeem yourself!

Posted by: JC505 | November 3, 2009 9:36 PM | Report abuse


But the GOP rejoicing about winning the cradle of racism back, their natural constituency? Methinks they doth rejoice too much!

Yes, please take Virginia back, and let's see some of that neo-con love practiced on the hapless citizens of this pitiful cracker state!

Posted by: JC505 | November 3, 2009 9:40 PM | Report abuse

Cobra2 we salute your eloquence. How can we resist the conservative cause you so nobly speak for.

Posted by: stephenbach | November 3, 2009 9:56 PM | Report abuse

Without ACORN to skew the vote, Democratic chances don't look good in 2010 and beyond.

Posted by: Ombudsman1 | November 3, 2009 9:58 PM | Report abuse

the oldies(the 65 and older) represent a time when the "myth" of the U.S. was still widely believed,produced by the greatest propaganda machine devised by man(conservatives)...those days are over..the U.S. became great due to the theft of half the north american continent and all the resources that went with it....not to mention killing the natives...enslaving a whole race and then bringing over unlimited manpower from Europe by promising them jobs and land in a seemingly unlimited westward expansion(all provided for with stolen land).Now the profits from the stolen booty is over...the corporation has found cheaper workers(third world economies)...and the working class here is diminishing quickly...what made amrica great(stealing and killing) is no longer acceptable...time for a new playbook.So to oldies...for the sake of we the living...please keep the republicans out of office...for your kids' sake.

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Posted by: huangzhixian106 | November 3, 2009 10:07 PM | Report abuse

So there is no voter fraud! No ACORN or the likes of ACORN?
Bull! Why don't you leave your desk and go to NJ andsee.
Go to Newark, Oranges, Paterson, HUDSON. Union.
Find it!

Posted by: jpalm32 | November 3, 2009 10:15 PM | Report abuse

I wouldn't be surprised if you see a lot of educated, high-income residents move across Potomac in the next couple years as Virginia devolves back to the days of Jim Crow and Blue Laws.

Posted by: BurtReynolds | November 3, 2009 8:44 PM

********************************************

Don't let the door bang you in the butt on your way out, Burt. We won't miss you. And, BTW, there are just as many educated, high-income residents who voted against the Democrats and are not at all upset by tonight's results. Of course, your insufferable liberal snobbery that believes that education and liberalism are inseparable won't allow you to understand that. Why is it that supposedly educated leftists are so bigoted when it comes to understanding the viewpoint of moderates and independents?

Posted by: hisroc | November 3, 2009 10:17 PM | Report abuse

"Of course, one can imagine that their concerns about voter fraud will melt away if Republican Chris Christie pulls the race out in the end."

Well, yes, Christie has won and it turns out that all the ACORN/SEIU punks were just wasting their time. That does not mean their crimes should go unpunished.

ACORN/SEIU is the biggest threat today to our continued democracy.

Posted by: thebump | November 3, 2009 10:23 PM | Report abuse

Maybe someone should poll those who stayed away from the polls to find out why.

Posted by: SarahBB | November 3, 2009 10:25 PM | Report abuse

The voters of Virginia did the nation a great service by repudiating Obama's Marxist agenda.

Posted by: tsapp77 | November 3, 2009 10:39 PM | Report abuse

The Oboobma era: Unpleasant, but mercifully brief.

Posted by: thebump | November 3, 2009 10:41 PM | Report abuse

Dionne still does not get it. He is a delusional Obama supporter that is so in love with him he forgets about the rest of America. This is why papers like the Washington Post and NYT have lost readers in droves. I can't begin to tell you how many people I know that voted for Obama are stunned at his policies. They bought a load of empty words and don't like him at all. Worse, the now see that Obama lied about CHANGE and HOPE.

Most people unlike Dionne don't like paying taxes, we don't like people telling us what to do, and we don't like wealth redistribution controlled by people like Obama, Reid, and Pelosi.

Obama and his staff mocked the tea party people. They should have took that as a warning.

This is a direct result of Obama's policies.

Posted by: asdf9876 | November 3, 2009 10:43 PM | Report abuse

Obama has been exposed...

Posted by: Phil6 | November 3, 2009 11:10 PM | Report abuse

A Clean Sweep for Conservative Republicans, that's a good thing, huh Dionne Dionne...Dionne.....Dionne......Damn it, stop crying....

