Yesterdays election results were about what people expected. The Republicans won the House and the Democrats managed to maintain a slim lead in the Senate. John Boehner will now be the Speaker of the House and the Republicans can start down the road of investigations and subcommittees and the like. However the simple truth of the matter is that even with the election results, not much is going to change. The sky is not going to fall, the world will not stop spinning on its axis and the majority of people in the US will go an as if nothing of importance happened yesterday. That is the basic truth of politics in this country. After the election of President Obama, some got their hopes so unbelievably inflated that there was no possibility that he could meet their expectations. The hangover from the high of victory in '08 has reverberated all the way to last nights election. Here's what I wrote back in November of '08:
If Barack Obama were actually to become the next President of the United States would the country be transformed overnight? Of course not. We face an economic crisis of untold proportion and there is nothing that will make that go away, least of all the election of a new President. The rich will still be rich, the poor will still be poor, the homeless will still be homeless, hundreds of thousands of our troops will still be deployed in the Middle East and our economy is still going to be in very poor shape. The new President is going to be left with multiple issues to deal with from the current administration. An Obama presidency would not mean that our problems would disappear, in fact, the next President is going to face some monumental challenges that no change in policy is going to be able to overcome in a few months. The country would head in a different direction under an Obama administration, but the issues are and would continue to be very challenging for the country.
Last nights results do not do not change my thoughts in any way. Last nights results show what happens when Republicans are energized and motivated and Democrats are not. The Republicans continue to promise what they've always promised and have always failed to deliver. The energy just happened to be on their side this time. The story of fear and hate will always find an audience, it just so happens that the color of president in combination with the color of those coming from our southern neighbor and bad economic times, made the story an easy sell. Perhaps after two years of non action, the Tea Party (read Republicans) will become disillusioned with their leadership as well.
What does this mean for 2012? It's hard to say. If the economy improves, then Obama wins in a cakewalk. If it doesn't then all bets are off. At this point, if I were a betting man, I would put Sarah Palin as the even money favorite to win the Republican nomination. However don't count out Scott Brown or Marco Rubio following the "Obama method" and running for president in the middle of the their first terms in Senate. The rest of the Republican field is so uninspiring that I wouldn't give the lot of them (Romney, Gingrich, Pawlenty, Barbor, Huckabee) even long shot odds. I personally still think the nomination is sitting out there waiting for Jeb Bush if he wants it.
Anyway,there's no reason to panic over the results from last night. The sky is not falling and thankfully no one person is capable of bringing it down by themselves. That means of course that no one person is capable of making the sun shine all the time either. We would do well to remember that. As we've seen, the wheels turn very slowly in DC, if they ever turn at all.