Can't say I'm not disappointed, saddened, disillusioned, upset, etc. But I'm licking my wounds and trying to hurry through all the stages of grief as quickly as possible. I think Bush is profoundly damaging our country's security and economic health, and I deeply worry what will happen with another 4 years of his leadership. No, I don't think he's stupid, but I don't think he is an incredibly poor and careless leader. Simply put, because he never bothers to lead. He just does.
If the last two elections tell us anything, its that this country is deeply divided on what direction to take. The results from last night are a mirror of 2000. That year, Gore edged out slightly. This year, Bush edged out slightly. But really, its enlightening how little has really changed. The problem is, Bush and the Republicans who control Congress refuse to acknowledge this. They have acted like they had a massive mandate to fundamentally alter society for 4 years after losing an election. I can hope that their misplaced confidence simply cannot get any worse, but that remains to be seen. Nevertheless, you can count on them governing as if they enjoyed massive support from the country when that simply isn't remotely so.
Look at the results, and really it looks very bad from the GOP. Everyone is crowing about how well they did in the Senate, but looking at the numbers betrays the truth. They picked up seats by winning a lot of close races in states that shouldn't have been close. States where even Bush dominated. North Carolina, South Carolina, Kentucky, Oklaholma, South Dakota, Alaska. These are states the Democrats shouldn't have had a prayer, but the GOP candidates largely only eeked out victories. That is no mandate. Indeed, it only shows how deeply partisan and divided our country is. But the GOP agenda won't reflect any of that. They will rush out with a radical and harmful agenda. I only hope that these results embolden the Democrats in the legislature to use their strong minority to their advantage and agressively confront the Republican designs for what they are.
Josh Marshall posts an excellant post mortem on all this which shows us all why those who believe in progressive causes must not be weakened by the elections results. Not simply because they just weren't bad at all, but moreover because we need to build on our strength and build for the future. Conservatives have been doing it for 40 years to get where they are now, but we are starting from a much stronger position. Don't get me wrong. I'll be licking my wounds for a little while longer, but we must keep fighting because we will win.