Posted by: ekim53 | November 3, 2009 11:11 PM | Report abuse

Young voters are going to learn the hard way--the way the rest of us have--you affect an election whether you go to the polls or not.

Posted by: cmckeonjr | November 3, 2009 11:38 PM | Report abuse

OSAMAMAMA, mdon't look now but thhe end of your RACIST SOCIALISM is just THREE (3) YEARS AWAY. BYE BYE CURIOUS GEORGE AND YOU TOO MISSY.

Posted by: otisplumber | November 3, 2009 11:45 PM | Report abuse

Well, Mr. Dionne, I didn't waste my time reading your "apologia" for the blowout win for McDonnell and the great win for Christie in N. J. Nothing, but nothing, you could possibly try to spin about these two Dummycrat losses can stop my feeling better than I have since your "Messiah" was elected one year ago - tomorrow, as a matter of fact. Yahoo!

Posted by: marine2211 | November 3, 2009 11:50 PM | Report abuse

Yes cut all funding. Cut cut cut. Just don't raise my taxes.

Posted by: Atenora | November 3, 2009 11:52 PM | Report abuse

I cannot believe tonight's posters. What a bunch of name-calling, ignorant boobs.

It's sad that the state that gave us George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and James Madison has elected a graduate of Jerry Falwell's "university" as governor. What has the Commonwealth fallen to?

Posted by: chuckbarb23 | November 4, 2009 12:02 AM | Report abuse

As reality wins watch the ObamaCrats get tossed out in 2010...

America rejects democrat's socialism!

Posted by: georgedixon | November 4, 2009 12:14 AM | Report abuse

I hope these comments is published.

First, Democrats in congress will be making a mistake if they think the same movement that got Obama into office will be there next mid-term election. I am a young voter and i have decided to vote against Obama, despite working my heart out for his presidential campaign, if he failed to deliver Health Care with Public Option. I am not going to be sucker punch again for bunch of spineless Democrats.

All i asked for is affordable health care with option to buy it from non-profit group.

Posted by: gbuze007 | November 4, 2009 12:50 AM | Report abuse

This the first day of the rest of BO's repudiated, muslim, socialist racist political life. He's not going to enjoy his three year lame "duckyness". He will not be pleasant. He will step up his attacks on the American public and in turn lose more voters. Chant with me, 3 More Years!

Posted by: carlbatey | November 4, 2009 1:01 AM | Report abuse

Dionne, Obama won in 2008m not so much because of the energized Democrats, but because of the angry Independents. The Independents are still angry, but they are turning their anger towards Obama and the Democrats.

I just saw the premier of the new ABC TV drama V. Anna, and the aliens (the villains) seem to have been patterned after Obama and his Administration. They are even pushing for socialized health care.

Posted by: mike85 | November 4, 2009 1:13 AM | Report abuse

Excuse me, "mobilize"? If the Democrat's don't have policies that appeal to the voters, appeal even to their core supporters (like me) your can pretty much write off the Democrats. I voted Democrat, heck I campaigned for Obama and campaigned for the Democratic U.S. Senator that unseated my state's Republican incumbent. I worked for hundreds of hours, knocked on around 2000 doors. You want to know why? Because Obama and that new Democrat promised to put an end to the H1-B and L-1 visas, promised to reopen NAFTA and other trade agreements and end job outsourcing, promised to stay out of the cultural wars and not go anywhere near gun control. Well, they haven't kept ANY of those promises. We are outsourcing more jobs than ever, issuing more foreign guest worker visas than ever before, and we keep hearing squawks from the gun control lunatics like Holder. The Democrat's BLEW IT. They have been fighting the cultural wars, wasting time on health care "reform", not doing the job the were elected to do. They deserved to loose. Unless they want a blow out in 2010, they had better start addressing JOBS. Forget the fantasy of creating enough "green jobs" to employ the millions who have lost their jobs to "free trade". Get those jobs back by passing punitive taxes, trade tariff's, duties, and fees on goods and services that result from ANY job or factory outsourced in the past 10 years. Flat out end the H1-B and L-1 visas and ship those foreign workers home right now. We have more than enough U.S. citizens, displaced by these disastrous programs that need those jobs, want those jobs, and are more than qualified to do them. If Microsoft wants to move offshore, strip them of their trademarks, patents, copyrights, and trade privileges. The Constitution grants that power to Congress and the Founding Fathers advocated using that power in just this sort of situation. Add a $5 or $10 fee for every U.S. service call handled by an offshore call center. Add a 100% tariff onto foreign assembled computers. Heck, India and China both have such tariffs to protect their jobs. We should be emulating them. Either get with it Democrat's and focus on these core issues or simply forget it, because I certainly aren't going to vote for you, much less campaign for you. I expect a lot of my fellow former campaign workers feel exactly the same way.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | November 4, 2009 1:20 AM | Report abuse

You nailed it E.J.

