Bear in mind there was still some good news for progressives, in Colorado, Arizona, Deleware, Nevada, Maine, Connecticut, Vermont, Maryland, New York, Oregon, Florida, North Carolina, California...as DFA puts it:
While it was a tough night, we had a few important victories too. DFA 2010 Progressive Hero Barbara Boxer won. Public Option Heroes Michael Bennet, Kristen Gillibrand, Jared Polis, and Chellie Pingree all won without running away from their votes for Healthcare. Co-Chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus Raul Grijalva was in the fight of his life and won. In fact
94%97% of the rest of the Progressive Caucus also won (compared to only 47% of the Blue Dogs).
Florida amendments legally requiring fair redistricting of congressional districts -- instead of Republican-controlled gerrymandering -- won. The anti-environmental Proposition 23 in California, which could have rolled back some of the most important clean air laws in the country, was defeated. And bold progressive Peter Shumlin was elected the first Democratic Governor of Vermont since Howard Dean left office in 2002.
The fact is progressive heroes who lost last night like Russ Feingold and Alan Grayson became collateral damage in a toxic election environment created by weak leadership and corporate Democrats who refused to stand up and fight for real change. Progressives like Annie Kuster, Mary Jo Kilroy, and Tom Perriello ran some of the strongest grassroots campaigns in history, but were drowned out by unregulated corporate front groups that spent hundreds of millions to scare and lie to voters. [That's an important link.]
The biggest lesson from last night is actually pretty simple. For Democrats to win in the future, they need to fight for the people they represent and stop cutting deals to water down reform with the same corporate interests who will turn around and spend unlimited amounts of money to defeat Democrats year after year.
Good riddance, Blue Dogs.
(Also, my brother points out, a long-haired hippie kid just won the world series for San Francisco. In Texas. And with Bush Walker "I'm happy I won't be around when history judges me" and Bush Herbert watching. (Well, I enjoyed it.))
Also: No shit:
Marc Ambinder highlighted a fascinating statistic that we missed last night.
"Who's to blame for the economy? Bankers (34%), Bush (29%), Obama (24%). Of those who blame bankers, Republicans hold an 11 point advantage."
Readers of this blog will recall our reading of the bailout hustle. The defeat for Democrats no doubt began there, in accepting Rubinomics and the precedent of Bush's unconditional bailout without seriously re-messaging it (despite firing the heads of GM, and some luke-warm protections) together with a serious "JOBS BILL" and "TAX CUTS" (as Michael Moore, says, "stimulus" sounds like a disease, at least they watered it down).
How ironic then, that after giving one of the biggest tax cuts in history, Obama is the enemy and Wall Street is the big winner last night.
Especially Karl Rove's "American Crossroads" hedge fund palls.
If that's not incompetent messaging, I don't know what is.
Of course I'm not the only one who is furious with the DSCC and DCCC for ignoring Elaine Marshall and Ann Kuster, respectively, among lots of other electable, and essential bold progressives, while supporting Rethuglicans in Democrat disguise with millions of dollars and high profile visits, like a battered wife who just swallows her pain and principles and comes out to smile beside her husband for the company. That strategy is doomed to failure, even if you win. How does the Harry Truman saying go?
"Given a chance to vote for a Republican, or a Democrat who acts like a Republican most of the day, the voter will choose the real Republican every time!"
So, corporate right-wing Democrats lost. Progressives meanwhile, with a few very sad exceptions the blame for which sits partly on the DLC's lap and partly on "Citizens United", survived. Bold Progressives will show the Democrats how to fight. Join the PCCC.
Also, just for all those Tea-Baggers so ignorantly quick to claim that race has nothing to do with it: