Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Obama & Biden Win Reelection!

President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama
Vice President Joe Biden and Second Lady Dr. Jill Biden
(Sept. 7, 2012, Portsmouth, NH (AP Photo/Jim Cole))
They did it, we did it! President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden won yesterday's national contest over Republicans Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, by a margin of 303 electoral votes to 203 for the Romney-Ryan ticket! Our 44th President and his Vice President will have 4 more years to continue the work they began in 2008, with a more liberal US Senate, including new progressive Democratic senators like Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and the first out lesbian senator in US history, Tammy Baldwin, of Wisconsin. Despite the Romney's campaign's head games, which beguiled the establishment media, the Obama campaign did enough to energize its DEMOCRATIC coalition, and won the majority of the swing states, including Ohio, Virginia, Florida, Colorado, New Hampshire, Nevada, and VP nominee Paul Ryan's home state of Wisconsin, sealing the victory for the Democratic ticket. Despite the ongoing economic crises, enough voters felt things were turning around to give the President a second chance. Despite billions from secret Super PAC funders, many of them billionaires and multimillionaires, the outright plutocratic Republican ticket lost.

I sincerely hope President Obama will take a few more tips from his predecessor and campaign energizer, former president Bill Clinton, who despite all the gloomy predictions, especially from the right and mainstream media, modestly raised taxes in 1993 on everyone, including the rich, and went on to preside over the most successful economic expansion of any president in the last 50 years. I hope he--and voters, since the media are paid to be obtuse--realize too that as Bill Clinton, who repeatedly accommodated the GOP learned the hard way, there is only so far you can go. They will still try to destroy you, so negotiate from strength, not weakness. Ignore the Washington consensus, and push for what you believe in. Obama will have an increased Democratic majority in the Senate, led by the wily Harry Reid (D-NV), so if a jobs bill requires reconciliation, push it through. If smart-grid funding requires reconciliation, push it through. With bills that might merit bipartisanship, like immigration reform, extend an olive branch to the GOP. Otherwise, do no let them roll you, and keep pushing forward, especially on green technologies, a saner foreign policy, a progressive judiciary, and fiscal plans that shrink the income gap and increase job opportunities for the 99%.

But that all will be work to undertake after being sworn in a second time. With the victories for marriage equality in Maryland and Maine, the positive ballot measure victories in New Jersey and elsewhere, and the defeat of hatemongers like Republicans Joe Walsh of Illinois and Allen West of Florida, the country outside the deep South does appear to have rejected the politics of negation, dissimulation and aristocracy, and is showing it is willing to move forward. It's up to all of us now to maintain that movement, and keep pushing, as hard as it will often seem. Even the Clinton-era rates, set to return in January 2014, won't pry the cold fingers off the millions of those willing to spend everything to rewrite laws to benefit themselves and their elite class.

Congratulations to President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden. You did it, we did it. Now we need to really do it, and keep the country moving the best direction!

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