For a former politics junkie, I was less-engaged by the just-completed midterm elections than I have been in quite some time. Hence the minimal commentary in the run-up thereto. (Also, I’ve been very focused other writing.)
But here are my morning-after reactions:
- The one real disappointment for me of the night was Senator Feingold’s loss in Wisconsin. I really wish that the Democrats had lost a generic team player like Boxer or Murray and that one of the few civil libertarians in politics had managed to retain his seat.
- Leadership matters. Republicans nominated very right-wing candidates who seemed like plausible Senators in Florida and Pennsylvania. They won. They also nominated very right-wing candidates who seemed like lunatics in Nevada, Delaware and Alaska. They lost. (Well, Alaska’s not certain yet.) There is a lesson here: don’t nominate candidates who seem like lunatics. You would think this would be an easy lesson to learn.
- While I have no great expectations for the GOP-led House, a big swing is a good sign for American democracy. Personally, I think the GOP has essentially no ideas on how to fix what ails the American economy. But the Democrats have had nearly two years to convince America that they know what they are doing. They failed to convince. What should happen when the American people feel the governing party has failed is that the governing party loses a big election. They did. Good.
And, now we’ll see.