Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Mandate? I gotcha mandate right here!


Note to President Bush, Vice President Cheney and Karl Rove:

This is what a mandate looks like.

Democrats recaptured the House last night, defeating Republican incumbents in every region of the country, and were close to gaining control of the Senate in midterm elections dominated by war, scandal and President Bush's leadership.

By early this morning, Democrats had picked up more than two dozen Republican-held House seats without losing any of their own, putting Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) into position to become the nation's first female speaker.
The administration (which claimed mandates against all logic in 2000 and 2004)will undoubtedly claim that no mandate exists for the Democrats. They must make this claim. There is nothing left for them but sad, self-deceptive lies.

Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and their ilk will stumble onto the airwaves today full of fake cheer and false bravado. "Nope! Nothing wrong here," they will shout. They will assure their followers that in losing, the Republicans actually won. Look at all those conservative Democrats who got elected! America still wants conservatism!

They have nothing left to comfort them but their lies.

Now, they can settle into their natural state, that of an opposition movement. Limbaugh will resurrect the "America Held Hostage" jingle that he used to open his show every single day of the eight years that Bill Clinton was president. Sean Hannity will claim that the new Democratic congressional majority has already failed, despite the fact that it won't assume power until January.

That's fine. Let them hide behind trees and throw rocks. We will show them how to govern.

That's what you do with a mandate.


Well, that didn't take long.

Over at NRO's The Corner, Larry Kudlow has already put forward the meme that in losing, conservatives actually won. As I wrote above, "look at all those conservative Democrats!" Or, as Kudlow puts it:

Look at blue dog conservative Dem victories, and look at Northeast liberal GOP defeats. The changeover in the House may well be a conservative victory, not a liberal one. Blue dogs are rabid budget balancers. At tomorrow's news conference, President Bush should reach out to them, and to Republican base, with a spending limitation pay-as-you go proposal that gets to a balanced budget in a couple of years.
Whatever gets you through the night, Larry.