The GOP will say this was a referendum on Obama, but is no such thing. It was older, more consercative voters attending the polls in greater numbers than the young. This stands to reason since most of the young voters have jobs. Older voters are mostly retired and have nothing better to do on a relatively insignificant election day.

If we are to have any national holidays at all, they should be election days. What better way to celebrate our democracy?

That said, the democrats are not mobilized. I don't want to see Obama play that partisan role the way Clinton and Bush did. That job is beneath the President, and it is counter productive when we need to bring our nation together. Besides, he has more important things to contend with right now.

So whose job is it? Howard Dean's. I love the guy, but he's been a bit quite these days. It's his job to keep up the partisan fight. Get to work Howard!!

Posted by: kurthunt | November 4, 2009 1:31 AM | Report abuse

The big take away is that a bad economy (in relation to jobs) endangers the incumbent party. This seems to have proved true in the three high profile races.

Another big take away is the turnout.

It looks like just about 40 percent of the state's registered voters bothered to register a vote. That's the lowest turnout percentage in several election cycles.

Posted by: JPRS | November 4, 2009 1:52 AM | Report abuse

As an African American Mr.Dionne, You seem to not get it, Your party lost and it will again, Why ? Because of people like you, You can't spin this one. Oh, It's Bush fault

Posted by: bernardyoung | November 4, 2009 2:28 AM | Report abuse

Why are so many of the Republican/conservative comments in this line of comments so mindlessly angry, childish and ugly? I would have thought the GOP's successes in these elections would have eased Republicans' fears for the future of their party. Apparently not.

Posted by: Iceman3 | November 4, 2009 2:31 AM | Report abuse

I cannot believe tonight's posters. What a bunch of name-calling, ignorant boobs.

It's sad that the state that gave us George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and James Madison has elected a graduate of Jerry Falwell's "university" as governor. What has the Commonwealth fallen to?

Posted by: chuckbarb23 | November 4, 2009 12:02 AM

******************************************
{buzzzzz}

Sorry, but McDonnell didn't attend Falwell's school in Lynchburg. He graduated from Pat Robertson's school in Virginia Beach. But, the fine distinctions, not to mention the facts, never stop the lefties from making ignorant assertions.

Thanks for playing.

Posted by: hisroc | November 4, 2009 2:33 AM | Report abuse

"Democrats have a lot of work to do to bring Obama loyalists to the polls"

Bzzzzt. Rong, my little villager. *Obama* has a lot of work to do to *have* any Obama loyalists to go to the polls. His defections from his own promises last fall regarding surveillance, FISA, rendition, military tribunals, etc. have scarcely gone unnoticed. This is especially unfortunate because the center, too, was ready for the anti-terror pendulum to swing back a bit.

Posted by: fzdybel | November 4, 2009 2:37 AM | Report abuse


Scary comments here, from both sides of the spectrum.

Verginia looks like Helmand or Kendahar with everyone is wishing to slit the other's throat.

Wind of change: You start name calling and end up with a good old civil war.

With so many fundies and happy-triggers, espicially down south, I won't be surprised if they start another bloody one.

Must be in the genes of this marvelous democracy.

Posted by: foxblues | November 4, 2009 2:38 AM | Report abuse

As an African American Mr.Dionne, You seem to not get it, Your party lost and it will again, Why ? Because of people like you, You can't spin this one. Oh, It's Bush fault

Posted by: bernardyoung | November 4, 2009 2:38 AM | Report abuse

The Washington Post's attempt to control Virginia politics has backfired. 0 for 3. That must be tough to swallow.

Posted by: d-35 | November 4, 2009 2:39 AM | Report abuse

Most Republicans are so misinformed and intolerant that they could not hide their distain, bigotry and hatred toward minorities and foreigners, even when their own livelihood, pensions, jobs, home equalties, and future have been squandered away by their own elected leaders. They are so gullible that they fail to see Obama is trying so hard to rebuild America both domestically and internationally. Americans are much worse off now than 30-40 years ago thanks to the unintelligent leaders, starting with the single-minded Ronald Reagan, culminated with the incurious mindless George. It is so sad to watch the decline and fall of the American Empire.

