Relief and defeat…

Now that the dust has settled and everyone has lost their US election fever, here are a few quotes and observations which I found interesting.

One of the main patterns which I was noticing during the build up to election day was the intense scrutiny and analysis of the electorate itself, rather than the candidates. A lot of time was given to which sections of society would be voting for which candidate and why. Who would get the Latino vote (female Latino, male Latino, young or old etc), who would get the ‘young’ vote, who would get the African-American vote?

All the different demographics seemed to pull towards the Democrats, with the Republicans relying more and more on the older and white male vote.

Here’s one viewpoint…

Republican defeat has conservative factions fighting for party control

7 November 2012 9:10PM

I live in Canada, and you’re not listening, as shown by your ludicrous hyberbole.

The majority of the electorate took one look at the bile spewing from Republican mouthpieces and collectively shook their head. Unemployment was running at around 8% and Obama won every major swing state. If the economy was in good shape it would have been a republican bloodbath.

Ranting about Communism and how you spent 23 years willing to die blah, blah, blah just underlines how utterly out of touch you are; There are an entire generation of voters who grew up with no fear of socialism, no cold war, no Reaganite vision of America. Even leaving aside young people the Republicans lost everybody else; Latin-Americans, African-Americans, Asian-Americans, and Women. All that’s left are older, whiter, more predominantly male voters like yourself.

You say you won’t change but I’m saying it doesn’t matter one jot; your views are the new minority, and to get them elected the Republican party will have to moderate to build a consensus with those it has previously spurned. The Dream Act will pass with Republican support, not because they like it but because around half of all babies born in America are hispanic. Gay marriage will pass, not because they like it but because it’s a big issue for young people and there is a risk that an entire generation are going to spend there first 4-5 elections solidly voting Democrat, and come to view the GOP as a party of bigotry and hate.

The Republican party is old and white, and in the coming years those will be in shorter and shorter supply. The GOP has to mirror the country not the other way around. You won’t change but your country has.

There are some recurring themes raised there, including the diminishing section of US society who will be voting Republican, the increasing numbers of ‘minority’ groups, the unwillingness of the Republican Party to change and really importantly the issue of the ‘bile’ from the party – the issue of negative and aggressive advertising, the hate filled speeches and the quite obvious fear on display.

Maybe most importantly, there is the issue of Obama winning the election (and most of the ‘swing states’) even though the country is still in recession and still recovering from one of it’s worst economic periods in its history. With little economic good news to go on, he still got back in.

The final observation I want to share is the popular vote. No matter what anyone says or what figures are put forward, Mitt Romney (indirectly) managed to gain nearly half of all votes. Barack Obama won about 50.6 percent of the votes, or just under 61 million. Mitt Romney won about 47.8 percent of the vote, just under 58 million, but Obama’s margin could grow to more than 3 percent once all the votes are in.

So, four years to change the world. I’m far more relieved this time, compared to the joy and excitement of Obama’s first election. I hope Obama can make a significant and positive difference in that time and continue to promote socialist principles.

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