Sunday, November 23, 2014

The Midterm Miracles

By Burt Prelutsky
Perhaps because I define myself as a optimistic pessimist or a pessimistic optimist, I was blindsided by the election results. As much time as I devoted to poring over the Senate races, I just couldn’t see how the GOP could wind up with more than 51.
Perhaps, best of all, the liberals can’t carry off their narrative, which was that they lost the Senate only because of the map. Anticipating defeat, they wanted to pretend it was simply because they happened to have so many Senate seats at risk in certain Republican-leaning states. But, thanks to God and in good part to Barack Obama, who has done so very much to destroy the Democratic brand, we even won gubernatorial races in Illinois, Maryland and Massachusetts.
In the end, it wasn’t the map that defeated the Democrats, it was the American people. It was as if the Democrats went to a doctor for a physical and were told they had a terminal disease. And when they said they wanted a second opinion, the doctor told them they were also stupid.
One of my favorite races took place in Florida where Charlie Crist lost in his race for governor, meaning he can now get back to doing what he was born to do; namely work on his year-round tan and romance rich elderly widows.
But the list of great things that happened on November 4th is endless. For instance, political legacies took a thumping. In Georgia, where Sam Nunn’s daughter and Jimmy Carter’s grandson were running for the Senate and the governorship, they both lost. In Colorado, Udall lost. In Louisiana, Landrieu will lose in the December runoff. She always was going to lose, but thanks to a Tea Party candidate sucking off votes from the winner of the GOP primary, she will now be running when everyone in the state knows she will be a complete nonentity in the minority party. Even when she chaired the Senate Energy Committee, she was unable to get Obama to sign off on the Keystone pipeline, so who needs her keeping a seat warm in a GOP-controlled Senate?
Certainly among the priceless memories of the election was seeing Illinois electing a Republican governor in spite of both Obamas showing up to campaign for loser Pat Quinn, and seeing Arkansas elect a Republican governor and senator in spite of both Clintons campaigning for losers Mike Ross and Mark Pryor. As the four of them have shown in the past, their coattails are even shorter than those of Batman’s arch nemesis, the Penguin.
On Election Night, one of the highlights was listening to the various Fox News contributors, including Charles Krauthammer, Bret Baier and Steve Hayes, taking turns ridiculing Juan Williams after he insisted it wasn’t a wave election for the GOP. Come to think of it, I don’t know who took the final results the hardest – Barack Obama, Harry Reid or Juan Williams.
Speaking of Fox, I sometimes amuse myself by imagining what the Fox males would look like if, like their female colleagues, they all had to dye their hair blonde. I guarantee that even Geraldo Rivera, Alan Colmes, Juan Williams and Bob Beckel, are a lot easier to take if you can pull it off.
Although I’m sure the Democrats will try to play down the results, insisting as they have all along, in concert with the NY Times, that the elections were about nothing. But they were actually about quite a bit. For one thing, it was about stopping Obama in his tracks before he succeeded in totally destroying America. By all rights, the voters should have come to that conclusion a lot sooner – preferably when they had the option of Mitt Romney – but better late than never.
It was also about the GOP learning how to come up with candidates who didn’t embarrass themselves or the Party. This time around, unlike 2012, we weren’t stuck with anyone insisting she wasn’t a witch or a couple of nincompoops who tried explaining the difference between legitimate and illegitimate rape.
After guaranteeing that Rob Maness would be the shocker of the evening by defeating both Mary Landrieu and Bill Cassidy for the Senate seat in Louisiana -- and his winding up a distant third, Sarah Palin proved that allowing one’s ego to trump reality is a really dumb idea whether you’re shooting elk or trying to elect unelectable candidates.
One of the major takeaways from the elections was that even low-information voters don’t like being lied to, whether it’s Obama’s claiming we could keep our doctors and our medical insurance and that Republicans hate women or his stooges in Congress, all of whom have had their lips glued to his rump for nearly six years, suddenly claiming they couldn’t pick the schmuck out of a police lineup.
For my part, I have been euphoric ever since the 4th. Living, as I do, in California, jubilation is not an emotion I’m accustomed to experiencing in the aftermath of elections.
In spite of the fact that I don’t drink and I don’t smoke pot, I feel as if I’m floating on air. I’m not even on Cloud 9, people, I’m on Cloud 78. The truth is I can barely see Cloud 9 from this high up.
[First published in the November 2014 newsletter of the Southern California Republican Women and Men]