Wednesday, November 9, 2005

Tea Leaves

The election results are in.

  • The Democrats won governorships in New Jersey and Virginia.
  • Maine retained their gay-rights laws.
  • Texas passed a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage.
  • New York City re-elected Republican (heh-heh) mayor Michael Bloomberg.
  • California turned down all of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s ballot initiatives.
  • All eight members of the Dover, Pennsylvania school board that demanded “intelligent design” be included in the schools’ curriuculum were voted out of office.
  • There are a lot of other results in mayor races in cities around the country, including the defeat of the Democratic mayor in St. Paul, Minnesota who endorsed George W. Bush; Kwame Kilpatrick was re-elected in Detroit; in Toledo former mayor Carty Finkbeiner was returned to office, and voters in Ohio turned down election-reform initiatives.

    The Republicans will now pull out all the stops to change the subject (“Look at the kitty!”), they’ll say that the election of Democrats in Virgina and New Jersey were just local elections and have no impact on national politics, and then point to the re-election of Bloomberg as a good thing for Republicans. Ha. If the new governors of Virigina and New Jersey were Republicans it would be hailed as a ringing endorsement of the Republican agenda and the leadership of President Bush. But no matter how they spin it, they still got hosed. Mayor Bloomberg, a pro-choice, pro-gay-rights liberal, is a RINO (Republican in Name Only) and certainly doesn’t fit the mold of the White House / Tom DeLay GOP. The smackdown of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s initiatives in California bodes ill for his re-election chances next year, and the only thing that the Republicans can point to on a state level that is an endorsement of their policies is the shameful constitutional amendment in Texas that enshrines bigotry. There’s something to run on; vote for us — we bash queers! At least the people of Maine had the good sense to shoot down their referendum on that issue.

    Now that the Democrats are on a roll, they have to prove their worth and capitalize on them. If they want to treat yesterday’s elections as a mandate for change starting at the grassroots level, then that’s where they’re going to have to do the hard work.

    Still…for the moment…YIP YA!