Posted by: mingftsai1 | November 4, 2009 2:42 AM | Report abuse

screw the one party circus-jerk.

it gets lonely having to wipe the swine flu from right hand to left each cycle.


achoo!

Posted by: forestbloggod | November 4, 2009 3:19 AM | Report abuse

This is just the start of the total repudiation of all the "progressive entitlements"(read free lunch),all you lazy liberal schmucks have hoped for all your non productive lives.
The liberal left have always played themselves as the poor victim of the right.This is because the liberal wants for themselves and others like them,what others who have worked,and planned,and sacrificed for have,by simply making the better off foot the bill through oppressive taxes.
This smoke and mirrors of Obama's change will be short lived.Less are buying into the obvious lies every day.
Unfortunately,you dems and Obama have gone too far,and scr**ed the pooch with all this overreaching ,and this will not last,or it will be reversed by the people you have fooled and aggravated when you are thrown out of power in one term-as always happens in almost all cases of a democratic presidency.
You libs always try to grab too much,and try to go too far,too fast for the mainly centrist non political majority of the country.Lefty don't fly except on the coasts.....You have this view that most people not only want the same diet of dog food you're willing to have,they will want to pay for these ill conceived programs,that will do them little real good,just for more freebies for the same captive victim do nothings the dems keep dependent on their entitlements as their base of power.
Oboombox better try to force through all the socialist lib-crud he can before next year....But you know what,once your clueless twit politicians are thrown out on their corrupt asses,it won't take much more than a couple of weeks to reverse all the damage you've done.Then you can go back to doing what you're best at,continuing your career of being whining,moaning losers-you ought to try going to work instead of trying to get the government to feed your every need or living off of your parents....

Posted by: bobbuild | November 4, 2009 4:01 AM | Report abuse

"substantial majorities of voters in both Virginia and New Jersey said that Obama was not a decisive factor in their decisions today"

Is that a good thing or a bad thing for Obama :-)

Maybe the loses would have been MORE devastating?

Posted by: cautious | November 4, 2009 5:23 AM | Report abuse

More republicans anywhere in government is a recipe for economic disaster.

Millions of jobs were lost during the Reagan/Bush Savings and Loan/home loan scandal(first one) and during the global economy push = outsourcing.

Then Bush/Quale came along.

Bush/Cheney lost 2 million in their first admin and 6 million during the second admin when the second home/loan scandal surfaced.

The USA is down about 20 million jobs. No new industry has been been developed to bring those jobs and their pay scales back = loss of national wealth.

State level elected officials tend to stay by the side of the repub white houses. A pattern which developed during Reagan/Bush/Gingrich and has stuck like glue.

When it comes to democrats voters need to stay on their backs to not be afraid of republicans. Republicans have a nasty history.

Posted by: rheckler2002 | November 4, 2009 5:23 AM | Report abuse

Obama cost Deeds any chance of winning the election - no wonder he had problems with the White House - Corzine had the same problems!

Posted by: Realist20 | November 4, 2009 5:24 AM | Report abuse

When it comes to democrats voters need to stay on their backs to not be afraid of republicans. Republicans have a nasty history.

The dollar may be trouble in fact it may be deemed worthless in many circles. Jobs jobs jobs is the central issue. Reagan/Bush began the big push of shoving jobs beyond our borders. Consequently millions upon millions lost jobs that have yet to be replaced.

FACE IT the USA needs 20 million new jobs with NEW INDUSTRY as the source.
USA citizens have got to say SCREW IT we don’t need bi-partianship WE NEED JOBS and WE NEED NEW INDUSTRY!

For the new administration it is about how Bush/Cheney wrecked the economy. It is about how Bush/Cheney and their worshippers being idiots trying to blame Obama for the economy After Bush/Cheney managed to put 8 million people out of work.

This is about the RINO party that took over the republican party and wrecking the good republican name. This RINO party is neither fiscally responsible nor socially responsible.
RINO's have taken over our city,state and federal governments. RINO's represent Reaganomics = Wreckanomics by way of tax favors, war and financial scandals.

Posted by: rheckler2002 | November 4, 2009 5:26 AM | Report abuse

Haha. You guys win but you just can't stop taking shots at anyone who doesn't agree with you, huh?

