Elections Used To Have Consquences

Posted by on Feb 14, 2010 in Politics | No Comments

From Steve Benen at Washington Monthly has some pretty spot on things to say about Republicans and their near 24/7 use of the filibuster (emphasis mine):

I was looking over the election returns from 2008 last night. I hadn’t thought about it in a while, but I was reminded just how remarkably successful Democrats were in the cycle. It was a genuinely impressive electoral display—Dems didn’t just win, they dominated.

Obama won states a Democrat hadn’t carried in a generation. Democratic candidates won Senate races in states where the party is supposed to be weak—Alaska, North Carolina, Louisiana, Montana, and Arkansas. House Dems built up the largest congressional majority in three decades. Obama’s 52.8% of the popular vote was the highest of any candidate in either party in 20 years, and the highest for a non-incumbent in 56 years.

[….]

It’s part of what makes the Republican tactics of the last 13 months so extraordinary—it’s the first time in memory that a major political party decided, en masse, that elections simply shouldn’t have consequences. We’ve never had a minority lose a national landslide and then decide that the huge governing majority must not even be able to vote on its own agenda.

As an institutional matter, it’s almost tragic to see Republicans deliberately break the American political process, and then stand to reap rewards for their reckless intransigence. But as an electoral matter, I’m not at all sure Democratic policymakers appreciate the situation they find themselves in.

There is much more, and well worth a read. Although I’ve had many of these thoughts myself, I’ve never expressed them in this type of focused manner, and a message that might just work with the American public.

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