F5: the 2014 GOP’s Red Hurricane.
(ThyBlackMan.com) Congratulations, Republicans. I mean that in a completely sincere and genuine place. You came, you saw, you dominated on this past Tuesday. To call the results of this Election Day a clean sweep doesn’t begin to describe what actually happened. Succinctly put, the Democratic Party got decimated locally, statewide, and nationally. The Republican Party not only won every single political race of consequence throughout the nation, it won every single political race that mattered going away. As a proud and vocal Democrat, I am compelled to share with you that there is no conceivable way to spin this. There is no way to pretend what just occurred at the polls didn’t just occur. There is no way to minimize the history which just occurred before all of our eyes. If the so-called wave of 2010 was a red tornado, then the 2014 wave can best be described as a red hurricane. A virtual F5.
As our British friends say, this past Tuesday was “a proper thrashing” for the Democrats. You know what? Maybe we had it coming. Perhaps we deserved to be blown away.
I typically don’t feel comfortable predicting or prognosticating outcomes of any kind – be they in politics, sports, or otherwise. That’s a personal preference of mine. And it’s a good thing, too. It’s all-too easy to form an expectation in your head which conflicts with what your heart tells you. Or what your gut tells you. I knew weeks ago that things weren’t going to end well for the Democratic Party this election cycle. I had knowledge of statistics, trends, and personal accounts of those in the field which presaged Tuesday’s outcome. I knew it would be bad, but I didn’t know how bad. No one did.
So here we are. For all intents and purposes, this season is over for the Atlanta Falcons, the Georgia Bulldogs, and for the Democratic Party.
What happened? Can anything be learned from such an epic beating?
As for what happened, it was a failure by the Democrats on multiple levels. The Republicans out-thought us, out-hustled us, out-raised us in campaign funds, and turned out to vote for their candidates in significant numbers. They dictated the terms of engagement for the political campaigns. They forced Democratic candidates into purity tests totally foreign to our party. When challenged, Democratic candidates – hello Michelle Nunn (GA) and Allison Lundergan Grimes (KY) – denied President Obama once, twice, thrice. Even the Apostle Peter would have shaken his head at this. When you run from the President – especially if he is among the most prominent members of your own political party – then what are you running towards? Ms. Nunn and Ms. Grimes were either unable or unwilling to admit if they voted for Mr. Obama in 2012. They were either unable or unwilling to admit if they supported the Affordable Care Act/Obamacare.
These things helped to seal their fate. Democratic candidates nationwide refused the President’s offers to fundraise and appear on their behalf. Again, these proved to be fatal errors for those who attempted to distance themselves from him. These candidates didn’t even run on the Democratic Party’s platforms. They ran on their own one-issue or two-issue platforms, and this strategy fell flat everywhere it was tried.
As for what can be learned, it was the same thing we knew before the election: every vote matters. The Republicans showed up. The Democrats didn’t show up. I guess they were too busy to be bothered. I suppose they decided to wait for 2016. Meanwhile, the GOP just changed the game. They kept control of the House. They took control of the Senate. They won or retained Governorships all over the US. I’ll tell you what they won’t. Tuesday was such a red banner day for Republicans (pun fully intended), they don’t even to win the White House in 2016 because they’ve already won everything else.
I really want to believe. I’d love to know in my heart, my mind, and my spirit that the Republican Party will listen to the American people. I’d adore the conviction that Republicans will live up to the trust just invested in them. I would truly welcome the sight of the Grand Ole Party vigorously pursuing the agenda of all Americans rather than just its own narrow agenda. My gut, however, tells me otherwise. My intuition informs me that we can all expect more of the same: more gridlock, more refusal to govern or compromise, and more divisive speech.
Democrats, learn from 2014. Get better. Do better. And if you didn’t vote last Tuesday, you cannot complain later.
Thanks to the red hurricane, you’re now on the clock, Republicans. It’s your time to shine. It’s your turn to lead this country forward. The American people giveth and they taketh away. Just ask the Democrats.
Staff Writer; Arthur L. Jones, III
This talented brother is a local Minister, weekly featured Democratic Op-Ed columnist, non-profit advisor, and sees the Braves winning it all this fall. Rev. Jones welcomes your comments! Please email him directly at: firstname.lastname@example.org.