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Where's the anti-incumbent rage in Tuesday's primary results?

Too much and too little will be made of tonight’s election results.

There has already been a lot of talk about the fierce anti-incumbent mood in the country. The evidence in Senate races is that Democrat Arlen Specter lost in Pennsylvania and Republican Bob Bennett lost in Utah. On the House side, Reps. Parker Griffith (R-Ala.) and Alan Mollohan (D-W.Va.) lost, and Tuesday Rep. Bob Inglis (R-S.C.) was forced into a runoff by Trey Gowdy. With close to 90 percent of the vote in, Gowdy was clobbering Inglis 43 percent to 26 percent, suggesting that Inglis is a goner.

But both Specter and Griffith were party switchers, and their new parties rejected them. Is that shocking? Mollahan faced a series of corruption stories that made him vulnerable. Candidates in such situations go down in every cycle. The Bennett and Inglis races are revealing, but not of a national trend. This is all about the Republican Party: In very red states -- they don’t get much redder than Utah and South Carolina -- it’s very hard for a conservative Republican to survive against a more conservative Republican. The anger everyone is talking about is in significant part anger in the GOP base. Could that produce higher turnout for the Republicans in the fall? Perhaps. But I don’t think primaries with relatively modest turnouts tell us a whole lot about November’s elections.

And the anti-incumbent story didn’t work out in Arkansas, where incumbent Democratic Sen. Blanche Lincoln beat Lt. Gov. Bill Halter.

I am starting to wonder if the real story -- the one we are making too little of -- is that the primaries are showing much more ideological change in the GOP than among Democrats.

Mollahan was beaten by a more conservative Democrat. Democrat Mark Critz, who won the special House election in Pennsylania a few weeks ago, ran as a conservative on pretty much everything except economics, where he was a populist. Perhaps Joe Sestak, who won the Senate primary in Pennsylvania, can be rated as being to Arlen Specter’s left -- Sestak did have netroots support -- but I still don’t think that race was about ideology. And Lincoln beat back a challenge from the left, though Halter himself was hardly a lefty.

The GOP, on the other hand, is moving steadily to the right. When we know more from out West later tonight, I suspect we’ll see two themes: right-wing victories, and wins by more moderate conservatives in California who were forced to move right to win primaries.

Like all efforts to read a lot into primaries, my own is subject to limitations. In Virginia tonight, the Republican Establishment seemed to fare well against the Tea Party. State Sen. Robert Hurt won the party’s nomination in the Fifth District to face Democratic Congressman Tom Perriello. In the 2nd District, Republican Scott Rigell will face incumbent Democrat Glenn Nye. Both are probably the party’s strongest candidates, though Hurt might be hobbled by an independent Tea Party run.

Still, the bottom line is that the Republicans are now a very homogeneous, conservative party. The Democrats remain a lot less liberal than the Republicans are conservative. If Republicans are to win in November, they need to persuade a significant chunk of moderates and independents -- both groups voted roughly 3-to-2 Democratic in 2006 and 2008 -- to switch sides. Maybe an angry mood will be enough to get that done. But Republicans are asking moderates to opt for candidates well to the right of where those moderates stand. And to win primaries, Establishment Republicans had to run farther to the right than they would have if they could have kept their focus on winning this fall.

By E.J. Dionne  | June 8, 2010; 11:49 PM ET
Categories:  Dionne  | Tags:  E.J. Dionne  
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Comments

If a person is an indie or a repub I'll vote for the,m. If a person is a democrat I will not. These last couple of months have shown that hope and change is Demo-speech for tax and spend and lie to tax and spend more.

Posted by: zendrell | June 9, 2010 12:42 AM | Report abuse

Dionne has been saying precisely the same thing for, oh, about the past 30 years.

What Dionne calls right wing, most people call common sense.

Posted by: thebump | June 9, 2010 12:46 AM | Report abuse

ever since democrats lost ted kennedy's senate seat to republicans, e.j.'s arguments have been utterly incoherent. his knows democrats have handed the taxpayers a crap-sandwhich between the stimulus, obamacare and refusing to enforce illegal immigration laws and would rather spew nonsense than deal with the collapse and failure of the legacy of liberalism for the past half century dating back to LBJ's great society.

Posted by: dummypants | June 9, 2010 12:53 AM | Report abuse

Where has Dionne been since the 1980's? The Republican party has become increasingly conservative since the 1960's, especially in the 1990's.

The Democratic party, long a party having many liberals and conservatives, has become predominantly a centrist party since the 1990's. Neither party represents most genuine progressives or independents.

Posted by: Aprogressiveindependent | June 9, 2010 12:54 AM | Report abuse

Fortunately the entire country is not made up of stupid white hicks who're easily lead by rich poseur white fat cats.

The right has moved so far right they're off the page. They're just going to lose.

Posted by: Nymous | June 9, 2010 1:07 AM | Report abuse

zendrell is one some other planet. Eight years of Bush SHOULD have taught you that Republican economic "reponsibility" means spend, spend, spend while also cutting taxes and pretending the money is going to come from somewhere else.

If you ran your personal finances like that, you'd be bankrupt.

Posted by: jamshark70 | June 9, 2010 1:12 AM | Report abuse

Dionne has been saying precisely the same thing for, oh, about the past 30 years.

What Dionne calls right wing, most people call common sense.

Posted by: thebump
............

Actually, what Dionne calls "right wing" are what America calls "right wingnuts".

Get with the program, son.

Posted by: binkynh | June 9, 2010 1:14 AM | Report abuse

How Republicans will win in november: Pin their opponent as a big spender, supporter of obamacare, cap and trade, and high taxes. That's how the last special election was won, a democrat pinned the republican as a pro spending, pro obamacare RINO.

Posted by: axxionx12 | June 9, 2010 1:25 AM | Report abuse

The GOP moving to the right...sounds like a winner for the GOP and for America.

The Tea Party is not a movement of 'wingnuts'. The moniker belongs to the left with collection of groups like Code Pink and Moveon.org. The Tea Party is full of regular Americans who are tired of their country being destroyed by 'tax, spend and borrow' progressives and the 'moderate left' politicians who help facilitate the bankruptcy of America.

Posted by: honorswar26 | June 9, 2010 5:42 AM | Report abuse

EJ, you are going to actually have to work for awhile now, sorry. Used to be able to just talk about R or D, but we have wised up to both the Washington scene and the media/newspaper scene - you have never really listened, you just talk. Well, listen up everybody, because America is done with business as usual! Now you are going to have to pay attention to the details on the candidates - I know, it's a bummer to have to actually do the work.

Posted by: dcjayhawk2 | June 9, 2010 6:10 AM | Report abuse

Blanche Lincoln won her primary but she had to move to the right to get it. Mr. Halter and all that left wing Union money couldn't win supporting the Obama agenda. The entire country is moving to the right Mr. Dionne. Sure you won't admit it but come November what will be the title of your article? Fraud at polls? The Obama agenda is a no longer a go with the voters. As it should be.

Posted by: bobbo2 | June 9, 2010 6:21 AM | Report abuse

With the last term of GOP administration increasingly seen by the right as communist, is the future of the right not the GOP but the Tea Party?

Posted by: walker1 | June 9, 2010 6:23 AM | Report abuse

E.J. - America is moving right.

Posted by: hz9604 | June 9, 2010 6:24 AM | Report abuse

Dionne simply adjusts his message to fit his template. Punditry has been moving into weather forecasting territory where if you are wrong in your predictions, you can always say there wasn't a 100% chance.

Posted by: Puller58 | June 9, 2010 6:27 AM | Report abuse

That's correct Dionne, we're going to save this country and move it in the correct direction towards an application of the founding principles in a modern civil society. We're not moving toward statist totalitarianism, like the DNC is running towards.

God Speed Nov. 2 2010. When we put the brakes on this Marxist agenda. Then after that it's going to be slow roll to Nov. 2012, when we take it back and re-institute a Constitutional Government, where the Declaration of Independence, in addition to the Constitution, will also be the law of the land. The states and the people will be given back their power and the federal government will be limited to its specifically enumerated powers.

Get ready for it. Please feel free to take up residency in China if you want your utopia that badly. They are still communists, you should be agreeable to that form of societal organization.

Posted by: 50Eagle | June 9, 2010 6:29 AM | Report abuse

Frankly, this country would be insane to put these staunchly conservative Republicans back in power. Today's so-called liberals look far more like yesterday's moderate Republicans. The modern GOP has gone off the right wing deep end, and that's no exaggeration. God help us if these people get voted into office.

Posted by: ggwalt | June 9, 2010 6:30 AM | Report abuse

Lot of anti-Democrats here counting their chickens before hatching. Seems to me the federal government haters have given Democrats a fighting chance in the Kentucky and Nevada Senate races.

