Thursday, November 10, 2011

As Goes Mississippi, Maine, Arizona, Kentucky and Ohio?

Okay, so it wasn't a blowout midterm, it doesn't approach the Tea Party rout of 2010, but I think the Democrats can call Election Day 2011 as one for the Win Column! For the most part, few of those supporting the issues on the right did not carry the night. What seems amazing to me is that none of these states are seen as Democratic bastions, but have been either Republican or swing states. President Obama won only Maine and Ohio of this group.

So what was the Tally?
  • Mississippi defeated the poorly written, ill-conceived "personhood" amendment by 16 points. (Supported by Romney, Cain, Huckabee and Perry!) Okay, they also elected another Republican Governor to replace Haley Barbour, but I guess we cannot win them all! Of course the new governor also claimed the devil was opposed to the "personhood amendment," so go figure! But this is another well-deserved defeat for this anti-woman, anti-birth control, anti-abortion measure.
  • Maine repealed the restrictions on voter registration and the same day voter sign up ban which had been instituted by the new Republican Governor who was elected in 2010. (You may remember the Governor was the one who took down the historical pro labor mural union supporters had placed in a state office building prior to his election!)
  • Arizona recalled the State Senate leader who had sponsored their draconian immigration restrictions -- replaced him with another Republican, who had opposed the strictness of the regulations. (One group supporting him was Arizona's for-profit private prison systems. Any conflicts there?) Do you think some Arizona politicians have begun to realize that there are lots of Hispanic registered voters in the state? (The total is expected to be about 25% in 2012.)
  • Kentucky re-elected a popular Democratic Governor voted for the overwhelming majority of his state officers. (This, if you remember, was the state which defeated the establishment Republican supported by Minority Leader Senator Mitch McConnell last year and selected Tea Party favorite Rand Paul, son of Ron Paul. Apparently a state agriculture commissioner favored by McConnell was elected, but that's all he got.)
  • And finally, in Ohio, residents voted resoundingly against the newly imposed state worker restrictions on unions, bargaining and retirement rights. This ill-conceived law was petitioned to the ballot box by a "law recall drive" yielding over a million signatures. With widespread advertising by national conservative groups and favored by many on the Republican campaign trail, this anti-worker law was fiercely opposed by union members, police, fire fighters and teachers as well as national Democrats.
As more negative rumors swirl around Herman Cain and women are coming forward with more accusations of sexual misconduct, his candidacy seems about to implode. Mitt Romney, who has tried to have it all ways by supporting both sides of many of the issues noted above, seems to have melted whatever core he had once demonstrated. Rick Perry, after his really weird, giddy speech in New Hampshire, is now chiming in with a "me too" on the same conservative issues. He is, as was said on MSNBC tonight, really underwhelming, and not only in the debates. Ron Paul seems without compassion and is stuck on slow. Some say the pendulum on the right is now swinging toward Newt Gingrich. Newt, whose negatives were very high not long ago (remember the accounts at Tiffany's?), still is undisciplined and has been desultory in his fund raising efforts. He still cannot personify the stump speaker manner necessary for the campaign trail. But Republicans, who have yet to warm to Romney, are beginning to run out of options as Bachman and Santorum are still not stirring many passions. Huntsman is still swirling around the periphery of the debates and the issues, but seemed most genuine in his call for Cain to address his accusations.

What do you think about the ballot measures? Do you agree that they foretell a re-energized electorate? Do you think some Republican Governors have overreached?

1 comment:

  1. Without question the ballot issues overturned efforts to overreach, but there's little else left for Republicans to accomplish.

    They have harvested all low hanging fruit. The only things left are proverbial third rails they can grab hold of. This is a problem the right fails to grasp. The more successful you are... the more dirty tricks you pull to skew things your way, they greater the majority grows that is working against you.

    This will be one WILD pendulum swing.
    The last one got us Obama Care.
    Will the next bring us the public option? A living wage?

    Granted, we may not see this swing until the Republicans get 51 Republican Senators who vote in every awful idea that comes to their twisted little minds. 2014 could be the end of short-lived Republican dreams for a decade.

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