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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Waterloo or Watertown?

That's a lot of red in that New York Times map of Blue Massachusetts.

And since I've long been a believer that perception is reality, the reality is an ugly one of Barack Obama -- not to mention Deval Patrick and a host of local Democrats.

The reality is that the GOP, rejected by voters in the last two national elections, set about on a campaign to drag the Democrats down with them. And in Scott Brown's convincing win over Martha Coakley yesterday, they have succeeded.

The Republicans have once again been rewarded for their standard position -- do nothing. During eight years of the Bush-Cheney. they did nothing about the economy save passing tax cuts for the rich. They did nothing about reining in the cost of health care. They did nothing about regulating the financial excesses of Wall Street. They did nothing about managing the budget surplus left by Clinton -- except to blow it up in oceans of debt.

And for one year after losing the keys to the White House they did nothing to work with the new majority, preferring the now famous tactics uttered by South Carolina Sen. Jim Demint. Voters short on patience and long on temper expected miracles in a year, the ability to clean up eight years of messes in record time.

And in the process created yet another mess.

I'm not sure what will change after yesterday's vote. It's doubtful the GOP will change what appears to be a successful tactic of sitting on their hands. It's easier to bloviate than it is to legislate.

In Massachusetts, the results should send icy chills down the spine of Deval Patrick. After all, he is the only Democratic incumbent with a serious challenge -- although the GOP might now be able to raise a few quality candidates for the other constitutional offices.

What will be interesting to see is whether the party can also start fielding legislative candidates and begin to finally take on the source of the local rot -- and anger -- the Great and General Court.

For a political observer, the next year will not be lacking for things to write about. For a citizen concerned about the gridlock -- fostered by the 2010 strategy equivalent of what an Edward J. King crony once described as "putting all the hate groups in one pot in letting it boil" -- it will be ugly.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Perhaps "the source of the local rot -- and anger -- the Great and General Court" is one reason Scott won, also.

January 20, 2010 6:14 AM  
Blogger Outraged Liberal said...

No question in my mind that is is one of the major reasons.

January 20, 2010 6:41 AM  
Blogger sco said...

Hey, Watertown went for Martha Coakley 61%-38%! Don't blame us!

January 20, 2010 7:52 AM  
Blogger Brian Flaherty said...

Charlie Manning, GOP consultant, said on channel 5 last night that he thinks Patrick will drop out. What do you think?

January 20, 2010 8:18 AM  
Blogger Quriltai said...

I'd mention that voters expected miracles from Obama (and Deval) partially because the messianic nature of their campaigns all but promised miracles. Together/yes we can do anything.

January 20, 2010 8:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A year is one-forth of a term and long enough to have acted on at least ONE of his promises. But Gitmo is active, Iraq has our soldiers, healthcare debate is partisan behind closed doors, and he sent MORE soldiers to Afghanistan. Many Independents don't want terrorists tried in the US, the deficit to explode, or a HYPED stimulus that isn't working.

January 20, 2010 11:45 AM  
Blogger Outraged Liberal said...

Sorry sco, you were the victim of literary license. Thank you Watertown.

Brian -- Charlie is great at predictions. But I suspect this one doesn't have legs.

Anon 11:45, I think Quriltal answered you as well as I could. Add to that it took Bush eight years to create the mess and Congress is the best bunch of obstructionists lobbyist money can buy.

I'd say the deficit was exploded after Clinton left office with a surplus. And the stimulus is working, The problem is the damage was even deeper than we realized.

January 20, 2010 7:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How long before Barack "owns" the problems or will you just keep saying things were worse than we thought. Just like Deval blaming Mitt, how many years? I would like to see Brown sworn in and change his affiliation to Independent, and a bunch of blue dog Democrats would join him at this point.

January 26, 2010 9:30 AM  
Blogger Mikhail Silverwood said...

Why didn't the Massachesetts just vote independent?

January 28, 2010 7:56 PM  

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