Discussion in 'The Senate Floor' started by kingthlayer, Mar 4, 2011.
Here on out, images-only posts, single links, and the like will be edited out from this thread, they're more than welcome in this thread here, but they're not up to Senate standard where we want to hear your thoughts, not just what you've found.
Rogue, is that being covered by media outlets, or is that word of mouth at this point?
The more I look at this, the more I think we won't have a decision tonight. Not because of Ohio, I think that'll sort out reasonably, but I'm wondering if the hurricane aftermath will have basically messed up Pennsylvania enough that it will take a couple days to know the vote there for sure. I expect an Obama win there, but it may be too uncertain to call for a few days. Also, while I don't think it was always the case, with the way romney lost ground, I think I have to concede to KW that at this point, I think whoever wins Ohio wins it all. Romney couldn't get some other states sufficiently in play to NOT have that be the state that makes or breaks his chances.
An interesting question, I think, is what happens if Romney wins the popular but loses the electoral college. Obviously, Obama wins the race, but what long term effects? I've been discussing this with people and while others think that would be the downfall of the electoral college, I think all that will happen is 2000 arguments rehashed, but with the roles reversed, and the Democrats defending the EC (and their legitimacy as the winner) while the Republicans get upset. Because politics has no memory.
I'm glad to see it - I was actually asking without snark. But it did take at least six hours to be reported.
i dunno democrats usually have a stronger sense of irony than republicans (higher levels of educational achievment, arts majors and all that), so im imagining the refrain from democrats would be "lol, we told you but thems the rules so i guess you have to live with it this time". republicans would undoubtedly reach for birther-esque sloganeering about the Usurper Obama and 2000 would go down the memory hole.
we'll never know unless it happens tho so get out there and vote "romney", folks!
Just heard something funny about Romney on CNN. Apparently he only wrote a victory speech. What if he loses?
I heard the news say he only wrote one speech not that it was a victory speech. He surely can't be so delusional as to think he had this in the bag? If so, I truly look forward to watching him flounder if the President wins and he loses badly.
I heard what I heard on CNN, so I presume that its accurate.
Please post spontaneous reactions to the ongoing election in the other thread.
Let's hope that as part of his vast experience as a business executive, he learned how to improvise.
Well, it looks like Obama is going to get elected for a 2nd term, with very few, if any surprises in voting results. The immediate effect is going to be seeing who the President's "second term" staff is going to be, most importantly to replace Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State. Beyond that, without a transition phase of a new President, I hope the administration has some economic plans waiting in the wings. I'm not sure how much the President can actually control economic factors beyond perception, but that's the issue where all eyes are going to be on the President.
What's also interesting is that results in individual state governors. The GOP is slated to to have 33 governors, the most in about 87 years. So it looks like the federal level executive will be democratic, while at the state level, the the executive is republican.
As for Congress, there were no real surprises there either. The house will stay republican, the Senate democratic, and no great swings in either.
In the dawning of the present ascendancy, when rivals were honorable and formidable, there were few allies for our then unknown leader. But one moderate, dynamic senator from Missouri sacrificed all her image to magnify his. And when he had won, you threw yourself on your sword over and over to push us over the top. In a desert of conservative hostility, you were our water-bearer on everything from healthcare to financial reform. When swords were unsheathed, you threw yourself atop them as a most faithful bodyguard to His Excellency. Unabashedly, you defy the most radical fringe of the Tea Party in the heart of their rebellious provinces. And for it? Your margin of victory rivals what Romney was able to achieve in the state. For years, the whole world thought such a result impossible. But as in 2007, you were among the first to say "Yes we can." We, the Obamans, have seen and approved. Now receive your just reward. Claire McCaskill, you are a champion.
No surprises? That's completely untrue. If you had told most observers a year ago that not only would Democrats not lose the Senate, but that they would gain a couple seats, I think they would have been just a bit surprised.
America's electoral landscape has been solidly established by these past 4 elections. The battleground states form a small and consistent group, and only five states serve as bellwethers - Ohio, Virginia, Colorado, Nevada, and Florida (pending the final count tonight). Are we locked into this pattern for the foreseeable future, or will things change in 2016? Will demographic changes put more states into play? Will they take states out of play (Nevada, for example)? Or is the candidate ultimately more important than demographics? What would it take for a state in the Deep South to go blue again, or a state in the Northeast to go red?
Heck, just six months ago, everybody was saying the Senate was going to go to GOP hands.