Posted by: newageblues | June 9, 2010 6:52 AM | Report abuse

The GOP is the party of rich white people, and there aren't that many rich white people left. Even with the stupid poor white people who vote GOP and end up voting against their own best interests are an ever shrinking minority. Short of fraud I don't see any way the GOP returns to prominence the way they used to be, there just aren't that many of their constituents left. The Tea baggers are racist wingnuts that without the media coverage overkill will fade away, and or drag down the GOP with them.

Posted by: gr8fullted | June 9, 2010 7:17 AM | Report abuse

"If Republicans are to win in November, they need to persuade a significant chunk of moderates and independents -- both groups voted roughly 3-to-2 Democratic in 2006 and 2008 -- to switch sides."

Maybe Mr. Dionne hasn't been paying attention to the opinion polls, but I'd suggest that they already have...

Posted by: Lukey | June 9, 2010 7:20 AM | Report abuse

Here's my post from May 19 - turns out I was right:

"The "anti-incumbent" story is a total joke, a myth fabricated by the media to make things "more exciting." Here's what really happened - On the Democrat's side, Specter, who was never a Democrat until this year and is basically an opportunist, lost to a real Democrat; another Democrat won a special election; and Blanche Lincoln (an incumbent) won, although her opponent who is more progressive got some strong support. So, all this means that the Democrat's base is still strong with some of the base in favor of more progressive reforms. On the Republican's side, basically a Tea Party right-winger got selected over a moderate. That says that the Republican party is being strongly shifted further right by their far-right base. Together, these events suggest that the Democratic party is in good shape and the Republican party has a lot to worry about.

Casting this story as simply anti-incumbent makes no sense at all, but it's such an easy and controversial headline it's sure to generate sales."

Posted by: tedplaw | June 9, 2010 7:39 AM | Report abuse

The Tea Party is not a movement of 'wingnuts'. The moniker belongs to the left with collection of groups like Code Pink and Moveon.org. The Tea Party is full of regular Americans who are tired of their country being destroyed by 'tax, spend and borrow' progressives and the 'moderate left' politicians who help facilitate the bankruptcy of America.

Posted by: honorswar26

You made that up.

The Country's financial system was destroyed by ten years of Republicanism in the Congress and the White House who cut taxes and spent and borrowed HUGE amounts of money. TRILLION$$$$$

and you know it.


Posted by: vigor | June 9, 2010 7:49 AM | Report abuse

What Dionne calls right wing, most people call common sense.
Posted by: thebump
----

that would explain why they are in the minority.....

Posted by: tfspa | June 9, 2010 7:58 AM | Report abuse

The reason this country is so deep in debt is because Republicans (especially Reagan and Bush Jr.) spent like crazy and simply borrow the money to pay for it. They don;t have the guts to actually ask anyone for the money,in the form of taxes, that they plan to funnel off to their corporate cronies.
The tea party is made up of Birthers and gun nuts (Obama is going to ban all guns!!), libertarians who dont want the government to even exist and seniors who want the goverment to "keep their hands off of Medicare." It's a looney bin, and there's no "common sense" to it.

Posted by: tedplaw | June 9, 2010 8:05 AM | Report abuse

Tuesday's results are another reason why the MSM is not taken seriously. How many pundits got it wrong and seriously wrong. Where was the anti-Washington Pres. Obama backlash; etc. Now all the pundits are saying "night of the women" and include Lincoln in the "women who won" - these same pundits had predicted she would loose and don't seem to realize we remember their predictions. Women who won had money - money usually trumps.

Posted by: jlr6111 | June 9, 2010 8:07 AM | Report abuse

This is perplexing: how do I explain to my students (Candidates for the Brazilian Diplomatic Corps)what they are reading about in US politics? President Obama and his administration is being heavily criticized, villified, for taking the necessary steps to save the US and the world from economic disaster. He fought long and hard, against stiff resistance from the industry, to offer health care to all american citizens. He attempted reconciliation and dialogue with the middle east, but has been pro-active and effective in combating al queda and the Taliban.

Yet, There is a large segment of Americans that want not only to return to power the party that sunk the US into two wars, while fostering conditions that led to financial collapse. Worse, they want a version of that party that is even more extreme then Bush.

It's difficult to rationalize this phenomenom without mentioning that this segment is primarily, white, rural and has traditionally championed the interests of big business, and global military intervention.

Posted by: interactidiomas | June 9, 2010 8:12 AM | Report abuse

The GOP is a cultist party. They are a sloganeering empty shell that manufactures facts in order to divert attention from real problems so that they can continue to do the work of corporations. It's sad that there are so many people who are unable to see that. As soon as they obtain power they will cut the taxes of the rich, give the masses $100 per head in tax breaks, increase the deficit, gut all regulations, and throw the religious nuts a few bones. All of this is, by now, routine for this crowd. It requires willful ignorance to refute it.

BTW, I don't believe they'll win the house or senate in the fall.

Posted by: rramos01 | June 9, 2010 8:15 AM | Report abuse

"These last couple of months have shown that hope and change is Demo-speech for tax and spend and lie to tax and spend more."

Really?

Name one tax increase Obama has pushed for.

Yes, in years past the Dems never saw a tax increase they didn't love, but starting with Bill Clinton they realized the political folly of that.

The reality is Obama's tax plan actually decreases taxes for the considerable majority of Americans.

As for the 'spend' part, on that count you have some truth in your argument.

But the 'spend' is coming equally from both sides.

For instance, how many trillions were spent in Iraq?

And when will either side talk about reforming Social Security? We are going to have to do it - the only question is when.

And farm subsidies - both sides support these.

Posted by: Hillman1 | June 9, 2010 8:17 AM | Report abuse

The only Dems who win are the ones running in the opposite direction from Obama.

People are fed up with his disasterous agenda and incompetence.

Posted by: drjcarlucci | June 9, 2010 8:27 AM | Report abuse

Under democrat and public service union control California became what democrats want to do to America........

Democrats are antiSemitic, anti-business and basically antiAmerican......

If you support liberal Democrat antiSemitism and Socialism, vote for a Democrat next Fall

If it disgusts you, then don't.....

Posted by: georgedixon | June 9, 2010 8:32 AM | Report abuse

The question was asked: "For instance, how many trillions were spent in Iraq?"

Far fewer than have been spent in inner cities in America..........but at least Iraq has improved.

Posted by: georgedixon | June 9, 2010 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Given that Republican ideology has proven time and again that it is destructive of the economy and provides nothing of more than illusory value to the mass of working American, I figured that after Cheney-Bushism caused the utter destruction (again) of the economy in September 2008 and that everyone with open eyes could see only the Fed and the Congress and, later, the stimulus package prevented a new depression that, finally, the Republican Party would reassess and move toward some moderation and real conservatism, coserving our economy and environment and our soical welfare and our national instutions. But, no. Like lemmings, they move deeper into the protection of the established players and taxpayer supported profits and money being "free speech." They support disposible labor, no minimum wages, massive illegal employment, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the most extreme demogogs in the infotainment media.

I don't know what will happen in November, but I know that the Republican Party is the road to Hell.

Posted by: pointpetre | June 9, 2010 9:04 AM | Report abuse

EJ is spot on. The election of Obama drove the right wing loons over the edge, and the result is the teabaggers- the most ignorant, stupid, paranoid, and easily-manipulated group of fools in America.

This bodes well for Democrats, because most Americans see the right wing extremists for what they are: crazy.

We've listened to them get nuttier and nuttier over the past year: Kenya! Muslim! Socialism! Death panels! Pull the plug on grandma! FEMA concentration camps! Census conspiracy!

Any thinking adult would be ashamed to embrace such lunacy, but we're not talking about thinking adults. We're talking about bigoted old cranks whose idea of a smart leader is a lying backwater dimwit from Alaska who quit half-way through her term as governor for reasons nobody can figure out (Sarah "the quitter who couldn't finish dinner" Palin), a guy who opposes the Civil Rights Act (Rand Paul), Joe the Plumber (not even a licensed plumber), and various fat AM hate-radio oxycontin-addicted gasbags, birthers, white racists, and Fox "news" lemmings.

They had their own way for eight years. They lied us into a war, put the Iraq war and the Afghanistan wars on a Chinese credit card, gutted our regulatory agencies, ran government like an ATM for the republican party, and caused the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression. America doesn't want them back in power.

Posted by: losthorizon10 | June 9, 2010 9:13 AM | Report abuse

"Fortunately the entire country is not made up of stupid white hicks who're easily lead by rich poseur white fat cats.
The right has moved so far right they're off the page. They're just going to lose.
Posted by: Nymous | June 9, 2010 1:07 AM | Report abuse"

written like a true black racist...

Posted by: DwightCollins | June 9, 2010 9:15 AM | Report abuse

And Independants are going to have to be willing to vote for far, far left Democrats, who are now spending our country into bankruptsy, adding Trillions to the debt, and passing a Trillion dollar new entitlement program. The voters will decide who is really listening to the majority of Americans, and whether they want to still back up an out of control and incompetant idealog and Chicago style politics POTUS.

