The World Turned Upside Down

posted at 8:48 am on January 20, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

You can be forgiven for thinking this looks more like Louisiana than Massachusetts:

Scott Brown upended politics in both the Bay State and on the national level in winning a Senate seat from Democrat Martha Coakley by a five-point margin.  Brown becomes the first Republican to win a Senate seat since 1972 — and that was a re-election by an incumbent.  This was a special election to fill the so-called “Kennedy seat,” and the result is a clear repudiation of the Kennedy legacy, at least on health care.

Rasmussen conducted the only thing resembling an exit poll after media outlets failed to anticipate a tight race.  The data shows that even though Coakley ran a poor campaign, when she bothered to run at all, that was at best a secondary reason for her political demise:

Fifty-six percent (56%) of voters in the state say health care was the most important factor in their voting decision. Brown made it clear in the closing days of the campaign that he intended to go to Washington to vote against the health care plan proposed by President Obama and congressional Democrats.

Twenty-five percent (25%) of Massachusetts voters say the economy was most important.

Forty-seven percent (47%) favor the health care legislation before Congress while 51% oppose it. However, the intensity was clearly with those who are opposed. Just 25% of voters in Massachusetts Strongly Favor the plan while 41% Strongly Oppose it.

Fifty percent (50%) say it would be better to pass no health care legislation at all rather than passing the bill before Congress.

Looking back, 30% say the bank bailouts were a good idea. Thirty-four percent (34%) say the same about the auto industry bailouts.

In other words, even in the bluest of blue states, where the entire Congressional delegation consisted of Democrats until 10 pm ET last night, voters have rejected the Obama agenda.  Fifty-six percent of Massachusetts voters say that health care was the most important factor in their voting decision, and Brown got at least 52% of the vote by campaigning on his explicit promise to block ObamaCare.

But this shouldn’t surprise anyone.  Two months ago, we saw the same exact dynamic in Virginia and especially New Jersey.  Democrats lost big in both states, but pundits were reluctant to draw conclusions from it.  Virginia, it was said, was always a center-right state that merely came home after a poor candidate (Creigh Deeds) ran for Governor.  In New Jersey, that argument didn’t fly as well, as the Garden State elects Republicans to statewide office only slightly more often than Massachusetts.  Barack Obama campaigned there as well, and delivered almost the same result as Coakley got in Massachusetts — a solid loss to a Republican who had not won a statewide office before Election Day.

Take another look at the map, and remember that Barack Obama won this state by twenty-six points just fourteen months ago.  He won New Jersey by double digits and Virginia by eight.  On the anniversary of his inauguration, which is today, the message is very clear: Obama has no coattails in the midterms.  Chris Cillizza reports that Democratic political gurus are making that clear to their clients:

Congressional strategists had warned in the closing days of the Massachusetts Senate race that a Coakley defeat had the potential to trigger a series of retirements within the Democratic ranks as members flee a political wave that could wash out dozens in the House and high single digits on the Senate side.

“My message to my clients? Jump ship now,” said one Democratic operative who advises a number of targeted Members of Congress. “Obama can’t help you.”

It’s not just that Obama can’t help Democrats — he’s killing their political prospects.  His own approval ratings are plunging, and his agenda is so toxic that Democrats can’t run on it in Massachusetts and win.  And if that agenda can no longer play in the bluest of blue states, where can Democrats feel safe by sticking to it?  Certainly not in Indiana, Arkansas, Pennsylvania, or even California.

Twelve months ago, few would have predicted that Obama could dissipate the goodwill and support of the American people before giving his first State of the Union address.  No one can ignore this lesson like they did with New Jersey and Virginia.  Democrats are in deep trouble — and an insistence on staying the course on a radical agenda that turned Massachusetts red and Brown will end the Democratic majority in the House just as it ended the Democratic sinecure of the “Kennedy seat.”


