They could not cognitively handle that they had supported an administration that spent like left-liberals, poured trillions into nation-building in failed states, fought a war on dramatically false pretenses, authorized illegal torture by presidential decree, lost a major US city, and turned a surplus into a spiraling deficit, leaving no wriggle room for when a storm like the financial collapse of 2008 occurred. So they simply went into denial, and blamed everything on the person who inherited this catastrophe.Andrew has more.
Reduced to a purer rump based in the South, they reinforced their worst tendencies, as parties often do after losing elections in landslides. They became more anti-illegal immigrant, they chanted slogans about "liberty or tyranny" rather than offering proposals to solve our many problems, they became older and whiter and angrier. And because of the enduring recession and a centrist attempt to find a way for working poor to afford health insurance, they blamed all their woes on a black communist, taking from whites and giving to minorities. And from this strong elixir, they gained an appearance of strength. They may well do well this fall as a protest vote.
But what then? They do not have the courage or conviction of the British Tories, who are actually cutting spending with a vengeance, while tackling climate change and promoting values like commitment and responsibility for all citizens, gay and straight. And so they will be asked by Obama, if they win back the House, to take a stand on the debt, along the lines of his debt commission. What then? Will they grow up and deal or retreat in Palinite denialism?
I suspect the latter ... which could well lead to a landslide for Obama in 2012.
It remains to be seen if the GOP will win back the House, and it is not as certain as you read in the papers. The fate of the House Democrats is in Obama's hands. IF Obama hits the road and campaigns hard to sell his agenda and accomplishments and hits the GOP hard for obstructionism, the House will be held. If not,....congratulations Speaker Boehner.
But even if Republicans retake the House, what do they then have to offer the American people? One need look no further than last Sunday's MTP in which DSCC Chair John Cornyn (R-TX) and NRCC Chair Pete Sessions (R-TX) 3 months from the election were completely incapable of offering any vision of GOP leadership.
Clinton lost the House in his first Mid-term and his re-election could not have gone better.