Posted by: joanz3 | June 9, 2010 9:18 AM | Report abuse

Dionne couldn't possibly be more out of touch with Americans and America.
Why in the world does he even get a column in the Washington Post?

Dionne lives in the bygone age of the sixties like the rest of the left-winhg liberal Democrats.
If you're not as left as Castro or Mao then for Dionne you are clearly on "the right"-whatever that means.

The Republicans are moving to the right?
Laughable.

That's the center Dionne and it has been since the time of Reagan.
Get used to it.

Posted by: BruceMcDougall | June 9, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Republicans are enjoying great victories because they have captured the center and convinced people that they offer competent, commonsense leadership.

Americans hate liberal loonies, losers, and liars, who are destroying our nation and blaming others.

Expect the massive rejection of the socialist agenda of Obama, Pelosi, and Reid to continue in November and 2012.

Posted by: Jerzy | June 9, 2010 9:25 AM | Report abuse

Independents have to decide if they want to vote for a far, far left democratic agenda, with unlimited spending, massive debt, and expensive new entitlements, along with an idealog, Chicago style politics POTUS out of touch with the majority of Americans on all agenda items.
The Unions are out control, as is the democratic congress. It is time for a change.

Posted by: joanz3 | June 9, 2010 9:27 AM | Report abuse

Yes EJ, your assertion is correct: The Republicans are shifting a bit to the right. But then, unluckily for Democrats, so is the rest of the country.

Posted by: bryanmcoleman | June 9, 2010 9:29 AM | Report abuse

It appears as if the GOP is being driven further to the right, and to further alienation from Mainstream America. It appears that the Tea Bagger Movement has captured the Republican Core, much the same as the religious right did for the past couple decades.

My bet is on Sarah Palin rising to head a new Third Party around the Tea Baggers, especially if they achieve some notable victories this fall.

And that's fine with me. Further marginalization of the ignorant in the American politic is just fine with me.

Posted by: HillRat | June 9, 2010 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Yes EJ, your assertion is correct: The Republicans are shifting a bit to the right. But then, unluckily for Democrats, so is the rest of the country.

Posted by: bryanmcoleman
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-===-=--=

Darn you, I was just about to tell him the same thing. Maybe he's in denial.

Posted by: ZZim | June 9, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

The public has to decide if they want to bring back an even more conservative republican party than what we had in Bush. What a nightmare. The party who brought us the worse recession since the Great Depression wants to rule again but this time with a bunch of ultra right wing candidates? Wow. Do I live in the United States of America or the United States of Amnesia?

Posted by: goldpitt | June 9, 2010 9:49 AM | Report abuse

dionne's analysis appears to be right on target. this so-called "anti-incumbency" fever that other journalists and pundits speak to is just a cover for their discomfiture of having an african american as president. it is fear that the american way of life (prior to the 1960s)will be compromised by someone that does not look like rush limbaugh's father.

the truth of the matter is that the republican party will become a regional party of the south with some portions of the midwest aligning themselves along similar lines. the balance will be tipped by the millions of hispanics who will vote democrat because of the arizona's allegiance to tea party politics of "them vs us". this will be the downfall of america, the divisiveness that's being encouraged just for petty partisan politics.

note: is anyone turned off by the politicians who use millions of their own money just to win primaries? what does that say about the financial payoffs involved in being a congressman? does that mean that through lobbying and politicking, they'll get a return on their investment? fishy....

Posted by: glenknowles | June 9, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

Yep! Teabaggers keep moving the GOP further and further to the farrrrrr right....privatizing Social Security, abolishing the EPA, raising eligibility age for Medicare and Social Security, etc.

While no one liked Bush forcing taxpayers to bail out the Banksters as a consequence of Bush DEregulating Wall Street, the alternative was much WORSE. Without TARP, many more banks would have failed and the FDIC wouldn't have been able to guarantee our bank deposits under $250K.
And yet - Teabaggers oppose Congress critters who voted for TARP because it decimated Republicans ideology of the "free market."
iow - Teabaggers care more about ideology than protecting their own money.
C.R.A.Z.Y.

Posted by: angie12106 | June 9, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

gr8fullted wrote,

"Short of fraud I don't see any way the GOP returns to prominence the way they used to be...."

&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

They just stole two presidential elections. One in 2000 and the other in 2004.

Think they wouldn't do it again?

Posted by: francis4 | June 9, 2010 10:01 AM | Report abuse

zendrell wrote>>>hope and change is Demo-speech for tax and spend and lie to tax and spend more.

Federal taxes are the LOWEST in 60 years due to the Stimulus that CUT TAXES for the middle class and small businesses.
Teabaggers should be protesting taxes on the State and County levels where taxes have been raised to compensate for lack of revenue from Bush's Great Recession.

Bush & Republicans RAISED TAXES on the middle class by giving 2 UNFUNDED tax cuts to Billionaires resulting in less revenue to the government resulting in less revenue to States and Counties which RAISED TAXES.

Posted by: angie12106 | June 9, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

We now have solid proof that a Nut Case is not determined by gender and that the GOP has gone to the far right of stupid. Drill Baby Drill. You Betcha. Maybe they will appoint Dick Cheney to oversee the EPA again, since that has worked out so good. You Betcha!

Posted by: fare777 | June 9, 2010 10:11 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: bobbo2: "Mr. Halter and all that left wing Union money couldn't win supporting the Obama agenda."
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Hey bobo2stupid for words, President Obama supported Lincoln.

To those right-wing idiots who assume this country is moving right--forget it, we are not going backwards now by voting for the GOP of hate and division, or palin/beck/fauxhate racist t-baggers.

Posted by: dematheart | June 9, 2010 10:15 AM | Report abuse

angie12106 wrote,

"Yep! Teabaggers keep moving the GOP further and further to the farrrrrr right....privatizing Social Security, abolishing the EPA, raising eligibility age for Medicare and Social Security, etc."
**************************************************************************************

Wait until you see what President Obama and the Congress have in store for you and the rest of the country when the president's Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform gives its report. And wait until you see the tax increase.

Reagan did the same thing and the middle class, not the rich, received the largest tax increase in history.


Posted by: francis4 | June 9, 2010 10:15 AM | Report abuse

It is clear what the left has got us:

1. Largest deficits ever
2. A health bill that grows more unpopular every day and is full of special deals and backroom dealmaking.
3. Inability to handle a environmental disaster
4. fights with our friends (Israel)
5. More powerful enemies who grow stronger and add more powerful weapons every day (Iran and North Korea)
6. Broken promises- remember closing Gitmo or bipartisanship or the most moral congress ever?

Why would sane people vote to keep any of these jokers?

Posted by: sarno | June 9, 2010 10:21 AM | Report abuse

Any day the thug labor unions can be defeated (Halter in Arkansas) is a good day. Cheers!

Posted by: RossOdom | June 9, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

So, half the people here say the country is fed up with Obama's socialist, liberal agenda. The other half say people still remember how bad it was when Bush was president and that people aren't going back to that in November.

I think that no one knows how these elections are going to turn out, and anyone who says they do only watches and reads the news that they agree with, reinforcing whatever beliefs they have.

Posted by: WJH19731 | June 9, 2010 10:29 AM | Report abuse

honorswar26, you are right, the tea party is not made up of "wing nuts."

If only it were that benign.

The true believers are dedicated followers of Ayn Rand's "Rational Self Interest." If you spend any amount of time reading and reviewing Rand - as I am sorry to say, I was required to do - you realize that here theories are pretzel logic that is heavily dependent upon magical realism to succeed.

The level of selfishness involved - altruism, a bedrock of our view of ourselves as a nation - is evil and one should one only act on another's behalf if it is economically beneficial - is more extreme than even that found in Ronald Reagan's "Greed is Good" decade.

The tea party hangers-on are racists, hard-core conspiratory theorists and survivalists.

The tea party is to 2010 as the Know Nothing party was to the 1850's.

More importantly, the tea party is a minority of a minority (the so-called "radical right"). Polls are already showing their 15 minutes of fame are fading. Tic-toc...

Posted by: TOMMYBASEBALL | June 9, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

The right on this board have conveniently forgotten where Bush/Cheney took us and that was nearly off a cliff. The far right were seething when Obama won and have been on a rampage ever since. The regular Republicans in office are terrified of them. The far right is wrecking the GOP and given a chance, will wreck ths country.

Posted by: creatia52 | June 9, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

"A primarily strong night for women"

...Wow the Republican party is re-generating itself with strong woman.

Woman that have been CEO's and know why jobs come and why they go.

The big losers last night were:

1. America's left-wing.....

2. America's mob-run unions

3. and the Gestapo division of the Democrat Party....MoveOn.org

Lincoln will lose big to a Republican as America marches to the "right" which is where we need to go.

The Democrats will continue to field their old politicians like Brown and Boxer in CA.

Fiscal conservatives are being elected throughout the country and in 2012 the mother of all fiscal conservatives will take over as POTUS.....and then the work will start.

......Mitt Romney / Robert Gates......2012 for CLEAN pragmatic and proven leadership.

