Tuesday, November 01, 2005

What a difference a year makes

I can remember the first Tuesday in November a year ago watching the election results on-line and the very gradual disappointments as the returns trickled in. The mood swing was so strong - after hearing Zogby erroneously state that Kerry was going to win Florida, Ohio, and the election, it was just heartbreaking realizing that not only had Kerry lost, but the GOP had picked up 4 seats in the Senate, adding two homophobes, and winning every close race except Colorado.

The next day, I was in such a pissed off mood, a conservative associate at work knew enough not to say anything about the election. Both asmallvictory and jj assured us liberals that there would be no theocracy, that abortion would still be legal, that well our fears were overblown. I personally had predicted that Bush's second term would be less worse than his first, but my dismay that next morning was strong, and it took a day or two for me to lick my wounds.

Now a year later, not only are Bush's polling numbers in the tank, but his legislative agenda is dead in the water, his Supreme Court nominees are not in the Scalia/Thomas strident mode, and outside of a foolish effort at signing emergency resuscitate orders there have been no bones thrown to the religious right - e.g. outlawing D&X abortion or anti-gay marriage constitutional amendment.

Mark Warner made a comment shortly after the election that a 51% approach to winning elections was not a good way to govern. At the time, I was still so mired in post-election gloom that I didn't agree with him, and thought that the GOP was going to continue to win all the key elections and just ram more unwanted legislation down our throats. But Warner's comment proved prescient. The problem with 51% elections is that you have to keep 100% of your coalition to pass legislation, and that's virtually impossible to do for any extended period, and especially for items affecting the third rail.

So my predictions for the future?

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