An American Girl in Washington

Why Dems should be thrilled about last night

Posted in Politics- as I see it by AGinDC on 3 November 2010

Last night’s election wasn’t pretty.  After two weeks of volunteering at the DNC and over 18 hours in the office in one day helping to protect the vote, watching the returns while drinking bourbon out of styrofoam cups was pretty damned depressing.  And waking up didn’t feel any better.  But while I was eating lunch in my favourite House cafeteria today, I started to think.  And the more I thought, the happier I got.  A lot of this is due to the fact that I was with Ferr, and he’s hilarious.  But a lot of it is because I really started to think about what last night means.

While we’re all sitting around moping and feeling devastated and wishing things had gone differently, we really need to recognize that things are not as  bad as they seem.  In fact, they could have been a lot worse.  We lost the House and kept the Senate like we knew we would (turns out polling isn’t all that skewed after all), but we also achieved something we weren’t certain about.  Except for Rand Paul and Nikki Haley (who everyone knew would win and who aren’t really all that crazy) not a single one of the headline-making, Palin-flaunting, scary, crazy, racist, ignorant, out-of-control Tea Party/Republican candidates won.  Angle lost, Fiorina lost, McMahon lost, O’Donnell lost, even Whitman lost and she spent $140 million of her own damn money.  Sure, America rejected the massively progressive agenda of the last two years, the economy, the party in power, and the administration’s lack of communication.  That’s okay.  They also rejected the crazy.  Those of us who agree with Dems, those of us who read Talking Points Memo and Roll Call and get Mike Allen’s daily emails and understand the nuances of cap-and-trade might have been thrilled with Congress’ incredible accomplishments in the last two years.  But is it really so bad that there are people out there who don’t agree with us, that they voted, and that they won?  Is it so bad that the people who may not understand the finer points of the stimulus plan- mostly because we’re not so good at explaining it- might feel like the reason they don’t have a job is because of the party in power and maybe if we keep changing things eventually someone will help?  I don’t think it is.  What I do see though, is hope.  Maybe Jon Stewart’s rally worked after all.  We all had this communal nightmare of Tea Partiers taking over the Senate, running through the House, and burning every bank in the country.  Instead, Americans showed that they’re not willing to throw away their vote.  They might not vote for a Democrat, and that’s okay.  They’re not going to vote for a psycho either.

Nothing has given me as much hope for 2012, and for the sanity of our nation, as last night did.  Americans are not stupid.  And that means that if Mrs. Palin or any other mama grizzly, papa bear, or whatever other fake-folksy nickname a crazy Republican can come up with, goes against our President in 2012, Americans aren’t going to make just any choice.  They’re going to make the smart one.

God bless America, now more than ever.



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