Posted by: allenridge | June 9, 2010 10:37 AM | Report abuse

"Where's the anti-incumbent rage in Tuesday's primary results?"

troll.

Posted by: iamrta | June 9, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

losthorizon10 wrote,


" We're talking about bigoted old cranks whose idea of a smart leader is a lying backwater dimwit from Alaska who quit half-way through her term as governor for reasons nobody can figure out (Sarah "the quitter...."
**************************************************************************************

Reasons no one can figure out? Last I read, she had grossed at least 12 million since she quit the Governor's Office.

Posted by: francis4 | June 9, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

If the tea party is a legitimate movement why can't its supporters here come up with anything more substantial than playground taunts and name calling?

If the tea party is a respectable citizen's movement, why do its supporters here all turn to racist insults and repeating propaganda almost word for word that they heard from Beck or hannity?

If the tea party is anything other than a media sensation that will fall into the dust heap of history why can't its proponents put forward any coherent statement of its principals or beliefs other than slogans they saw on someone's sign?

The acid test for the tea party has been the response to the BP Oil Disaster. How many people have argued against government action and expenditures and in favor of letting BP take care of it?

If you believed what you say, wouldn't this be your position?

The sole basis and purpose of the tea party is to oppose President Obama.

No matter what President Obama does you are going to oppose it. Period.

If President Obama renounced health care reform, the recovery and ending Bush tax welfare for the rich you would oppose that, too.

Posted by: TOMMYBASEBALL | June 9, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Thebump, does that include the 51% of the country that now has an ufavorable view of the tea party, according to a national poll released yesterday. And how do you explain in that same poll that democrats hold a double digit lead over republicans on who the people trust to solve the nations problems?

I think your analysis is self serving and delusional and grounded in wishful thinking.

Posted by: jaxas70 | June 9, 2010 10:47 AM | Report abuse

francis4, so your argument is someone should get elected and then abandon their responsibility to the voters and their state along with their professed principals so they can cash in????????

Is this the tea party idea of patriotism?

Palin told us by quitting when she did is that she does not have what it takes to stand up in tough times and that she really does not mean the things she says.

This is your hero?

Posted by: TOMMYBASEBALL | June 9, 2010 10:50 AM | Report abuse

Where is that rage? We won't really know
Until the polls close next November.
Then we'll have some evidence bearing on the question
If to ask it again we remember.

Posted by: Gonzage1 | June 9, 2010 10:53 AM | Report abuse

creatia52, the right has already wrecked America. Every single problem we have can be laid at the feet of obsessive fealty to conservative ideology. Deregulation, tax cuts for the investing classes, the crumbling of the nation's infrastructure, policies that let business and industry off the hook for virtually anything they want to do, the financial scandals that have occurred over the past decade culminating in the worst financial collapse since the Depression, the failure to maintain levees in New Orleans that led to the Katrina disaster, the Minnesota bridge collapse, Bernie Madoff, Enron, the scandal that is this bonus system in these powerful financial institutions, and now the mining disasters and the BP oil spills.

These conditions we are faced with did not hapen by accident. This is what happens when you allow conservative dogma to guide our government's polices on the questions of war, the economy, finance and the relationship between public and private investment. And that doesn't even take into account the regressive social policies that conservatives believe in.

No. Conservatives are going to wreck our country. They have already done that.

Posted by: jaxas70 | June 9, 2010 10:59 AM | Report abuse


Republicans are enjoying great victories because they have captured the center and convinced people that they offer competent, commonsense leadership.

Americans hate liberal loonies, losers, and liars, who are destroying our nation and blaming others.

Expect the massive rejection of the socialist agenda of Obama, Pelosi, and Reid to continue in November and 2012.

_________________________
what republican victories? those were primaries. a republican has to win the republican primary. what remains to be seen is whether heading further to the right will be a winning or losing strategy in the general. even if the country is moving further right (it may be, but that's just a natural pendulum effect), it's the middle that wins elections, and going further right than the independents to outflank each other in the primaries is at the risk of going too far right for the indies and moderates. just do the math.

it's gotten so that supporting shooting aliens on sight might be attacked as being soft on illegal immigration.

Posted by: JoeT1 | June 9, 2010 10:59 AM | Report abuse

So we are going to base a new meme about anti incumbents on one race last night between Lincoln and Halter -?
Seems to me that this was between those living in Arkansas who still liked Bill Clinton and a fight against union supporters who didn't like Lincoln and were out to prove their point about their strength and that she wasn't far enough to the left. What I am looking forward to is the union reaction now that the WH has told them they have just flushed 10 million down the toilet and whether they will still think it worth their money to support Obama and his team in November or whether they will discover they are a useful tool to democrats when they are needed and can be thrown under the bus like everyone else when not needed.

Posted by: justmyvoice | June 9, 2010 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Dionne, You say:
"The Democrats remain a lot less liberal than the Republicans are conservative". Huh! What planet did you come from. Earth to Mr. Dionne.

Look at House and Senate votes. There is no such thing as Conservative Democrats, or even moderate Democrats, I'm sure you consider Senators Snowe and Collins "Moderates". No,they are liberal Republicans--and that is O.K. But, you will agree they often vote with the #1 Senate Liberal. You have to do agree--based on his voting record, President Obama was "The most Liberal(#1)Senator, during his very short Senate stint. Senator Bernie Sanders, a self declared SOCIALIST, was only rated as the 10th most Liberal Senator. And don't almost all Democrats vote in lockstep with the President? Answer please. Bottom line--Votes speak louder than words--And Democrats are voting with the most Liberal President in our history.

Posted by: passonfirstdown | June 9, 2010 11:02 AM | Report abuse

When the American people rejected the Republican Limbaugh / Fox News brand of wingnuttery over the past two elections, the Republicans responded by doubling down on their loosing ideology.

In the process they moved from being narrow minded ideologs to raging kooks. Kooks who spend large amounts of time and energy shrieking about Obama's Kenyan birth certificate, the size of Obama's flag pin, urban legends regarding Obama's communist connections, associations that only exist in the mind of Sean Hannity, the brand of mustard that Obama puts on his hamburger and other matters of national importance.

And this is what happens when a political party is controlled by incompetent radio and TV entertainers who don't work in the real world and who don't have to answer for their actions.

Posted by: Andrea_KC | June 9, 2010 11:02 AM | Report abuse

georgedixon posted: The question was asked: "For instance, how many trillions were spent in Iraq?"

Far fewer than have been spent in inner cities in America..........but at least Iraq has improved.

Posted by: georgedixon | June 9, 2010 8:34 AM | Report abuse
----
I travel for a living and I hear this same kind of talk all over the country. People seem to think (who knows if talk radio or Fox News is pushing it?) that President Obama got elected and then immediately started handing out envelopes full of cash and 40oz-ers to the inner city poor. Nothing could be further from the truth. The same welfare rules that applied under President Bush apply under President Obama and not one haven't-worked-for-years person got anything extra as a result of his election. Trouble is, these folks were standing around doing nothing (4 generations now) before Mr. Obama came in and they are STILL standing around doing nothing today. The best we can all hope for is to break the cycle by educating their children enough to not follow in their (part-time) parent's footsteps.

My take is that Mr. Dixon does not live in a big city because, if he did, he would realize that we are long overdue in making major changes in the way we deal with the multi-generational poor in every major metro area. If the current President gets a second term, one hopes those changes will end up near the top of his agenda because breaking this vicious cycle is critical to the future of this country.

Yes, big mistakes were made before, during and after the LBJ "Great Society" programs were put in place. Slowly, they are being addressed but more needs to be done and done quickly. Every big-city resident, rich, poor or in between, knows this and wants it to happen -sooner rather than later.

Please go back and add up the peanuts we've spent on the Inner Cities compared to what's been spent on just the (latest) Iraq war alone. A trillion dollars dropped on (just) the issue described above would finally be able to break the cycle and save that next generation. It won't happen any time soon but its nice to dream that, one day, it could. Until then, please save the "Obama is giving all my money to the inner-city poor" tale for the folks on the far right. They can put that one up on the shelf right next to the "Obama is discriminating against white people" canard that I also hear all over the country. Honestly George, where do you and the other like-minded folks posting here get this stuff from? I really do want to know.

Thank you for your time Sir. I respect your opinion but disagree strongly with it and have tried to be polite about it. I hope you will show me the same courtesy if you choose to reply.

Posted by: dlo455 | June 9, 2010 11:20 AM | Report abuse

TO: zendrell who wrote:
“…These last couple of months have shown that hope and change is Demo-speech for tax and spend and lie to tax and spend more.”

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Well the past 8 years has shown the rest of us that Republicans lie and go to war and lie and spend and lie and borrow and lie and run the country into the ground and lie and blame anybody but themselves for their mistakes.

I guess that’s why we vote, so you can pick your lying warmonger and spend and borrower, and I can pick my Democrat who spends American Taxpayer dollars at home, instead of overseas.