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Twelve months ago, few would have predicted that Obama could dissipate the goodwill and support of the American people before giving his first State of the Union address.

Speaking of the State of the Union address. . . hmmm, what’s that going to look like? If Obama makes a turn toward the center at this point, like Clinton did after Hillarycare got pwned in 93, he could still salvage his presidency. As Jon Stewart pointed out, you don’t have to have 60 votes on your side to get legislation through the Senate. You just have to include a few ideas that are important to the other side, and peel off a few votes in the process. Not exactly brain surgery, but Obama can’t seem to get behind that kind of math. It would require a greater knowledge of history, and ideological flexiblility, in short, greater maturity, than I think he possesses. More likely he’ll double down, as others have suggested above. If that’s the case, there may not be enough popcorn to get all the people who are learning to hate him through the SOTU address.

smellthecoffee on January 20, 2010 at 9:51 AM

Sarah Palin: Ride the Tide with Commonsense Candidates!

Juno77 on January 20, 2010 at 9:38 AM

I am hoping Governor Palin is only supporting Mcshamnesty because it isn’t time for him to announce his retirement and endorse Hayworth, YET.

Blacksmith8 on January 20, 2010 at 9:53 AM

THANKS FOR THE $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

OmahaConservative on January 20, 2010 at 9:55 AM

What is so delicious about all this is that if the Dems hadn’t changed the law in 2004, by which governors appointed replacement senators, so sure they were that Kerry was going to win for POTUS and need replacing by that fascist Mitt Romney, we wouldn’t even have been having a special election for the “Kennedy” seat. And now Barney Frank wants to eliminate the filibuster? Sheesh! What could go wrong with that? Whenever people ask me why I turned from being a flaming lib b/f 911 into a Genghis Kahn conservative, I always just tell them that I got tired of being wrong all the time. Nothing like having a flawed analysis of reality to produce disastrous outcomes.

smellthecoffee on January 20, 2010 at 10:00 AM

Big props to Gavin Newsome for not using the “teabag” term……… Let’s get rid of Senator /Mam next!!!!! Come on OmahoConservative… who do you like to take her seat??

kringeesmom on January 20, 2010 at 10:00 AM

I want to print that map and plaster it all over the workplace

scalleywag on January 20, 2010 at 10:01 AM

I wish I did not take a few minutes to really study this map because I just realized all of the towns basically have to break 60/40 to overcome the corruption of Boston, Brockton and Worcester. That’s frightening. Also, the rich people west of Boston are mentally ill.

TheBigOldDog on January 20, 2010 at 10:03 AM

I always just tell them that I got tired of being wrong all the time. Nothing like having a flawed analysis of reality to produce disastrous outcomes.

smellthecoffee on January 20, 2010 at 10:00 AM

That’s why I urge Obambi to push harder for his fascist agenda. Keep pushing it all the way to your own unemployment in 2012, you big-eared douche.

SKYFOX on January 20, 2010 at 10:06 AM

Bush got C’s, Obama probably failed lunch.” LOL

Muletrain on January 20, 2010 at 10:08 AM

My 20-20 hindsight says that if Martha Coakley had come out in the final days of the campaign and said “I have listened to the voters of Massachusettes, and I will cast the 41st vote against the current health care bill, as well”, and then promised to work on crafting a bi-partisan bill, she may well have won the election last night.

Her own voters would have been confident that she was lying, and she would have peeled off enough independents to carry the day.

Haiku Guy on January 20, 2010 at 10:08 AM

I wish I did not take a few minutes to really study this map because I just realized all of the towns basically have to break 60/40 to overcome the corruption of Boston, Brockton and Worcester. That’s frightening. Also, the rich people west of Boston are mentally ill.

TheBigOldDog on January 20, 2010 at 10:03 AM

Look at an electoral map of, say, Ohio. It has 88 counties, many with small populations. Geographically, you have a see of red trying to offset Cleveland, Toledo, Akron, Columbus, and, to a lesser extent, Cincinnati. If I recall correctly, in 2004, Bush took 84 counties, but lost in counties encompassing those first four metro areas. Thank God for middle Americans.

