Wow, it has been some time since my last post, which is the cause of many things, of which I will not name. But, something very significant happen last night–election day November 2, 2010, which has brought me out of the woodwork. The Republican party won a major electoral victory, which makes them the majority party in the House of Representatives, and won enough seats in the Senate to make it even more difficult to pass legislation–as if it wasn’t difficult before last night. The cause of this Republican take over, to me, depends on what side of the political spectrum you reside. Republicans seem to suggest that their win was because voters felt President Obama, and his Democratic majority went to far with their legislation, and didn’t listen to the voters. On the other hand, Democrats seem to blame the Republican take over on secret money (there is some basis for that argument since this election season saw an unprecedented amount of campaign contributions totaling $4 billion), President Obama and the Democrats not going far enough with their legislation (not being liberal enough), and voters just taking out their frustration on the economy on the political party in power. All of which could be true depending on how you spin it. However, polling has shown that the economy was at the forefront of everyone’s mind this election season, which means it was the economy stupid. It is as simple as that. The economy, for the normal people–not the CEOs, banks, or politicians–is horrible, to put it plainly (9.6% unemployment, and 17% real unemployment does not bode well for the political party in power). The average person does not know the ins and outs of President Obama’s health insurance reform legislation, stimulus,and financial reform–the big three. Nor does the average person follow politics or public policy close enough to know about the smaller pieces of legislation passed by President Obama, and the Democrat majority in Congress, which include: Ted Kennedy’s national service legislation, and the expansion of the Children’s Health Insurance Program to four million more kids, and new regulations on tobacco, and the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. All of which, when broken down to the specific parts of the legislation, and aren’t heard through misinformation and fear-mongering, poll very well with the voters–when you ask someone if it is a good thing that someone can no longer be denied care because of a pre-existing condition, they approve overwhelmingly.
In conclusion, this election was not a referendum on President Obama, his legislation, or anything else dealing with politics or public policy. Especially considering the approval rating for congress is at an all time low of 9%, voters don’t trust either party, but in a two-party system there is no other choice but the other party. This election season had to do with jobs, jobs, jobs, and will continue to be about jobs, jobs, jobs, until the economy turns around. We just have to stay the course, focus, and persevere , things will get better (hopefully).