Okay, it was a fascinating evening. From a poly sci standpoint, this was a great election.
Several thoughts come to mind..
#1 The GOP is elated and confused at the same time. Why? Cause now they actually have to do something. Eric Cantor was interviewed by Wolf Blitzer last night who pressed him on WHAT exact cuts he was going to make to government. Cantor kept repeating 100 billion over ten years, but was unable, or unwilling to articulate exactly HOW they are getting to that figure.
John Boehner's tearful moment was the most disingenuous, comical thing of the evening. If you had ever met the man, you would realize within a second that that was staged. In his interviews he has stated many platitudes about the American people, and how they trust him, yada, yada, yada, but, like Cantor, when pressed on what cuts he needs to do, he is unable to answer at this time.
#2 Obama has failed in a more massive way than I thought possible. He was downright indignant in his interview today, and unwilling to concede that perhaps he might have been wrong. This better change, or he will most assuredly be a one term President.
His biggest failure is the one I never saw coming with him....COMMUNICATION. In uncertain financial times, tough times, with people losing their jobs, an economy struggling like a newborn horse to get on it's fight, people are scared. For right or for wrong, people are scared, frightened, and he did nothing to help assure people. In these difficult circumstances, people need comfort, they need re-assurance that things will be okay..
Where were Obama's fireside chats? Where were bi-weekly TV addresses to the nation taking tough questions, and trying to re-assure the populace? Had he done this, I think we might have seen a very different outcome last night, but we'll never know.
#3 The Tea Party has rolled in, they officially have candidates in office. From a poly sci standpoint, it will be interesting to see how they, and more specifically, the TP base reacts when they realize that they simply cannot achieve about 80% of their goals.....
What will they do? What will the elected TP officials do when they run into the machine that is DC? It changes everyone, and is akin to running full speed into a brick wall. It is immovable, and massive. What will happen to the TP candidates when lobbying money begins to come their way? How will the base react? Are they going to vote for the debt increase?
For example, healthcare will not be repealed. Not now, and not in 2012, even with a GOP administration. The bill is polling fairly well.
I DO see some tweaking of the bill, and some amendments to it. Likely interstate insurance sales, tort reform, and possibly an attempt to remove the mandate.
Of course, that will only hasten the collapse of the US healthcare system, so part of me hopes that they do it, but it will be interesting to see.
I'm getting a BIG bowl of popcorn, this is going to be a fascinating 2 years of political history to watch unfold before our eyes