Saturday, November 13, 2010

2010 Mid-Term Election

This post is a little late but unfortunately some travel and some sickness going through the family has interrupted my ability to post on the November 2 elections. Needless to say it was another "Vote for Change" to borrow a phrase.

As expected the House of Representatives flipped back to Republican control with over 60 seats switching back to the GOP. Three very senior Democratic chairman were part of the GOP's tally (John Spratt, Chairman of Budget, James Oberstar, Chairman of Transportation and Ike Skelton, Chairman of Armed Services) as well as many moderate to conservative Democrats who could not survive the onslaught. The Senate tally was equally good to the GOP although not good enough to get to the 60 votes needed to stop a filibuster...although most political writers felt that 60 was out of reach, the Hat Trick included.

In January President Obama will now face divided government with the House firmly in the control of the GOP. We'll see what happens...will he be like Bill Clinton and learn to work with this new scenario or will he still insist on forging ahead with a liberal agenda? Only time will tell.

Once not so positive post-election occurrence if you are a Democrat (and a positive one if you are a Republican) was the election of soon-to-be former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi as the Democratic minority leader in the new Congress. Although there was some objection to her running for the top leadership post by some surviving conservative Democrats, she won handily and will continue to be the face of the Democratic Party in the House of Representatives. Given that she was the face of what many voters voted AGAINST in the 2010 Mid-term elections I'm not sure of the logic of electing her leader...except for delusion among the liberals in the House combined with a sense of entitlement on Pelosi's part. We'll see where this goes but I suspect this will be helpful for the GOP as they were able to label Pelosi in the last election as the "face of the problem" of expanded government and a health care law that many did not want.

Needless to say there have been some big changes but Republicans should go forward with caution compared with 1994. After the colossal 1994 change in power the GOP thought for sure they would take the White House in 1996 which did not even come close to happening. Two years is a long time to recover politically and the GOP now has some responsibilities to govern now that they control one of the Congressional chambers. Still, it was a good night for conservatives and those in the center-right who have had some significant concerns about the way our government has operated in recent years. Hopefully some good will come out of this change...we can always hope.

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