As supporters of both President Barack Obama and fmr. Governor Mitt Romney waited with bated breath as each state and its electoral votes were called, I could not help but get an overwhelming feeling that America had won! After months of campaigning, an onslaught of a combined $800 million in negative ads, an untold sum of “dark money” from the so-called Super PAC’s (thank you Citizen’s United) and down-right lies, the American people “trump tight” played their political wildcard, the vote.
Many on the right confidently assumed that they had worn the shine once enjoyed by President Obama in the early days of his presidency off. They were counting on voter discontent and shameful voter-suppression efforts pushed largely by republican governors across the country to convince blacks, Latinos, young-people, and left-leaning undecided voters to become apathetic, abandon the political process, and stay home. At the same time, they actively pursued the white male voting block by trying to make Obama the sole cause for an economy that everyone agrees has been stubbornly slow to recover. And not to be outdone, the wing-nuts (every party has them) frequently framed the president as other—“not one of us” despite him releasing his long-form birth certificate from the state of Hawaii.
Well… as we all now know, despite the many efforts of Karl Rove, super PACs, billionaire donors Sheldon Adelson and David & Charles Koch, Bullshit Mountain (aka Fox News), the DONALD sideshow, and a host of others in the far-right echo chamber, President Obama and the Democrats in the Senate and the House of Representatives dominated in Tuesday night’s elections. They held the presidency, expanded control in the Senate, and even picked up a few once safe Republican House seats. This represented a sound rejection of the most extreme far-right candidates, some of whom were favored to win their races until famously tripping up on ideas such as legitimate God-sanctioned rape (see Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock). America also had the pleasure of saying farewell to two Tea Party favorites… Joe “owes back child-support” Walsh lost to Iraq war-Veteran, Tammy Duckworth, by 10 points, and the incomparable, homophobic, Islamophobic, dirty-romance writer and all-around jerk Allen West, who despite losing to his Democratic challenger Patrick Murphy by roughly 2,500 votes—still refuses to concede the race citing ‘irregularities’. After 32 straight losses, voters in Maine, and Maryland, and (probably when the votes are all counted) Washington state have all approved marriage equality at the ballot box. And finally, Scott Brown, the “Shot Heard Round the World,” was proved a misfire by most accounts as Massachusetts progressive darling Elizabeth Warren walloped him with a lopsided victory that he didn’t see coming. But should have.
This of course, is indicative of a larger problem within this new Republican Party: facts. They really are stubborn things. And just wishing them away do not by virtue of the wish make them go away. The decision to do away with facts was made long before Mitt Romney, but it persists today. Republicans and Mitt Romney, in their attempt to deliver on their stated goal of making Barack Obama a one-term president, calculated that it did not serve their interest to openly acknowledge what many Americans could already feel:
As conservatives pick up the pieces of a party obliterated by the kamikaze mission known as the Tea Party, I hope that they reckon with this little truth: America is not grandpa’s country anymore. In fact, it never was. White-male dominance is a thing of the past and must give way to an era of respect and compassion for all people regardless of gender, sexual preference, religion, class, and whatever other categories we use to identify ourselves. I understand this has been a problem for the Tea Party controlled GOP. Their own intransigence to governing was proven to be driven by a willingness to take a wrecking ball to the entire country in an effort to “get their country back” from President Barack Obama, and this was laid bare for all to see. Their plan was to deny the president any accomplishments and the people of any hope, and to cloud the reality of a resurgent America with constant cries of doom, just around the corner. They would declare that the recovery was not fast enough. Then proceed to do everything in their power to slow it down. They would disengage from large parts of the electorate that did not represent the corporate establishment, calling us lazy leaches looking for a handout. In their world, all of this baloney should have worked, and it may have was it not for binders full of women, gays, the 47%, bayonets, and horses.
On Tuesday November 8, 2012 the math was clear—America won!