No, that's not what I mean. I'm not talking about a year ago, I'm talking about results which aren't surprising. I'm thinking of races like Missouri and Indiana, where the republican candidates jammed their feet solidly down their mouths, the races were effectively over at that point. Up until their fatal errors, I think both states would have elected the republican candidate, and the Senate would have stayed pretty close to 2008 levels. But after their boneheadness, the results were predictable. Most of the other Senate races just went to the incumbent, which had the net result of keeping democrats positions.
I suppose the only Senate "surprise" was in Massachusetts, were Elizabeth Warren beat out Scott Brown. But even that result wasn't surprising because of Massachusetts heavy democratic leaning. I'd question why voters even chose Brown back in 2010 to take Edward Kennedy's position, and then re-align back to party identity. I wasn't aware of any gaffes that Brown did (at least that got any news coverage), but I didn't pay attention to how he was looked at within the state.
The house picked up some GOP seats, but none of those races were all that surprising either.
The Hero of 400 Years has been revealed, but the road since has not been easy. We have trekked through barren deserts, and known levels of poverty we had not previously conceived of. Frustrations have run deep. Too often, our leader struck the stone to deliver what he promised. As his arms faltered, the bright afternoon sun yielded at moments to the shadows of disappointment. But something else happened. A people brought down a Pharaoh. Standards were raised for the health of the masses. A new law came down, whose theme was justice. And to those who wondered about the way forward, we see the answer at the end of a grueling climb. The bounty spreads out before us, if only we will seize it. And who will our marshal our forces? Our first and best leader. The one who makes a nation of fractious tribes. The Hero of 400 Years.
Hmm... we have some fanfiction in here.
Well, that was one heck of a brutal election for Romney (the loss of every single toss up has to hurt), and it looks like it trickled down into some stuff down the ballot, like the 4 house seats that the Republicans lost in Illinois, which was a state I didn't even realize they had that many house seats in. Looks like the Obama strength there cleared out the Republicans that won in 2010 there. The NY TImes has an interesting map, as well: http://elections.nytimes.com/2012/results/president
The length of the arrows it shows depicts how the states shifted since 2008. It does seem interesting to note that there's only two basic regions that seem to be where Obama actually gained from 2008. One is the New Jersey/New York area, and my first thought is how much of that is a boost he got in the last week as a positive reaction to the way the hurricane was handled that either won over voters, or got some voters more enthusiastic. The only other area that Obama actually made gains, it seems, was an almost perfect match up of the black belt. I'd think that the case can even be made that this election would have been far closer without that, as the black belt does go through part of Florida and Virginia. Only a few percent of a shift in Virginia would have given it to Romney, and Florida is an even thinner margin. Ultimately, though, it still wasn't enough.
The other interesting part, I'd think, is that for all the focus on ineffectiveness of the Romney campaign in Michigan, Michigan actually shifted further away from Obama than the US did as a whole, it seems. If he'd generated that sort of movement in Ohio and Florida, this would be a different election. Granted, Michigan also had a larger vote that Obama could lose. It all seems to fall back to the same narrative that if Romney could've maintained his momentum until, like, the first week of December, this would have been a potentially very different election. Seems like Romney got his campaign moving too late. Anyone have any thoughts on if that's a failure in planning, or simply how long it took his campaign to recover from the damage they took during the primary (and more cynically, how long it took for Romney to distance himself from his primary positions and move to his general election positions)
The only disappointing aspect of the election result is that you pretty much know what to expect from Obama as you have four years of history to draw from and his reelection campaign was reasonably comprehensive and consistent in terms of policy positions. Compare and contrast this to Romney and his campaign of inconsistency and contradictions and you would have had a nail biting Romney first term which would have defied all prediction. It would have been a real lucky dip as Romney presented so many sides and personas you would never guess which way he would have gone on any particular issue.
I remain hopeful that we'll get a no-holds-barred, gloves-are-off Obama 2.0.
And I would like to congratulate our American friends with this excellent result!
Actually, I don't think it would have taken until December. Hurricane Sandy was probably a big game-changer in all of this. Prior to the hurricane striking, Romney had consistent leads, especially in Gallup, but also Rasmussen. Romney also was holding significant leads among independents in a lot of the state surveys. Based on those, I think Obama was headed for a close loss prior to Sandy - despite the stupid comments from Akin and (to a lesser extent) Mourdock. Thinking about it the morning after, I believe this is no mandate election - in fact, I don't think anything has been decided. The House looks to be relatively unchanged - GOP losses in Illinois are going to be mostly offset in some other parts of the country, and the net shift will probably top out at 11 seats (maybe fewer as the last races get resolved).