I am hardly a liberal. I am pro-gun. I am a fiscal conservative. I don't like the erosion of our civil liberties. I don't like bailouts and entitlement programs as much as some of you do.

I am a secularist though and do not agree with any aspect of the current far-right of the GOP's social agenda. So I will never vote for a candidate like McDonnell, Romney or Huckabee. McCain could have earned my vote, but when Palin was added, I knew they weren't taking people seriously. Stop trying to get me to vote for you because you go to church and think gay marriage is evil.

I also live in the real world, and saw through Bob's transportation "plan". One time shots in the arm of cash, at the expense of other areas of the budget won't solve our transportation problem. Face reality folks, sometimes you have to pay for things to get them. These same conservatives who complain about taxes, are also the first to complain about a pot hole and say VDOT isn't doing their job.

McDonnell plays the fiscal conservative card, but offers no plan for actually cutting spending, other than selling the ABC stores which cuts revenue and therefore spending. Unfortunately, some of the right-leaning moderates bought into this due to the lack of substance coming from the Deeds camp.

Posted by: BurtReynolds | November 4, 2009 5:45 AM | Report abuse

Cobra2, How dare you? Liberals suck? Well how about Conservatives? Conservatives ran this country into the ground for the last thirty years with three of the worst presidents in history. George W. Bush was the worst president in history, running up huge deficits while allowing poverty to worsen, New Orleans to drown, and young men and women to die needlessly in Iraq. Liberals believe in freedom and equality and justice. These used to be the ideals of some of the Conservatives. That ended with Reagan. How dare you open that foul and uneducated mouth of yours? If it were not for Liberals blacks would still be riding in the back of the bus. If it were not for Liberals old people would be dying in poverty. Liberals are the soul of this country. So keep that ignorant mouth of yours shut. We Liberals have had enough of your trash talk. I have had enough.

Posted by: nyrunner101 | November 4, 2009 6:45 AM | Report abuse

We need a rally in support of the President. We need a big rally to show that the angry right is not the majority and to show support for the President's policies. In 10 months these policies have brought the economy back from the precipice, have brought the US back into the world leadership position it used to have, and have brought fairness back to government policies. Who is going to organize such a rally?

Posted by: taxing | November 4, 2009 6:46 AM | Report abuse

"...substantial majorities of voters in both Virginia and New Jersey said that Obama was not a decisive factor in their decisions today. That will make it easier for the White House to say these contests were decided by local factors."

Yes, E.J. they can say that (but it's not entirely true). The exit polls also showed significant majorities opposed the current health care reform proposals, higher taxes, cap and trade, deficit spending and card check. Practically Obama's entire agenda was opposed by a majority of voters this time around. And Fox News had a focus group from Virginia on and even many of the Obama voters on hand opposed his policies.

I think it is clear what is going on here. There is a certain segment of the public that is loath to admit they don't like Mr. Obama, or are rejecting him personally, because it makes them feel "racist." And lets face it E.J. many of your colleagues in the lefty commentariat (not you - to your credit) have led that charge. So I wouldn't put too much stock in those personal popularity numbers if I were you.

Posted by: Lukey | November 4, 2009 7:01 AM | Report abuse

Fortunately for the future of America young people and minorities are fickle voters. If they weren't we would have to raise the voting age to 30 and repeal the l3th, l4th, and l5th amendments. I would repeal them anyway!

Posted by: ravitchn | November 4, 2009 7:45 AM | Report abuse

E.J. Dionne writes:Perhaps sensing a close race in New Jersey, conservative spokesmen on Fox News and elsewhere were issuing dire warnings about voter fraud, particularly in African American precincts. These sounded like preemptive excuses -- call them precuses -- in a race that, months ago, Republicans figured they would win, given Jon Corzine’s low approval ratings. Of course, one can imagine that their concerns about voter fraud will melt away if Republican Chris Christie pulls the race out in the end.

So I guess polling fraud can only be legitimate if it prevents a candidate of your liking to be elected. (Ex. Bush 2000 and 2004).

What a joke. Leave it to a liberal to throw around the race card or any other excuse when the results or issues don't fit their agenda. Or just unleash a mob of Black Panthers (which will be completely excused for bullying tactics).

Such irony since the democractic party now embraces such Marxist behavior with regularity. Not to mention with no consequences from the media. Something I assume Dionne and camp can teach our vulnerable kids a thing or two about.