Posted by: lindalovejones | June 9, 2010 11:20 AM | Report abuse

Wait until Nov. EJ...your question will be answered then.

Posted by: twann9852 | June 9, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse

Want to do something meaningful instead of giving smoke jobs? Blow out every incumbent in 2010 and 2012. Every one, good and bad. Take them all out in the next vote. Don't cloud the focus by picking who survives and who goes down. Vote out every Federal incumbent in 2010. One and all.

It's that's simple. Just do it.

Posted by: Texan7 | June 9, 2010 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: Nymous
The right has moved so far right they're off the page. They're just going to lose.

===============

Which party has moved off the page?

When quote-unquote Prolife democrats sign legislation that funds abortion hiding behind a worthless executive order the left is not only off the page . . . it's out to lunch.

You all hired the most liberal democrat in congress to be president. It's probably the best thing that ever happened in the sense that now people realize that "progressive" means progressively more stupid.

Posted by: reddog62 | June 9, 2010 11:27 AM | Report abuse

To all the angry Republicans commentators braying about all the Republican victories I would like to ask: You guys do know that those victories last night were in primaries? If a Republican hadn't won a Republican primary would have been really shocking. Your leap of logic that because a Republican won in a primary that he/she will be the assume winner in the general doesn't take into account that there were Democratic winners of Democratic primaries last night as well. You guys do know what the difference between a primary and the general election is don't you?

And to all those holding up one poll or another saying that their GOP candidate will beat the Democratic candidate I would like to point you to the evidence of Nevada's Sue Lowden who not that long ago was the favorite to win her party's nomination and on the other side of the coin the last poll in Arkansas showed Blanche Lincoln heading toward defeat. Now how did those races turn out? A poll and a dollar bill will buy you a lottery ticket and not much else.

Posted by: dre7861 | June 9, 2010 11:31 AM | Report abuse

" ... is that the primaries are showing much more ideological change in the GOP than among Democrats."

Finally, someone in the Washington punditry is noticing. Where Democrats have tension -- such as the Arkansas race -- is where the base does not feel the politician is sufficiently attentive to Democratic causes. But people like Lincoln are more or less on the same page, in the broadest strokes, with Democratic aims. She was, after all, one of 60 Senate votes for the health care bill.

Much of the Tea Party, on the other hand, wants to remake the GOP into a more militant version of the Libetarian Party. That could rip the GOP apart in the end.

Posted by: mypitts2 | June 9, 2010 11:32 AM | Report abuse

It's not anti-encumbent rage.... it is anti-democrat, anti-marxist, anti-socialist, anti-regressive eurpean rage.

Term limits would be wonderful but getting rid of the anti-American marxist socialist democrats is more important in the short run.

Posted by: markandbeth92 | June 9, 2010 11:42 AM | Report abuse

tommybaseall:
I don't know what you're talking about. Sarah Palin is a reactionary nut. I've never been a fan of hers.

Posted by: francis4 | June 9, 2010 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Obama is the gift that keeps on giving for the GOP. He has also alienated his "Hope and Change" grass roots supporters by embracing the status quo, yet doing so incompetently. He's managed to be as polarizing and unpopular as Bush in a much shorter period of time and many people are looking to the midterms to strip the Democrats of the power they abused in the health care "reconciliation" debacle. People are angry.

Posted by: Digitalman08 | June 9, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Where is the anti-incumbent rage? Well, it is really anti-progressive, tax, spend and borrow rage....and you will see a lot more of it in November after the mid-term election results come in, Mr. Dionne.

And this is the REAL mainstream America talking too.... not the left-wing fringe who has drunk from the koolaid far too often.

Posted by: honorswar26 | June 9, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

Why why why? Why do I read Dionne? Why?

Invariably, there is some completely ludicrous statement, like "The Democrats remain a lot less liberal than the Republicans are conservative."

Really, Dionne? And your supporting evidence of that is what, exactly?

What matters is that the Dems who are in charge, who are the face of their party, ARE staunchly liberal, which is why we're seeing government-mandated healthcare, gov't ownership of private industry,etc., etc., etc. That's why we're also seeing such dissatisfaction with that party, as evidenced by poll after poll. For instance, only 41% of independent voters approve of Obama's job performance, vs. 51% who don't. (Pollster.com a few days ago).

That's huge and that's what we'll see play out in November as the Dems lose seat after seat in gubernatorial, House, and Senate contests. And then they'll lose the big prize two years later.

Posted by: johnwp | June 9, 2010 11:53 AM | Report abuse

francis4, my apologies

Posted by: TOMMYBASEBALL | June 9, 2010 11:53 AM | Report abuse

"He's managed to be as polarizing and unpopular as Bush ..."

You are expressing your hopes, not reality. Obama's approval hovers consistently between 45 and 50, better than Reagan at this period.

Posted by: mypitts2 | June 9, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

You really have to laugh at these righties. Obama is the "gift that keeps on giving". Yet, of all of the political personalities and groups polled on their favorablilty ratings in yesterday's ABC/Washington Post poll, Obama's was the highest at 54%. Who has the highest unfavorables? The Tea Party at 51%. They are right there with the republicans and democrat.

And another right wing imbecile pretends that the tea party is the mainstream? What a hoot! In that same poll, Democrats by double digits over the republicans are trusted to solve the nation's problems. Does that sound to you like the tea party is mainstream?

Talk about delusionary!

Posted by: jaxas70 | June 9, 2010 11:55 AM | Report abuse

For decades liberal Democrats have sold their Ponzi schemes that promise Americans the easy life in exchange for their tax money and power in perpetuity. The people are discovering that Ponzi schemes do not last forever. The national debt is now 13 trillion dollars and the deficit over a trillion. What is the Democrat solution to the problem? Their answer is- what problem? My state of California has been run by liberal Democrats for so long they can't even balance a budget- most of the money -at least 50%- goes to the education lobby in the form of generous pensions and lifetime health care for retirees. Why should plumbers and electricians who work in the private sector be subsidizing teachers and prison guards so handsomely? The strongest Democrat supporters are government unions that collect a lot of money in member dues to guarantee Democrat electoral victories. We're broke- get off our necks!

Posted by: mhr614 | June 9, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

markandbeth92 - see my post above asking why the only thing people like you can only put forward churlish throw away pabulum.

All you are doing is throwing out insults you copied from Beck. I guess if you are bankrupt of ideas this is the best you can do.

Meanwhile, if you want to see the joys of term limits take a look at the mess in California.

Because of term limits there are no legislatures who have any grasp on the complex issues they have to deal with. As a result the laws and regulations are written by lobbyists.

The funny thing is that republicans got the term limits imposed, dominate the senate and are now so reliant on special interests.

Posted by: TOMMYBASEBALL | June 9, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

It's so funny to see guys like Dionne try to rationalize what's going on all around them, instead of seeing it for what it really is, which is an amazingly quick REJECTION of the progressive "movement" for which they are so dearly devoted.

Dionne, the vast majority of the citizens of this country do not think like you, do not share your "values," nor your leftist ideology, nor your welfare state mentality. Not that I think you'll ever realize it, but it's LIBERALISM (and its thigh-tingling proponents like you) that's getting rejected.

Posted by: johnwp | June 9, 2010 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Your problem Johnwp is not with EJ Dionne. EJ is actually quite correct. The democratic party has over the years become more centrist. Any political analyst with even a modest collection of brain cells and reasonably intact vocal chords to articulate will tell you that.

No, your problem is that you are part of a group of completely out of touch right wingers who listen to the preposterous burblings of Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck and come away with the notion that anyone a smidgen to the left of them is a communist. You have no concept of what the terms liberal or centrist, or socialist, or communist or fascist or for that matter conservative actually mean. For your narrow, paper thin, little world view, there are only two absolutes: us and them. No in between, no nuance, strictly two dimensional thinking.

That is why yours is a fatally flawed ideology. Because once you have eliminate all of those who are deemed not pure enough, you will begin to eat each other. Precisely what is happening to the tea party right now. They will eat themselves out of existence.

Posted by: jaxas70 | June 9, 2010 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Where is the anti-incumbent rage?

It's in the 27 percenters, the small, very noisy, easily manipulated group who supported both Bush and Nixon to the bitter end and who are normally controlled by the Republican hick fooling media. The people we now refer to as "teabaggers".

The Republicans used the hick fooling machine to whip these rubes up into a frenzy over a black Democrat winning the election and over did it. It now has trouble keeping it's dupes in line.

Posted by: Andrea_KC | June 9, 2010 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Responding to the rightwingnut loons today is like venturing into an orchard full of juicy, ripe, low-hanging fruit.

dummypants: "ever since democrats lost ted kennedy's senate seat to republicans,"

Right, numbnuts, a pro-choice Republican. Funny how you left out the pro-choice part. When an anti-choice Republican wins statewide office in Mass., come back and see us, ok Cletus?

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | June 9, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

So the MORE Conservative won in almost every race and according to EJ that is good for Democrats??? Seems to me EJ is saying liberalism is dead.. Now if that makes EJ want to celebrate that's fine with me...