That said, I do feel very pessimistic about the future of this country - especially our ability to remain the United States of America. Obama didn't run on anything positive for his second term - all he offered was class envy, fear, and in essence, he pitted Blue America against Red America. He essentially used Karl Rove's 2004 playbook. He still has a huge problem: Like George W. Bush in 2005, by winning in this fashion, there's not going to be any desire for compromise on either side.
Democrats will not want to be generous to those they see as a bunch of racists who were trying to wage a war on women while doing the bidding of the richest 1% while throwing the poor out on the street. Obama asked for votes on the basis of revenge, and he won. His supporters will expect him to deliver that revenge. And right now for any sort of budget to be passed - or for anything to be done on the fiscal cliff or entitlements - Obama will HAVE to sit down and cut a deal with the House Republicans, and one of those across the table will be Paul Ryan. How well does anyone here think Obama's politcal base will take a deal with the guy who many of them think wants to throw Grandma off a cliff?
On the other side of the aisle, Republicans are not only of the belief that Obama's proposals are in essence an immoral burdening of future generations with debt on increasingly intrusive federal programs that are way outside the scope of the Constitution, while also threatening God-given rights like religious freedom. They believe that public-sector unions are bankrupting state and local governments, and charging more and more for less and less (especially in education). They also believe Obama is trying to bring about America's decline as a world power, and many doubt he really loves this country. The Republican base, after being called racists and demonized for four years because they stood on their principles, aren't in a mood to cut a deal, either. They also have good reason to believe that this election loss is largely due to an act of God outside of anyone's control (had there been no Christie-Obama lovefest, I think Romney doubles his margin among Independents).
As I have said many times, before, we have two Americas, and they don't really like each other - there not even much tolerance for each other. I think that Michael Barone lays it out quite well:
I don't think I would trade today for the 1950s - in many ways, we are better off, especially due to the new technology. That said, I think a lot of people want that cohesion back, and are willing to try to compel its return. And maybe to a large extent, both sides on the political debate are guilty - there are no innocent parties in all of this. I recently re-watched Gettysburg, and there's just one quote that expresses how I feel:
A simple solution. Yet why is it so hard? James Robbins has, I think the best answer, and it frightens me:
Over the last ten-twelve years, I can speak to what Robbins describes... I began to distrust liberals in general starting with gun control in the early 1990s (I just found the push for it to be unfair on the face of it). Frankly, I don't believe that they will protect what I value. I am not even sure that I have an equal place in the society they wish to create. I've come to hate the Left in this country, first over Gore's conduct in the 2000 election, then over the War on Terror. The thing is, I am very sure that there is someone on the Left with their distrust and hatred of me. I find the America that the Left wants to create abhorrent - and I am sure they find the America I would like to be equally abhorrent.
I'd be content to be left alone, and leave others alone. I just can't trust that I will be left alone, so when I perceive that someone is trying to pry into my life, I try to head it off - and since it is an all-or-nothing fight, there's no way I can trust that any compromise will last. Whether it's my religious freedom, my ability to own an AR-15 (or four), or just being able to get a 40-ounce cup of soda, I want to be able to make those choices for myself, not have some politician or bureaucrat tell me that I can't. And yes, I grow to hate that - and wind up greatly resenting those who do try to butt in to my life. I'd feel better if there was some sense that there were people on the other side of the political divide who were trying to somehow hold their own side to a "live and let live" deal - but I don't see that happening.
I hate this situation... but I do not see an alternative.
I'd agree that the GOP's old white man's party will be able to gerrymander its way to House victories for another decade at least. I don't see any clear path out of the country's ideological schism except through the ongoing relative attrition of the GOP's demographic base. The rural poor and working class need to find a way out of the extractive economic grip of the GOP elite. These well-meaning people are indeed, as Wocky says " trekking through barren deserts" and "levels of poverty [they] had not previously conceived of." They need to end their wanderings and come home to a political party that truly represents their interests.
Attention Mitt Romney,
The all female congressional delegation, the state senate president and the governor of the great state of New Hampshire has something to say to you.
We got your binders full of women right here!
Can somebody meme that please.
It's unfortunate that Hurricane Sandy will enter Republican and perhaps general political mythology as being an event that won the election for President Obama. It did not, and Republicans would be foolish to believe this. It no doubt affected the popular vote, but Obama was headed to an electoral college win no matter what. Chris Christie's bearhug didn't win the election for the President either, though it no doubt helped him in the popular vote.
The Republican Party needs to look at its absolute fundamentals and decide what it wants to do. Compared to what's coming in the future (if nothing meaningful changes), this election was comparatively kind to them.