Long time ago, Chicago elected Harold Washington, a black man, as mayor, the first black mayor of Chicago. He died in office, and his successor was Eugene Sawyer, a black man, the second black mayor of Chicago.
When Richard Daley was running for mayor, he slipped and said Chicago needed a "white mayor."
When the press pounced on this like a pack of starving wolves, Daley said they were misquoting and what he said was Chicago needed a "wet mayor." And when asked what the fuck that meant, he changed the subject.
At least Daley recognized that saying things like that was very very bad. But not the Romney Republicans. They are continuing to prove that we made the right choice in not voting for Mittens.
Mittens' campaign basically boiled down to, "A black man can't be president!" Now, in the weeks since the election, the chant has become, "Only a black man can be president!" Because demographics are now so fragmented, appealing to white upper class men doesn't work anymore. Oh, what a shame, everybody who can vote their conscience is doing so!
Basically, the R's want to continue to be exclusionary and use that as the path to dominance, even when it shoots them in the foot. After pissing off blacks, single mothers, Hispanics, gays, middle class people, poor people, just about everyone, the R's still found another group to piss off, Americans with disabilities. Before the Senate was a UN treaty declaring how people with disabilities are to be treated in the world. Basically, it's the law we currently have on the books, so nothing for us would change in the least, but other countries around the world would have to step things up. Passage required a 2/3 vote to pass, 67 votes for. Final score? 61-38. John McCain (R - Arizona) and Kelly Ayotte (R - NH) backed it and lobbied for their party to support it for two reasons: 1) It was a human rights issue, and 2) it would make the R's look even worse than they already do. Two R's initially supported it but voted against it when the time came. Those voting against it said it would be ceding countries' sovereignty to the UN. OK, yes, the UN is notoriously anti-US. But this had nothing to do with sentiments about the US of A. This was about human dignity, and the D's are now laughing at the R's for another public relations debacle. They are literally the gang that couldn't shoot straight.
Interviews with black voters revealed yet another way the R's Hindenburged their own Presidential campaign. Most of you remember the voter identification laws that were passed in most states. Black voters saw this as an attempt to bring back the Jim Crow laws that kept them from voting, and it motivated them to hit the polls. I guess that didn't work they way they were hoping it would. One lawyer on the news was explaining, "We thought the voter ID laws were a thing of the past, something our parents and grandparents had to fight. Now we see it happening to us. We had to step up."
It's no secret by now (even the R's themselves are openly stating it) that Mittens' campaign underestimated the turnout to vote for Obama. They thought voter apathy would keep his supporters home and they would coast to victory (Mittens ignored states that traditionally skew white like Ohio to pitch in places like Pennsylvania. He wound up losing those white skewing states like Ohio). They didn't realize that their dismissiveness actually united voters against them. Once again, with a two party system, your options are to vote FOR a candidate or AGAINST the other. People registered their anger by throwing their support behind Obama. There's an old Polish proverb that says, "Friends come and go, enemies accumulate."
The result is the R's are now completely rudderless. They now see the traditional political machinations that they rehearsed and perfected all these decades are now completely worthless. Need proof? Look at the debt ceiling talks. Obama's proposal for the debt ceiling is copied significantly from a proposal Senator Mitch McConnell (R - Mars). It features a provision forcing the Treasury Department to hand over control of the debt ceiling to the President. D's at the time called this the "McConnell Provision". Of course, back then, the R's thought they were going to win the White House.
Now? McConnell is filibustering the proposal. In other words, a senator is filibustering the plan HE CAME UP WITH ORIGINALLY.
The biggest bright side to all this is the accursed Tea Partiers are dead as a political power. On the scale of public influence, they come in somewhere between la crosse fans and people who call in to the Art Bell show. Senator Jim DeMint of South Carolina is leaving his post. He wasn't voted out, he's resigning, gone next month. He was one of the people helping lead the Tea Partiers and getting them elected into office. Him leaving and heading for a job at the Heritage Foundation think tank means the writing is on the wall -- his following has made him a liability (others who embraced the Tea Partiers, like R Reps Allen West (FL), Joe Walsh (IL), and Chip Cravaack (MN) were voted out, and three more R Tea Partiers just got pulled from key committee assignments). He also blasted John Boehner, the Speaker Of The House, who had the thankless task of trying to keep the Kamikazees (the Tea Partiers elected to the House whose refusal to compromise nearly shut down the government several times last year) from giving the D's ALL the seats in the House. You don't get this kind of infighting when everyone is on the same page. The Tea Partiers have a bad reputation among the general public so, in the best tradition of John Stuart Mill, people are leaving them behind so as not to be judged by association with them. To quote Lou Reed, "Stick a fork in their ass and turn them over, they're done."
(It just occured to me that, in less than a paragraph, I referenced both John Stuart Mill and Lou Reed. Yup, you won't find THAT kind of diversity on any other blog!)
Now, the election for 2016 is up in the air. Obama is trying to get Bill Clinton to become ambassador to Ireland, which will keep Hilary from running in 2016. The R's, despite all their followers telling them they want the election to be about the issues, are in denial and want it to be about "white makes right" again.
Part of me is sad the world won't end in 2012. And part of me can't wait to see what 2016 brings.....