I am so, so tempted to skip school and drink away my sorrows.
I knew Obama was going to win, of course. Any time we've had 8 years of one party, it's more likely than not that the other party will win the next go 'round. Save for when we reelected FDR a couple more times than was probably sane, I do not think we have ever had 12 years in a row of the same political party. At least, not in the 20th century.
So. Here we are. We've "made history" by electing the nation's first Black President. If I have to give a momentary nod to the race issue, I'll do it this way: I think it is at least as historically significant that we've elected the first-ever bi-racial President. (I've never, ever understood why mixed-race folks are expected to pick one race. Sheesh, I'm 88% white, and I generally don't ignore the other 12%.) Isn't the "one drop" rule racist? Wasn't it once used to hold down people with any amount of African ancestry in them?
I will also say unequivocally that we have not "moved beyond race," as has been claimed. Not when every single headline has some version of AMERICA ELECTS FIRST BLACK PRESIDENT. 'Cause, y'all, when you put BLACK in front of PRESIDENT, guess which you're giving more heft? Does Barack Obama not stand on his own merits?
This is the "no toss-ups" results map from Real Clear Politics.com. I am forced to note that it looks pretty evenly balanced between red & blue. And, while Obama kicked ass in a few states, it seems that at least half of the ones he won, he won by a margin of only 1% or 2%. Of course, this doesn't mean much of anything in the real world; it's more of an intellectual exercise to note it.
I don't think this is the end of the world, or even of the Union. I pray that President Bush will work closely with Senator Obama during the transition period, and hopefully bring home to him some of the realities of terrorism. That, or, if there is a "testing" of Obama by the rest of the world, I pray that it will pull his head down out of the clouds.
This is as much a Republican failure as a Democratic victory. We all know McCain barely even tried. We need to retrench, regroup, and go back to what made us a force to be reckoned with in the first place, which was not worrying about whether Jim Bob and Billy Bob wanted to get married! Chances are no one will agree with me on this one, but if we gave over on the gay marriage issue, we could revitalize this party (and really, encouraging the stability that gay marriage would bring to the gay community is a conservative value). There are a lot of gay conservatives, y'all. I talk to them every damn time I go to the bar. They're just as afraid of the federal government taking over their lives as thee and me, but they're more afraid of being forcibly shoved back in the closet by John Hagee and his ilk.
That aside, we have to win from the bottom up. We need to rethink not just who DOES support us, but who CAN support us. We need to quit ignoring groups of people we think we cannot reach. Make a damn case to college students about how lower taxes will benefit them. Tone down the anti-"entitlement" rhetoric a bit, and quit assuming that every person who gets TANF or food stamps is looking to game the system. Get our asses out there and talk to the black folks and the single moms and make a case for the fact that continued government nannying does not help them.
And if nothing else, we all need to listen to our Uncle Matt, mmkay? Let there be no repeat of the sniveling the Left proffered apres the last two elections.