As much as last week’s election results are frustrating for conservatives, there is also some good news.
Thanks largely to the Democrats running to Urbana in 2011, Republicans picked up nine more seats in the Indiana House of Representatives for an astonishing 69-31 majority to go along with the supermajority we already have in the State Senate. Republicans have run the table in Indiana.
As far as national election results, have we really lost the country in only two years? The big red tide of 2010 – an election where people turned out to stop Obama’s agenda – actually happened. That was not a dream.
The fact of the matter is that it is very difficult to unseat an incumbent President. Of the last eleven Presidents before Obama who were up for re-election, we’ve only unseated 3 of them – Ford, Carter and Bush 41. It is very unusual, historically, for an incumbent President to lose.
Gerald Ford’s defeat in 1976 was very unusual for obvious reasons, and when George H.W. Bush was defeated in 1992, the challenger who unseated him got only 43% of the popular vote.
There are other positive signs to consider. This is not 2008 and the Democrats do not have a supermajority in Congress. We still hold the House of Representatives, which can be a roadblock to any further bad policy by Obama.
As far as some of our losses, McCaskill would have lost if not for Akin’s stupid and antifactual comment about women’s bodies and rape. Richard Mourdock would have probably won if not for bringing predestination theology into the race. And let’s not forget that Joe Donnelly pretends to be a “pro-life” and “conservative” Democrat. The Democrats could not have won with a traditional liberal Democrat.
In addition to our dominating majorities in the state of Indiana, we have Republican majorities in a number of state legislatures and a bunch of Republican governors.
Yes, this is frustrating. Yes, I am discouraged by Obama being re-elected. But now is not the time to give up. Obama won by demonizing Mitt Romney, who got fewer votes than John McCain did four years ago. For some reason, many Republicans who voted in 2008 simply did not show up for Romney. Had Hurricaine Sandy not hit and allowed Obama to shore up his image, we may have Romney as President-elect right now.
Even better, we were about 380,000 votes away from a Romney presidency. Had a few hundred thousand more Republicans voters turned out spread across Ohio, Virginia, Florida and Colorado we would have have President Romney. If we are going to elect a Republican in 2016, we must figure out how to get those voters back to the polls.
We can win in 2014 and 2016 and there is reason for optimism. The mid-term elections for second-term Presidents are almost always bad for the party in power and as more of Obama’s destructive agenda is implemented people will sour on him and his party. We have an opportunity to win simply by bringing Republicans back to the polls and reaching out to minorties with our social and economic policies. Now is not the time to give up. Now is the time to fight harder!