Strange days indeed

Posted by: jmounadi | November 4, 2009 7:48 AM | Report abuse

E.J., WAKE UP YOU PUTZ


BUMBLERS & THUGS lose.

MESSIAH-enablers, Nov. 2, 2010.

MESSIAH retirement party, Nov. 6, 2012.

Posted by: russpoter | November 4, 2009 7:53 AM | Report abuse

I am an indepedent. I agree with 30-40% of Mr. Dionne's sentiments and I think he is a very intelligent analyst. However I do not consider him "Post partisan." Anyone who thinks Mr. Dionne is post partisan is delusional, and I am sure that does NOT include Mr. Dionne himself.

Posted by: JimJohnson2 | November 4, 2009 7:55 AM | Report abuse

Both Dees and Corzine were DOA for this election. A little context here helps-Deeds lost to McDonnell in a statewide race by about the same spread in the recent past. Virginia has been historically in favor of the out of power party for gubenatorial elections. Deeds, while not the strongest candidate, purposely distanced himself from Obama because polling info suggested his performance or lack thereof as President would be a negative factor. Independent and swing voters are very concerned about President Obama's inattention to detail on daily issues that effect their lives [jobs, affordable health care, crime, education, undocumented/illegal aliens a financial system that rewards incompetence and corruption, an illegitimacy birth rate of 50%, lack of a clear articulated vision of our objective in Afghanistan etc] Instead we get proposals for gun control, stem cell research, gay marriage, hate crime legislation, diversity propaganda. Corzine had a bad record as governor for effectiveness, in a state dominated by a Democratic Machine that attracted criminal indictments like a magnet with iron filings. Oh and he was a former Goldman-Sachs executive who amassed a fortune and spent it in pursuit or his US Sendate seat then the Governorship. Eventually, reverse peristalis set it with the electorate. The real message for Obama and the Dems is too concentrate on the bread and butter issues that matter to the independents and moderates of both parties. He will win reelection because the Republicans are in a self-destructive downward cycle, but in order to be effective for the American people he needs to recalibrate. If he would go to every SMSA that is remote from New York and Washington and interview people at large who are registered independents it would be a moment of clarity. Otherwise, his Presidency is doomed. We like Obama but his priorities and policies are not congruent with our interests. We are apalled at what the Republican Party has allowed itself to become. But affability versus effectiveness are two separate concepts.

Posted by: ALANROBINSON | November 4, 2009 7:58 AM | Report abuse

DJ: Are you on drugs or meds? Admit it! it is not about mobilizing, it is about peddling far left agenda that Americans don't like.

Posted by: Acquisano | November 4, 2009 8:06 AM | Report abuse

If you follow comments on the blogs, it shouldn't come as a surprise that the youth vote didn't turn out. (If you're young and you did vote this does not apply, but it doesn't change the whole either) Shoot, if you know anything about human nature it shouldn't be a surprise.

Whether it's Independents or the newly minted voters from the young to the disenfranchised, engagement needs to be nurtured and there needs to be a sense (if not hard evidence) that there will be an improvement somewhere in their lives and that their involvement brought a strong leadership. They fought as new voters and part of a movement and they needed some sense that yielded a new administration and the hope of a new future. The reality of the devastation Obama walked into by necessity only yielded more devastation in the form of unemployment and foreclosures. Unfair bailouts probably had to occur, but they in no way extracted a 'pound of flesh' the way they would have on the street. The administration refuses to show the same concern for the worker who's lost his job and for all those who have lost their homes. Where's the concern for the poor and the middle class slide to poor? Is it reality that Obama could do NOTHING for them, not even symbolic? The heat of that crisis has passed and reaching back for more funds doesn't appear possible. Disillusionment with 'change' is rampant in the streets once again whether because of events or Obama's decisions.

It's time to give people a concrete reason to hope again. It's time for some signs of confident leadership and it's time the people struggling at the bottom of this mess got some real lifelines. It's time to show that you can be pragmatic enough to keep the economic engines running while demanding fairness and compassion for those who have been forgotten and neglected. These folks will fight for a fighter. Premature and overused pragmatism isn't exactly what inspires people to vote.

Everyone says President Obama is a 'long term' kind of guy. Great, but if he's too focused on a sensible landscape plan to notice the 1st floor of the house is on fire then it might be a good time to look up.