Posted by: sovine08 | June 9, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

The right is so far to the right, they are embracing fascist, Nazi concepts that were dubunked decades ago. Wake up America - electing the Republican party means that rich Americans will get richer, corporations will control the country through even more deregulation, and the simple-minded policies that Bush and Cheney employed will come back and be even worse.

Posted by: c_attucks | June 9, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

jerky: "Republicans are enjoying great victories because they have captured the center and convinced people that they offer competent, commonsense leadership."

1. The center of what? Right field.

2. Republicans winning Republican primaries are not "great victories" -- someone has to win them.

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | June 9, 2010 12:39 PM | Report abuse

sovine08, EJ is saying that the gop is moving AWAY from the center.

Occasionally, America votes an extreme but, as a rule, America votes in the middle.

Ronald Reagan ran as a moderate in BOTH of his elections. W ran as a moderate. Scott Brown ran as a moderate (which, sorry, he is). McCain went to the right and, well, life got easier for Barack Obama.

If you campaign on an extreme you loose the middle. If you loose the middle you loose the election.

By moving so far to the right to appease what is really a minority of their own voters, republicans are alienating moderates.

Posted by: TOMMYBASEBALL | June 9, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

For all the hoopla about the "new" tea party movement there is nothing new about them. They are Republicans and will vote Republican.

We live in a country that tends to split about 50-50 down the middle between the parties. There isnt any reason to think this election will be any different no matter how much the media hypes for a different result.

Posted by: MarcMyWords | June 9, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

According to the websites I visited, Tea Party groups in Michigan are discouraging people from voting for independent candidates. It seems many of the Tea Party members are well meaning but are being used by Republican operatives to further their own political ambitions.

Posted by: CMAN27 | June 9, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

The south stole their land from indians, and then stole their labor from Africa. The north took the latter from them. Why didn't we just let them secede? They will always be red "tea party" racist states...

Posted by: johnkomalley | June 9, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

The simple fact of the matter is that the Right Wing doesn't know what in the hell it's doing.

Posted by: unpluggedboodah | June 9, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

It is clear what happens when Republicans are in power:
1. Two mismanaged and incredibly expensive wars that benefited contractors associated with the Republican Party(Blackwater, Halliburton etc.)
2. Collapse of the housing bubble brought on by Fed policy that was completely irrational.
3. Bank and Wall Street bailouts and a derivative crisis enabled by lax enforcement policies at the SEC.
4. $4.00 a gallon gas.
5. Stock market collapse in 2008 to the tune of 40+ percent.
6. A FEMA that didn't have a clue how to respond to a natural disaster.

Those are just off the top of my head. If I thought about it longer I could probably find a dozen more examples of incompetent conservative leadership.

Yes, I really want to the vote Republican and revisit those halcyon days. The Obama administration is doing fairly well considering the scope of the mess that was left behind by George W. Bush and his pals.

Posted by: CMAN27 | June 9, 2010 1:31 PM | Report abuse

I don't know who's going to win in November but as a former Democrat I could careless. They are all liars and they are all in the bag for big business.

I still am voting - I will be voting for whoever is NOT in office (except if they are endorsed by Palin the moron)

Posted by: question-guy | June 9, 2010 1:31 PM | Report abuse

The biggest take away from the Lincoln election in Arkansas is that even Democrat primary voters are turning their backs on Union backed candidates.

In any state, the most liberal group of voters is usually Dem primary voters.

- Maybe the SEIU/Acorn crowd has disgusted even Dem primary voters.
- Maybe the government employee unions strangling state and local government budgets is angering even Dem primary voters.
- Maybe the unions bankrupting GM and Chrysler and then getting bailed out by Obama sickened even Dem primary voters.
- Maybe the union goon squad tactics in trying to eliminate secret ballots in union elections is scaring even Dem primary voters.
- Maybe Andwrew Stern was smart to retire before the Union ship crashes on the rocks.

If the Unions can't prevail in a Dem primary after spending so much money, where does that leave Union-backed candidates in November's general election?

Dem politicians should be asking that question a lot between now and November.

Posted by: jfv123 | June 9, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

The "real story" is that the Beltway conventional wisdom is as clueless as ever.

Posted by: thebuckguy | June 9, 2010 1:41 PM | Report abuse

Johnkomalley, check your history a little more closely. The North participated in slavery for over 200 years as colonies and states. They did come to their senses eventually and outlawed it, but mainly because they realized that it was the cause of a burgeoning black population in their midst, something they did not want. But they were very hostile to blacks and made it clear they weren't equal or welcome. They became outcasts, which had the effect of driving the "freed" blacks to the South. Read Toqueville on this.

Also, the North too took its land from the native americans, just like the south. The book is called "The LAST of the Mohicans" for a reason.

Posted by: allknowingguy | June 9, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Do Americans really want those who hate government running it again? Aren't 12 trillion in debt and a budget forever in the red and misbegotten and unfunded wars and letting corporations run roughshod and the coded bigotry of the Southern Strategy and all the rest the GOP gave us enough?

Americans are getting it. The Tea Party activists don't like our government. They want to tear it down.

Posted by: kcbob | June 9, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

apparently, all that rage is just a figment of the Press Corps' imagination.
Those people will literally tell you anything today, and the exact opposite tomorrow.

Posted by: kesac | June 9, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Apparently, all that rage is just a figment of the Press Corps' imagination.
Those people will literally tell you anything today, and the exact opposite tomorrow.

Posted by: kesac | June 9, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Hey!!! I thought I was allknowingguy!!!!

What's up with that????

Posted by: TOMMYBASEBALL | June 9, 2010 2:06 PM | Report abuse

"The Tea Party is full of regular Americans who are tired of their country being destroyed by 'tax, spend and borrow' progressives and the 'moderate left' politicians who help facilitate the bankruptcy of America."

Uh, huh. That's why the Republicans were blown out of the water in the last national election, in the Senate, House, and with the Presidency.

So many people see what they want to see, and fail to see or admit to reality. So, yes, the Tea Party might be full of "regular Americans," but the Tea Party itself has relatively few members.

Posted by: davewyman | June 9, 2010 2:08 PM | Report abuse

All of this rage is part of the media looking for a story to hype and , it always appeared to me, as a intra GOP party fight. The Tea PArty, as survey after survey after have shown, are 88% white, 75% voted for McCain, and 74% usually vote GOP. That does not sound like an "uprising" to me. It sounds like these people are ticked off that after 8 years of conservative GOP rule, the deficit swelled, governement got bigger, and the incompetance handed the White House to a Black man. These Tea PArty folks I think are more angry at other Republicans than at Obama. So this is a fight amongst , what 20% of the elctorate ?
I'm sure there are a smattering of diseffected Democrats in there, especially in Appalachia region where McCain does well but so does a white Democrat.
I don't see how all this translates , especially with very very conservative candidates , into a GOP win in November. If most of them are Republicans to start with, and vote already and the GOP has been losing with those votes, how does that translate into a win?

Posted by: pb185 | June 9, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

politicians frequently run to the extreme in primaries and then try to run to the middle in the general. nothing new there. but at some point while doing the former you may say stuff that just closes the door on doing the latter. It may be that's what is happening at the moment. To outflank an already genuinely conservative republican, you need to say some pretty goofy stuff. Like deregulate big oil and everything will be fine. Stuff like that will get Reid reelected.

Posted by: JoeT1 | June 9, 2010 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Which columnists in the Washington Post should we believe?

Dionne, who asks in this column, "Where's the anti-incombent rage in Tuesday's primary results?"

Or Philip Rucker and Peter Slevin, who write, "Despite Ark. loss, progressives say Lincoln runoff sent warning to incumbent Democrats"

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/06/09/AR2010060902882.html?hpid=topnews

Posted by: dumbreddown | June 9, 2010 2:58 PM | Report abuse

A tiny warning about the blame being heaped on the Republicans of the Bush years......

Democrats ran the Senate for almost half of Bush's Presidency.

Posted by: dumbreddown | June 9, 2010 3:02 PM | Report abuse

Specter was originally a Democrat.

He only became a Republican in order to run for office.

He's been a wolf in sheep's clothing.

Posted by: dumbreddown | June 9, 2010 3:08 PM | Report abuse

The GOP is finished. Even the Tea Party people recognize that the Republicans represent only the wealthy, big corporations and Wall Street. The problem with the Tea Party wingnuts is they are so disorganized and incompetent that they can't organize their way into their own political party. Guess what? If they did, the American people would resoundingly reject them.

Posted by: gposner | June 9, 2010 3:16 PM | Report abuse

dumbreddown - So?

The gop controlled the house from 1995 - 2008.

In case you misplaced your copy of the constitution: while the Senate gets all the ink, ALL spending HAS TO COME FROM THE HOUSE.

