Wednesday, November 03, 2010

A Baffling Turn

I don’t want to spend the whole day excerpting material from Steve Benen’s excellent Political Animal column on the Washington Monthly Web site. But I thought this summation of his thoughts following yesterday’s midterm elections was worth passing along--and it mirrors my own disappointments:
I’ve received some very nice notes today from readers wanting to know how I’m feeling today. In truth, I wouldn’t say I’m disappointed, but that’s only because I largely expected the results we received.

Instead, I’m frustrated. I’m frustrated about some exceptional lawmakers losing their jobs for no good reason. I’m frustrated about the role of secret money in the elections. I’m frustrated that there’s so much idiocy in the discourse--people think Obama raised taxes, bailed out Wall Street, and socialized health care, all of which is completely at odds with reality--and that too many people believe it. I’m frustrated about voters saying they want all kinds of things--less gridlock, fewer candidates beholden to special interests--and then deliberately choosing the opposite.

I’m frustrated that, after two years of digging out of a ditch Republicans put us in, the country is ready to take the next productive step forward, and now that’s impossible. I’m frustrated that the economy desperately needs additional investments to create jobs, but that’s impossible, too. I’m frustrated that Republican leaders seem to be making no real effort to hide the fact that they prioritize destroying the president over literally everything else.

But most of all, I’m frustrated that there are no meaningful consequences for successes and failures. Republicans began last year as an embarrassed and discredited minority, and proceeded to play as destructive a role as humanly possible as Democrats tried to clean up their mess. GOP officials refused to take policymaking seriously; they refused to work in good faith; they refused to offer coherent solutions; they even refused to accept responsibility for their own catastrophic mistakes.

They’ve proven themselves wholly unprepared to govern, but have been rewarded with power anyway. It’s ... frustrating.
You will find Benen’s full post here.

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