Posted by: dogdiva | November 4, 2009 8:08 AM | Report abuse

Simply delicious wins. Next, in 2010, sweep out the Demoncrats to reverse the Welfare Spendathon, and then in 2012 rid the world stage of the clownish Great African Teleprompter Reader.

Posted by: tjhall1 | November 4, 2009 8:14 AM | Report abuse

To deny these losses are indicative of a serious mindset problem of the far left Often referred to as; "The Loony Left" and their attempts to some how magically sweep Abama's poor performance to date...

Posted by: chod1560equines | November 4, 2009 8:18 AM | Report abuse

Boohoohoo, there were no magical shepherds to lead the liberal sheeple to the polls. And now the big bad GOP wolves will devour you.

Two-party systems get what they deserve.

Posted by: SagebrushFederalist | November 4, 2009 8:41 AM | Report abuse

Now c'mon, Mr. Dionne, don't despair. The Republican Party is doomed, remember? Just go about and read some of your columns from last winter, you'll feel better.

Posted by: jd5024 | November 4, 2009 8:48 AM | Report abuse

How many people voted against Obama's hatchet man - Nancy Pelosi? I did. I'd also like to see some hard statistics to back-up the claim that Obama was not a factor in the vote. Both E.J. and ABC made the same claim without any hard evidence or stats.

Have a beer on me today E.J.!!!

Posted by: hz9604 | November 4, 2009 8:55 AM | Report abuse

"Contests serve as warning to Democrats," headlines the Washington Republican (opps, I mean Post), prejudice as always. The results actually served as a warning to Conservatives as the Democrats took the NY-23 House seat, a "safe" Republican seat for over 100 years.

Virginia pitted a classic Republican against a classic Democrat - corrupt vs stupid. Democrat Deeds talked about increasing taxes and could not articulate most of his positions. Stupid. Republican McDonnell pretended to be a moderate, burying his true beliefs. Then he told the big lie - I will build roads and cut taxes. Vintage Ronald Reagan - free stuff, free money - pure magic, except a governor cannot print money like the president. Corrupt.

In NJ voters simply threw a crook out of office, nothing more.

The race with national implications was for the NY-23 District House, a seat held by Republicans for over 100 years, now turns Democratic. Big conservative money from outside the state funded the Independent conservative and destroyed the Republican moderate, who withdrew. Big Conservatives from outside the state, notably led by Sarah Palin, campaigned for the loser.

Conservatives lost, moderate Republicans lost, and the Democrats won! That is the news of the day WP, even if your prejudices won't let you report it.

Posted by: chucky-el | November 4, 2009 9:10 AM | Report abuse

will the liberals who moved out of maryland to Virginia because of high taxation...
move back...
I think not and I believe more of these liberals will move to Virginia to inflict the damage they did to maryland to Virginia...

Posted by: DwightCollins | November 4, 2009 9:22 AM | Report abuse

Creigh Deeds was the worst major party political candidate in recent history. Sheila Johnson, unfortunately, was c-c-c-correct in her assessment of his lack of public speaking ability. Two words, if nothing else, sunk the Deeds boat (I know ships. This was no ship.) "Young Lady," should be permanently tattooed across his forehead, so that every time he looks in the mirror, he will realize what an idiot he was. Not being able to beat that Republican piece of reprobate junk was the most embarrassing loss the Dems could have. Oh, and then there's Tim Kaine. Let's get rid of him, Dems, before we lose the whole thing next year. He IS the sitting governor of Virginia. His replacement candidate lost by 18%!!! He made himself perfectly clear, YOUNG LADY!!! Now we have four more years of Virginia looking backwards. What a shame.

Posted by: wleldred | November 4, 2009 9:38 AM | Report abuse

Maine voters repealed a legislature imposed gay marriage law....

In all 31 states where people get to vote on the topic...gay "marriage" is rejected.

Folks know that homosexuality is as biologically normal as necrophillia or pedophillia.

Those who want homosexuals to be openly allowed in the military are anti-military more than pro homosexual.....

Democrats are on the wrong side of reality

Posted by: georgedixon1 | November 4, 2009 9:39 AM | Report abuse

I did not go to Polls first I was unable to get out of the office in NJ secondly I was not going to vote for Democratic Governor since as soon as they are elected they become 3/4 republicans. Just now that I view Obama 3/4 republican who's main job is to Please Maine Senator Olympia. I have not seen him fighting for any democratic agenda READY to COMPROMISE for 1 senator he will ditch all of us who spent time and treasure to support him. I admire 1 thing about republicans they always stand behind their Party and there leader even if it is George Bush. I will not vote for Obama I thought he was going to break from the past GOVT largesse but he same old same old what they say is different from they will do. Next time when I vote republican I will know that what the republican politician will say he will do even if that means screwing the country.

