January 23, 2010

RealClearPolitics - The Meaning of Brown

RealClearPolitics - The Meaning of Brown

Charles Krauthammer in his trademark incisive style correctly analyzes Republican Scott Brown's victory in Massachusetts in the race against Democrat Martha Coakley to fill the vacant Kennedy seat in the Senate. Registered Democrats in the state outnumber Republicans three to one, so it's unarguable that Brown's win was largely because half of MA voters who are undeclared independents, Republicans and some cross-over Democrats have had enough. In his victory speech on Tuesday, January 19, Brown specifically thanked those independent voters. By all accounts, he ran a brilliant campaign compared to Coakley's croaker. It seems that Obama's campaigning for Democrat candidates in these special elections is the kiss of death (Virginia, New Jersey, and now 'blue' Massachusetts).

This incredible victory is more than a shot across the bow of TeamObama's ship of state. It is a targeted broadside and a direct hit at the waterline of the Democrat galleon because it was aimed directly at TeamObama's unpopular policies and tactics. Whether that ship will take on yet more water from the voters' ire in November remains to be seen, but chances for many upset victories are better than even. That will largely depend on improvements in the economy and employment and whether Republicans can field strong candidates. The 10 months to election day is an eternity on any political voyage.

Krauthammer says:

"Brown ran on a very specific, very clear agenda. Stop health care. Don't Mirandize terrorists. Don't raise taxes; cut them. And no more secret backroom deals with special interests.

These deals -- the Louisiana purchase, the Cornhusker kickback -- had engendered a national disgust with the corruption and arrogance of one-party rule. The final straw was the union payoff -- in which labor bosses smugly walked out of the White House with a five-year exemption from a ("Cadillac") health insurance tax Democrats were imposing on the 92 percent of private-sector workers who are not unionized.

The reason both wings of American liberalism -- congressional and mainstream media -- were so surprised at the force of anti-Democratic sentiment is that they'd spent Obama's first year either ignoring or disdaining the clear early signs of resistance: the tea-party movement of the spring and the town-hall meetings of the summer. With characteristic condescension, they contemptuously dismissed the protests as the mere excrescences of a redneck, retrograde, probably racist rabble."

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