Thursday, November 6, 2014

What do the Election Results Mean, Really?

Photo: Bob King/Duluth News Tribune
Yesterday, a friend who worked as an election judge on Tuesday posted the following on her Facebook page:
"Dear Republican Leadership,
I respectfully bring to your attention the concepts of Correlation and Causation. The fact that you "won" doesn't mean people like you. It means you got more votes (causation). People being pissed at Pres. Obama (correlation) has nothing to do with it.
Exhausted Election Judge
My reaction was, "YES!" Then I wondered, why do leaders in both parties jump to conclusions about something that if looked at logically would make no sense?  It's called "spin" of course, and in our current marketing/advertising/PR-saturated society, nearly everything that comes out of a politician's mouth is some kind of "spin."

So, in my opinion, the election results may not mean, at all, what the GOP thinks it does, as my friend pointed out.  They need to find out what their constituents want from them, as they always do, rather than jumping to conclusions or making assumptions that election results mean what they want them to mean. The Media likes to do this, too, which can just encourage the politicians, as I see it.

Full disclosure: I'm not a GOP supporter. To me, they are the political party of income inequality, gender inequality, and corporate tax loopholes. I'm not a Democrat either. But to me, they are the political party who strive to govern (right now), and have tried to resolve problems that have long existed in our society. They put the country first, not their own power. I suppose if I were elected as an Independent, I'd probably caucus with the Democrats...but with the option of finding the middle way, the compromise, a different angle, and a way through the gridlocked mess that now exists in our government.  There doesn't seem to be anyone capable or willing to do that now. 

I should think that the GOP Congress now needs to think hard about how it will proceed in January.  If it doesn't choose well, it could alienate the voters who put them in office.  I'm thinking specifically of the ACA, so "lovingly" called Obamacare, and that is currently working for people. Especially in Kentucky, Senator McConnell. Will they risk enraging the people who can finally afford medical insurance, or will they take the necessary steps to move the ACA in the direction of Medicare for Everyone, i.e. single payer medical insurance?  Will they force President Obama to become Vetoer in Chief?

Here's what I'd like to see happen: the GOP acknowledges that Obama has achieved some important things, and that to achieve more, they need to work together not against each other.  Whoever has a problem with Barack Obama -- for whatever reason -- needs to rise about that for the good of the country. I think President Obama has already taken the first step by inviting the GOP leadership from both the House of Representatives and the Senate over for a meeting on Friday.  Let's hope the GOP leadership responds well instead of 1) trying to dictate what will happen in the next two years or 2) continuing their former policy of saying "no" to everything the Democrats and President Obama proposed.

Here's what Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont posted on Facebook the day before the election:

I wonder if the GOP would be interested in achieving any of those goals in the next two years?

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