Posted by: khafeez1 | November 4, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

Fox News (sky-high ratings) should have been issuing dire warnings about vote fraud in New Jersey; the state is the most corrupt in the nation and has a large ACORN operation.

Posted by: geo82170 | November 4, 2009 9:52 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Dionne,

It would have been better stated to say that the democrats or any other party should "stay" mobilized. My boss, who voted for Deeds, pointed out to me that only 20% of registered voters in Virginia voted yesterday. He, like others I conversed with about the election yesterday, said neither Deeds or McDonnell excited them and considered who ever they voted for, the vote for the lesser evil.

Deeds ran a horrible campaign. His campaign strategy should be used to educated candidates on HOW NOT TO run a campaign as the Presidents campaign last year is used a lesson on HOW TO run a campaign.

Yeah, the elections yesterday meant nothing for the republicans or the democrats. Only the republicans, neo-conservatives, their supporters to include FOX "Noise", are the only ones making these referendum claims. That is all they have, they have nothing else.

O.k. Virginia, 4 years of a non-idea republican who has issues with working women in charge. God help us all!!!!!

Posted by: ajackson3 | November 4, 2009 9:56 AM | Report abuse

ajackson3, you are like the typical liberal. Cry about the results of a fair vote, but exclaim that it was the republicans who acted out of line for protesting the handing out of the Nobel to Obama when he hasn't even earned it.

Seems like it should be you that congratulates McDonnell for winning aomething and not having it handed to him. Sort of how you all complained that we should have been appreciative of a man who didn't even deserve the Nobel.

Get your priorites straight. Because if you can't, we (GOP) will. BUHAHAHAHAHA!

Posted by: jmounadi | November 4, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse

Democrats trying to make sure that they do not look bad in front of their constituents and not doing what is best for the nation. In the end they are the ones who will take Obama down.

Republicans, are you ready for another 8 Bush-like years? You will get it soon.

Posted by: pattr1 | November 4, 2009 10:25 AM | Report abuse

Wooha: I knew there was some good reason for wading thru these comments. Vox populi in spades. Thanks to all of you for enlightening me, mostly to you arse-hole idiots who have collectively more power than I do. Keep it up, you probably will prevail, more's the pity. God, this gets depressing.

Posted by: moran1 | November 4, 2009 10:45 AM | Report abuse

So lets take some inventory here. In VA the rest-stops along 95, 66, & 64 have been shuttered, the grass on the highway medians grow to an unnatural state, bridges crumble and tunnels leak, teachers have not seen a pay raise in two years, college tuition at state schools are up 66% over the past 10 years and if you don't have a home pc your out of luck cause its gonna cost you extra for the priviledge to stand in line at the DMV. This all occured under Democratic governers.

Along comes Old McDonell, is any of the above going to change? Folks it ain't!

Here's my wide eyed view for the next 4 years
More prisons-Bob is a law and order guy.
Less taxes- Bob thinks we are overtaxed in VA.
More guns- Bob has to gotta keep those prisons filled.
Free Enterprise-Bob gotta liberate those ABC stores to pay for education.
School Vouchers-Bob never really liked public schools anyway.
Aliens, illegal or otherwise-Bob doesn't like'em but who is gonna clean all that office space, cut the grass and build your house?
College Tuition- Bob knows college was never meant for the middle class, go find a job at one of those liberated ABC stores!

Posted by: TippyCanoe | November 4, 2009 10:45 AM | Report abuse

snortz_the_cat says,

"The morons return to the State House in VA. Launder those white sheets, cobra2. The crosses are being erected as we speak"

That's all the idiot liberals have left. No rational debate so let's just throw out the old Racist slogan and see if it sticks. Well guess what? It did not work. Do you know what I do for a living idiot boy/girl? I have become rich helping small minority firms gain a foot hold in the Government Contracting Arena. Black, Hispanics, and Asians you name it. Pretty good for a member of the KKK wouldn't you say? But don't worry, I'll continue to work hard which allows the Federal Government to confiscate my wealth and give it to welfare rats such as you. Liberals Suck!!

Posted by: Cobra2 | November 4, 2009 10:48 AM | Report abuse

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