Thursday, November 4, 2010

Republicans Have a DIfferent Mandate Than They May Think They Have

The Republicans won nationally on November 2. Well, they won the House of Representatives but not the Senate. They needed independents, and they got them in a lot of races but in others they didn't.

Can Republicans win again in 2012? That depends, because it took a lot of independent voters across the country to win in November 2010. Those independents may stick with the Republicans, or may go back to Barack Obama and the Democrats as they did here in Massachusetts in November 2010.

So listen up Republicans. The narrative that is running around in your head is not why you won. The narratives that are important are the ones running around in all the heads of all the independent voters all around the country.

Looking back over my adult lifetime, here is the narrative I remember:

1980 - Jimmy Carter is a downer, Ronald Reagan is an upper
1982 - Ronald Reagan maybe isn't working out
1984 - Ronald Reagan is working, let's try that again
1986 - Ronald Reagan could use some more oversight from Democrats
1988 - Mike Dukakis is a guy who will raise our taxes
1990 - Stay the course with the Gulf War looming
1992 - George Bush broke his promise on no new taxes
1994 - Bill Clinton let Democrats in Congress raise taxes again
1996 - Bob Dole is too old and his pal Newt Gingrich is too cranky
1998 - Shut up already about Monica Lewinsky
2000 - Something is just a little off about Al Gore
2002 - George Bush needs a little more support in the war effort
2004 - John Kerry won't bring the war to a quick and successful end
2006 - George Bush isn't bringing the war to an end either
2008 - George Bush put the economy into the ditch
2010 - Barack Obama hasn't gotten the economy out of the ditch

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