As the elections end, everyone will be putting forth their ideas what it meant. I want to take a minute to go back to my last post on the importance of the economy. John Dickerson, in all of his level-headed glory, mentions some of these points buried in his recent article.
Picking it apart, it says “62 percent said the economy was the most important issue facing the country… ” 37 percent said the highest priority of Congress should be “spending to create jobs”. Let’s also look at some other recent polls, Gallup details that many more people blame Republican policies for the fault of the economy and not Obama.
After you distill all this information, what does the new Speaker of the House say? “We are witnessing a repudiation of Washington … a repudiation of Big Government”.
This is not a repudiation of Big Government. People are hurting, they want economic recovery, they want to make sure that everything’s going to be alright. Here we are, in a time of crisis, and the message that Republicans have is that we need less government. We need less help. All of the stalemates we’ve seen over the past 2 years? Republicans are taking their reelection as an affirmation of preventing the government from taking action. During their campaigns, some of these conservative politicians used Obama’s words of “change” and “reform” to actually mean, a continuation of a stalemate. A halt of policy action.
My humble opinion, is that for the most part, this is not a referendum on Democrats. Especially not against the government as a whole. People still clearly blame Republicans for the current economic problems, but in the end the mindset of the voter is “Economy Bad = Incumbents Bad”. While not the most pragmatic of thinking, this is what we’re left with.
It will be interesting to see how both party’s react. Let’s hope that instead of this threat of a stalemate, maybe Republicans will use their new found influence to actually help instead of hinder.