Control of the house = control of the purse

Posted by: TOMMYBASEBALL | June 9, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

..."Republicans Party of "NO" who stood in the way of Majority/American's/Voted/Change, and Republicans did all they could to stop that, stop the Stimulus Bill that put over a Million American's to work! The Republicans lost a "RECORD/8.5 MILLION JOBS IN EIGHT YEARS, TAkes time to recover from a disaster/MESS/record/fact like that!

Republicans party of "NO" is the one's who are in "TROUBLE/BIG/TROUBLE! They did all they could to stop "Health Care Reform that now insures 32 Million American's the Democrats passed, without a single Republican/party/"NO" and the America people know it, and so do the Republicans!

..."America will suffer for years and years to overcome this kind of CRIMINAL/RECORD/REPUBLICANS/PARTY/NO" dumped in President Barack Obama's lap, and YOURS!

..."Glad I voted for President Barack Obama, who doing a good job cleaning up a "BIG/DISASTER Republicans/party/NO left him and YOU in and that my fellow Americans is why Republicans ones who in BIG/TROUBLE!

..."Throw'em out America, before party of "NO"Republicans finish you off for good!

Posted by: ztcb41 | June 9, 2010 3:33 PM | Report abuse

dumbreddown, in addition to everything else, take some reading comprehension lessons.

The point, it would appear, of the article by Rucker and Slevin is that the progressive "uprising" failed and Lincoln, the incumbent, won.

EJ asking "Where's the anti-incombent rage in Tuesday's primary results?" is pretty much the same thing.

Dufus.

Posted by: TOMMYBASEBALL | June 9, 2010 3:49 PM | Report abuse

As Einstein explained, velocity is relative to the observer's own motion:

Every sentient adult in the United States could see the GOP lurch abruptly from the right to the radical right; however Dione's own gradual drift rightwards appears to have prevented him from noticing the Democratic Party's slower but relentless march to the corporate right.

America no longer has a national political party that shares the philosophy and values of liberals and progressives. The corporatists purchased complete control of the American political system.

This November's election will be an interesting study of whether the GOP can win without moderate voters and the Democrats can win without its ideological base. Either way, Wall Street, the energy companies, insurers and arms merchants will be victorious over our expiring democracy.

Posted by: FoolontheHill1 | June 9, 2010 4:11 PM | Report abuse

angie12106 wrote,

"Yep! Teabaggers keep moving the GOP further and further to the farrrrrr right....privatizing Social Security, abolishing the EPA, raising eligibility age for Medicare and Social Security, etc."
**************************************************************************************

Wait until you see what President Obama and the Congress have in store for you and the rest of the country when the president's Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform gives its report. And wait until you see the tax increase.

Reagan did the same thing and the middle class, not the rich, received the largest tax increase in history.
=======================================

A middle class of taxpayers can be defined as those between the 50th percentile and the 95th percentile (those earning between $18,367 and $72,735 in 1988). Between 1981 and 1988, the income tax burden of the middle class declined from 57.5 percent in 1981 to 48.7 percent in 1988. This 8.8 percentage point decline in middle class tax burden is entirely accounted for by the increase borne by the top one percent.


In 1986 Reagan obtained an overhaul of the income tax code, which eliminated many deductions and exempted millions of people with low incomes. At the end of his administration, the Nation was enjoying its longest recorded period of peacetime prosperity without recession or depression.

Posted by: micholina | June 9, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse


It is anti-liberal rage not anti-incumbent rage.

Leftist candidates lost big time in yesterday's Democrat primaries.

Posted by: screwjob16 | June 9, 2010 4:46 PM | Report abuse

TO: screwjob16 who wrote:
“It is anti-liberal rage not anti-incumbent rage.
Leftist candidates lost big time in yesterday's Democrat primaries.”

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Well you proved me wrong.

Just when I thought Republicans couldn’t get any dumber, here you are.

“Leftist” candidates didn’t lose anything because it was a “primary” election where we pick our candidate, i.e., Republicans eliminated Republicans and selected their candidate to run in the General Election and so did we.

Wacko.

Posted by: lindalovejones | June 9, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse


Meanwhile the brand new Democrat candidate for Senate in South Carolina Alvin Greene, elected in yesterday's primary, is up on felony pornography charges involving a college coed.

Way to go Dims.

WaPo hacks play "bury the headline" with this story.

Posted by: screwjob16 | June 9, 2010 5:10 PM | Report abuse

TO: screwjob16 who wrote:
“It is anti-liberal rage not anti-incumbent rage.
Leftist candidates lost big time in yesterday's Democrat primaries.”

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Well you proved me wrong.

Just when I thought Republicans couldn’t get any dumber, here you are.

“Leftist” candidates didn’t lose anything because it was a “primary” election where we pick our candidate, i.e., Republicans eliminated Republicans and selected their candidate to run in the General Election and so did we.

Wacko.

Posted by: lindalovejones | June 9, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse


======================================
In a stunning victory Tuesday, Arkansas Sen. Blanche Lincoln proved she was a survivor in an anti-incumbent year by winning a squeaker of a race against Lt. Gov. Bill Halter in a runoff election for her party's nomination.

Defying expectations, Lincoln had been on the ropes against Halter, who had the support of big labor unions and liberal groups like MoveOn.org. But Lincoln had the support of former President Bill Clinton, an Arkansas native, and President Obama, whose spotty record this year had seemed unlikely to offer Lincoln much added value.

Posted by: micholina | June 9, 2010 5:22 PM | Report abuse

I don't think the November elections will be the anti-Obama bloodbath the conservatives are hoping for. The high-water mark for conservative and Tea Party rage came near the end of the health-care debate, when Republican defeatism was finally rejected. No Armageddon, no death panels; it was not the end of democracy that the slavering loonies in the right-wing political/entertainment complex predicted. Moderate tea partiers have understood this, and their rage has subsided. All that's left is Dick Armey's motley crew of hard-right radicals, birthers, and white supremacists.

The insanity is subsiding; the radical Tea Party candidates will be rejected in the general election, and moderate independents -- including reasonable Tea Partiers -- will cast sensible ballots for moderate Republicans and Democrats. I don't think the balance of power will change much at all.

What I'm hoping is that the rejection of the far right will lessen the effectiveness of the Beck/Limbaugh crowd, and obstruction will decline. Republicans will start to work with Democrats to improve -- as they see it -- Democratic initiatives, instead of blocking everything to the bitter end on general principle, and the country will start to pull together to work on solutions to America's many and serious problems.

Is there really too much hatred out there for that to happen?

Posted by: tequilamockingbird | June 9, 2010 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Where is the rage? Doesnt this guy read his own paper, such as, e.g., the Milbank article posted just above his own: "For 17 months, anger at President Obama and congressional Democrats has been pooling on the left. On Tuesday morning, it spilled onto the floor of an Omni Shoreham ballroom and splashed all over House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. "

Posted by: pioneer1 | June 9, 2010 5:43 PM | Report abuse

micholina, you need to attribute Wikipedia when you copy information directly from it.

You present a partial and one sided rose shaded view of Uncle Ron's tax policy.

First, Reagan decreased the top tax % from about 70% to 28%. This is a tad more than "...This 8.8 percentage point decline in middle class tax burden..."

True, eliminating some deductions did impact the net amount paid by the wealthy, their income also rose under Reagan at a far greater rate than that of the middle class.

Conservatives love to point out how the rich pay more in total dollars in tax than the middle class or poor do but ignore what this means as a % of income.

The rich pay a lower % of their income in taxes than the middle class does.

You also conveniently ignore the Social Security Reform Act (1983). This raised the amount of payroll deductions FOR THE MIDDLE CLASS for SSA and Medicare to off-set lost income from Reagan's income tax cuts.

Borrowing from Paul Krugman, the CBO showed the middle class tax burden in '80 was 8.2% and payroll taxes were 9.5%. In '88 the income tax burden was 6.6% but the payroll taxes were at 11.8%.

In 1980 17.7%. In 1988 18.4%. That looks like an increase to me.

Additionally, you may be fooled by the household income numbers while ignoring what it took to provide that income. Wage losses under Reagan not only REQUIRED more women to have to enter the work force, more families needed multiple jobs to keep up with where they had been.

Further, while it may be factually correct to say that "the Nation was enjoying its longest recorded period of peacetime prosperity without recession or depression..." you overlook the fact that the severe recession his predecessor, Bush the Elder, ineptly handled was the result of Reagan's policies.

Republicans also minimize the affects of Reagan's response to the recession that lasted from 1981 - 1982 and resulted from both the carry over of the oil crises and Reagan's fiscal policies.

Prior to 1981 America did not have a substantial homelessness problem. Reagan created a huge one. For many who lost there jobs in this recession it was difficult getting back to work and Reagan did not do anything to assist.

Finally, while middle class income rose some, the income of the top 10% rose at a far greater rate. The disparity between the rich and the middle class grew out of proportion to the growth of the economy.

Both Reagan and Bush pursued policies of welfare for the rich and both were extremely successful.

Reagan asked "are you better off today than you were 4 years ago?" in his first campaign. At the end of his presidency the middle class could only answer this question "NO."

