The Alabama Moderate

Painting the Red State Purple.

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Thoughts on the 2006 Midterm Elections

Posted by ALmod on November 8, 2006

I’ve covered Alabama’s election, now I want to talk about the country as a whole. Honestly, I wasn’t expecting the Dems to have as big a victory as they did. I expected a win in the House and an even split at best in the Senate. For the Dems to win the Senate, they were only allowed to lose one Senate seat. As I’m writing this, they are a defeated George Allen away from a simple majority. (Technically, they’ll have 49 seats with two Dem-leaning independents.)

Part of me wonders what is coming next. So far, this promises to be interesting, and the newly elected haven’t even begun their terms. I figured that it would at least be February before anything changed, but then I turned on Fox News. Donald Rumsfeld is stepping down!

Over at Alablawg, this election was summed up the best way I’ve ever heard it:

“I’’m really hoping the Democrats take congress. It isn’’t that I think they will do a good job. It’’s more like choosing Raymond ‘“Rain Man’” Babbit over Hannibal Lecter to babysit your kids.”

Yep. That pretty much says it. I guess that’s why I’m happy to see things end up the way that they did. If Allen concedes, the Dems will have a one vote majority in the Senate and a nice majority in the House. They still have to get through a Republican president with veto powers. Considering that they have such a small majority, they’ll actually have to work together to get their legislation passed. Maybe it will turn out better quality legislation. If it doesn’t, there’s a small enough majority that we can easily remedy that in two years.

Do I expect this to solve all of our problems? Absolutely not. I don’t expect them to get half of their agenda pushed through in the next two years. That doesn’t mean that they can’t do something, anything. Doing so would be a vast improvement for the Democrats. Nothing scares me more than the words “Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi” except for maybe “Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert.” It’s not that Pelosi doesn’t scare me. It’s just that she scares me less than Hastert.

I realizedlised that we could be well on our way to having our first female president, but I’m not talking about Hillary Clinton. I think that the Dems will get a little too big for their britches and go after President Bush, Vice President Cheney, and the cabinet. If they get them all removed from office, Pelosi is next in line. Yikes! I don’t think it will happen, but it’s a scary thought, nonetheless.

People are talking about impeachment, though. I think Rumsfeld saw it coming, too. That’s why he left. It’s going to put him in a decent position to be pardoned by President Bush just in case anything happens. And while I believe that Bush deserves to be removed from office, I think that impeachment could be the single dumbest move that the Democrats make should they choose to do so. They’ve been given an opportunity to prove themselves. There is only so much that you can do in two years. If they are bogged down in impeachment proceedings, they’ll slow themselves down.

The thing that I find most encouraging is the response from China. They’re upset because they believe that the election of a Democratic majority will mean that Americans will stop paying for Chinese goods and labor and start paying for American goods and labor. They’re upset because they believe that Democrats are more likely to act in the better interests of American lower and middle classes and small businesses rather than the interests of large corporations.

Things should get more interesting around February or March. I haven’t figured out yet whether the Dems will screw it up (again) or redeem themselves, but anything could happen.

UPDATE: Altoid links to this post here.


3 Responses to “Thoughts on the 2006 Midterm Elections”

  1. Altoid said

    I don’t think Bush will have the balls to veto the minimum wage increase that’s coming. Pelosi has already said impeachment is not on the agenda as it would not benefit the country. I didn’t know about the Chinese, but you’re right about that being a good thing.

  2. Don said

    I posted this on Between the Links, but I think if fits in here, too:

    I feel that a lot of conservative Republicans and independents (the determining voters in many instances) rejected Republicans who have supported Bush’s recent policies on several fronts and had no other choices to vote for than Democratic candidates. I don’t view this as their embracing the Democratic agenda. If the Democrats don’t come up with a real agenda that seems to be putting the country back on the right track their control of Congress may be short-lived.

    ONE ADDED COMMENT: I think that in the end this can be good for the Republicans in Congress, too, because it will make them realize how far they have strayed from their supporters and perhaps they will listen to them more in the future.

  3. The Alabama Moderate said

    Don, I think you’re absolutely right, and I’ll tell you why. You just described me. I actually have considered myself for a long time to be a conservative Republican. It was only after the neocon movement that I started to refer to myself as a “Moderate” or a “Libertarian.” They just became a red flavor of what GTL likes to call a “nanny-state liberal.”

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