A View From The Handbasket

Sunday, November 12, 2006
Analysis Paralysis
Posted by neros_fiddle at 10:48 AM
I haven't posted anything in a week because I feel somehow obligated to say something interesting and insightful about the elections. The truth is that I have no piercing insights to share. The Democrats kicked the GOP's ass on Tuesday. The most interesting stat was that at least the last time I checked, the Republicans had gained nothing anywhere. No Democratic House seats, Senate seats or governorships became Republicans, which is nothing short of remarkable. (There was one House race in Georgia that was undecided the last time I checked, and held the potential to be a GOP pickup. The Dem candidate was ahead in the count, though.)

All things are cyclical of course, and it was perhaps inevitable that the blind arrogance of the neocons would eventually deliver diminishing returns. That it would result in a repudiation this complete this soon was surprising. I'd like to think that it represents a desire for a return to checks and balances and a grown-up foreign policy. For some voters, this was probably true, though many others pulling the Dem lever were probably angered by specific scandals or other less ideological motivations.

Appearances to the contrary, I'm not sitting here waving my blue flag and cheering "my side" -- it remains to be seen whether the Democrats can use this victory wisely or fritter it away like the fizzled "Republican revolution" of 1994 (which was a very different beast to the post-9/11 neocon rampage). Unless they find a way to be even more accommodating to the executive branch's desires than the last Congress, though, it can hardly be a step backward. Gridlock would be an upgrade.

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