Posted by: TOMMYBASEBALL | June 9, 2010 5:55 PM | Report abuse

The GOP moving to the right...sounds like a winner for the GOP and for America.

The Tea Party is not a movement of 'wingnuts'. The moniker belongs to the left with collection of groups like Code Pink and Moveon.org. The Tea Party is full of regular Americans who are tired of their country being destroyed by 'tax, spend and borrow' progressives and the 'moderate left' politicians who help facilitate the bankruptcy of America.

Posted by: honorswar26
_________________________________________
Yes Republicans, keep tilting the tea bagger way. PLEASE! Every thinking person knows that the tea baggers are the extreme wing of the Republican party. Like John Bircher extreme. The more the Republicans follow the tea bagger lead the better for Democrats and therefore better for the country.

Posted by: Observer001 | June 9, 2010 6:13 PM | Report abuse

A question I'd like to see answered: Were you better off on 1 January 2009 than you were on 1 January 2001? Surely the answer is a resounding "No!" I could easily exceed the allowable length of this post with criticisms of the Bush/Cheney years. But I would like to have a B/C supporter tell me what they feel the accomplishments of that period were. Jobs? Economy? Environment? Dependence on foreign oil? Security? American power, prestige, and influence in the world? Immigration policy? Health? Education? Infrastructure?

Posted by: tequilamockingbird | June 9, 2010 6:14 PM | Report abuse

It appears to me to be folly to draw conclusions from primary races when more than 90% of the registered voters don't bother to vote.

Posted by: jculfsr | June 9, 2010 6:17 PM | Report abuse

interactidiomas,
You wondered what you should tell your students who are candidates for the Brazilian Diplomatic Corps. From one teacher to another, here's a suggestion.
The United States remains the home of the brave. Our highest military honors go to those who risk or sacrifice their lives to save others on the battlefield. In other words, we particularly value the courage it takes to help others. We value civil discourse, too. Yes, we detested George W. Bush and what he did to our country, but we didn't warn our fellow citizens that we would use force to wrest control of our country from Bush and his minions.
Sadly, during the Reagan and Bush administrations, men of cowardice and cunning found that they could stir and manipulate public fear and use it to their advantage. Don't get me wrong: All of us grieved for the victims of 9/11, but many of us knew that we could not defeat terrorists with military action, and we were sickened when Bush ordered the invasion of Iraq to locate nonexistent WMDs and to effect regime change. But Bush and Cheney and Rove were skillful in using fear and focusing it on those they defined as our enemies.
President Obama doesn't believe in using fear in that way, and he does believe that defining one nation as a friend and another as an enemy ultimately produces no good outcome. He sees health care and economic opportunity as human rights that must be extended to every American. But the fear that Reagan and Bush and Cheney and Rove stirred up still remains among some people. With no one to focus it for them, they focus it on President Obama. Sometimes in the United States, the hysterical screams of the cowardly and craven seem much louder than the calm reasoning of those who truly love their country and her constitution. This is still the home of the brave, and every once in awhile we have to prove it again at the ballot box.

Posted by: jlhare1 | June 9, 2010 6:41 PM | Report abuse

Well zendrell,

I have good news for you. We can both stay home next election day!

Posted by: MadamDeb | June 9, 2010 6:41 PM | Report abuse

The rhetoric of the Republicans and 'tea party' psychos is even more meaningless now. They stand for extremist politics, deregulating BP types and Wall Street looters, decimating our infrastructure, and intensifying our divisiveness. They are not merely seeking an encore of the Reagan and W. Bush disasters, but to make things even worse.

Posted by: revbookburn | June 9, 2010 7:06 PM | Report abuse

"Where's the rage?", Dionne asks. He has asked everyone he knows in Manhattan, DC and LA. He has searched the halls of liberal think tanks, like the Center for American Progress or Think Progress, and he has combed the halls of academia. He cannot find anti-incumbent rage.

Well no wonder, he is not looking for it. I wonder what the spin in November will be.

It looks like Democrats are going to politicize the oil spill to stay in power, they lost on obamacare by listening to the president, they spent so much they are scaring independents that launched Obama into office by believing the lies he ran on, they lost on immigration. They only have the oil spill, so the lapdog media is now going to go full tilt 24/7.

Oil spill day 51: dead bird, dead fish, all due to Republicans

Oil Assault Day 57: more dead birds, more dead fish. Still due to Republicans.

We will hear this all the way up until the elections, as it is all there is left. This is how they will run against Bush. I knew they wanted to , but after a few years it is getting harder and harder to blame Bush.

Democrats want to stand on no more drilling, then Democrats must stop driving cars, they must stop using energy until we come up with the energy source that can actually replace fossil fuels, not the liberal fantasy of wind and solar powering cars.


Posted by: thelaw1 | June 9, 2010 7:13 PM | Report abuse

This "Socialist, Marxist Agenda" line is getting stale. The big mouths on right-wing radio spew it out and it gets repeated on these boards. Think for yourselves, people!

Posted by: jazzfan19605 | June 9, 2010 8:09 PM | Report abuse

EJ Dionne is absolutely correct. It is the poll numbers, election results, loss of the Kennedy Seat, and certain defeat of the Majority Leader of the Senate that are all one-in-a-million anomalies.

So Democrats, run proudly on the Stimulus Bill, Healthcare Bill, and President Obama this November. Trust in EJ Dionne.

Posted by: Delongl | June 9, 2010 8:23 PM | Report abuse

I do believe that the Tea Party discredited itself in the case of Periello's seat in their attempts to "target" him, his family, his home, and his brother's gas line.

Of course the mainstream Republican candidate won in that primary. Voters don't forget lunacy THAT quickly.

Posted by: jb1151 | June 9, 2010 8:40 PM | Report abuse

no, what this author calls right wing most people who can think also call right wing.

the difference is that what this author calls mainstream most people call left wing.

if you're a rightwing nutjob pukehead, you probably can't tell the difference.

Posted by: barferio | June 9, 2010 9:13 PM | Report abuse

EJ really has to get out more often.There is evidence among angry union guys/gals who are furious with Obama,Pelosi and Reid.They may not vote Republican but the odds are good that many will not vote at all in November.There are Seniors who aren`t buying theObamacare sales pitch because they`re not dumb enough to ignore pending Medicare budget cuts for Sebelius "happy talk".We`re in a financial mess an.d most of the nation knows it

Posted by: bowspray | June 9, 2010 10:59 PM | Report abuse

The big issues for 2010 center around the out-of-control government spending and borrowing. The government of the United States, a very wealthy nation, has put itself in so much debt that it's not unthinkable that it might one day have to declare bankruptcy. The government has shown itself to be incompetent and corrupt.
What program does the Republican party have to fix these problems? None, beyond a few soundbites and a handfull of talking points. And their past record on fiscal responsibility is every bit as bad as the other major party's--if not even worse.
The voters are angry, and they should be.
But in this case neither the Republicans or the Democrats have much interest in actually getting the budget under control. Why don't they tell us what programs they want to cut to rein in spending, and where do they want to increase taxes to increase revenue? They're not saying. If someone thinks that voting Republican will help restore fiscal responsibility they're going to be in for a big disappointment.
Same with voting Democrat, but the noise is coming from the right, and I'd like to know what they are going to do on fiscal issues if they come into power.

Posted by: parkerjere | June 9, 2010 11:12 PM | Report abuse

50Eagle wrote:
"When we put the brakes on this Marxist agenda"

I have seen or heard this phrase marxist agenda too many times to count and I'm still in the dark about what the current administration is doing that is "Marxist"

50Eagle please explain what you mean

Posted by: youngj1 | June 10, 2010 12:04 AM | Report abuse

The public displays of delusional rage (threats of violence, revolutionary change, taking back the country, etc.) from baggers, bigots, gunnies, militia types, Beckers, Foxers, Coburn-type southern degenerates, immigrationists and other leaderless rabble are the same sorts of thing that you see when you cut the head off a poisonous snake. It writhes and roils about in contorted, meaningless twists and turns. Like the aforementioned people, the snake is operating on pure, unrestrained brainless id. When people talk about the ill/un educated Americans, they are talking about these people. They are the people who through their neglect of what was happening to this country during Reagan's disastrous administration (whoopee! No rules, no regulations), Clinton’s trade disasters, and Bush-Bush madness brought down this country, and this miscreant lot has not finished with its ruination yet.
There is a perverse pleasure that can be taken from watching the agonies they brought and are continuing to bring on themselves. The problem is, of course, that rational people will again have to clean up the mess these people have made. Well, we did it before, and we can do it again. Yes, we can. Sad for you, baggers, bigots, Beckers, gunnies, Foxers, degenerates, etc., that-since you have lost your heads-you can't enjoy your own mad writhings. The right wing is composed of idiots “…full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.” Ditto Tuesday night and its dull witted interpreters.

Posted by: tuonela | June 10, 2010 12:52 AM | Report abuse

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