BuckeyeSam on January 20, 2010 at 10:09 AM

ny is next baby

blatantblue on January 20, 2010 at 9:33 AM

I’m with ya! Though after spending 12 years in PA I really want that Dem machine to go down in Nov!

huskerdiva on January 20, 2010 at 10:12 AM

Scott Brown has a little over just two quick years to convince the people that elected him to re-elect him.

There are many more to come that will face the music this year, and in 2012. Pelosi, Reid, Murtha, Frank, Franken, Boxer, Feinstein, Obama, etc ad nauseum.

This is a fantastic turning point in the fight to end the reign of fiscal terror and exceedingly poor judgment that the liberal Democrat base has wrought on each and every one of us. They have sorely underestimated and outright ignored The People at their own peril. Right now, it looks as though they may reap what they have sown.

Yet, despite their public proclamations and seemingly sincere promises of transparency and supreme ethical behavior, they still sneak and gather in private chambers out of the public eye to plan and contrive behind closed doors their despicable fight to shove their personal agenda’s down our throats in spite of the obvious signs that their personal agenda’s are not the same as the People’s Agenda. The great push of the liberal Democrat base since Barack Hussein Obama’s election to turn America inside out and upside down at this, their first and finest opportunity, is not yet crushed. The fight is far from over, and there are still many more to come.

They must ALL be held accountable for their actions, as well as their lack thereof.

SilverStar830 on January 20, 2010 at 10:14 AM

Looks like Obama has inherited Clinton’s political kiss of death.

Here’s to hoping he campaigns for Reid an Pelosi!

loudmouth883 on January 20, 2010 at 10:16 AM

The democrats are the dumbest smart people I know.

saiga on January 20, 2010 at 10:17 AM

The working class people of Waltham went 50/49 for Brown. Surrounded by all the wealth they chose the Country’s long term interests than their own short terms gains. God Bless America!

TheBigOldDog on January 20, 2010 at 10:18 AM

Wolf Blitzer, trying to drum up hope Coakley might still win, said most of the votes had come in from the “very Republican western part of the state”.

LibTired on January 20, 2010 at 10:23 AM

I agree with Ted C’s opening kickoff analogy, but would add it’s the first game of the season.
If anyone thinks that these radicals are gonna just give up now, when they see themselves so close, you haven’t been paying attention to the last few decades.
While it would be suicidal strategy for them to double down now, don’t be surprised, as their perception of reality and (lack of) sense of right and wrong is
that distorted. This is the reason that we can’t let them have the absolute power over us that they seek with HC reform and Crap and Tax. That is a true dead end for our Republic, and a symptom of their mental disorder.
Celebrate and back to vigilance, as even now they are redirecting Soros’ resources.

ontherocks on January 20, 2010 at 10:23 AM

I consider today one of the happiest days of my life and I don’t live in MA.

elclynn on January 20, 2010 at 10:23 AM

BuckeyeSam on January 20, 2010 at 9:39 AM

There are several Republicans presumably with their hats in the ring in Arkansas, but this guy probably stands the best chance of beating her. He has name recognition in the state and a pretty solid record. He lost to her the last time he ran against her by about 10 points, but given the way she is polling against the other no names in the race, he ought to be able to crush her. Also, he will probably get Huck’s endorsement which probably won’t hurt here, at least among Republicans. Social cons will love him.

NoLeftTurn on January 20, 2010 at 10:29 AM

^^ her = Lincoln, of course. Duh!

NoLeftTurn on January 20, 2010 at 10:30 AM

“Obama can’t help you.”

’nuff said

heh

cmsinaz on January 20, 2010 at 10:38 AM

that’s a nice looking map there….

:-)

cmsinaz on January 20, 2010 at 10:47 AM

I consider today one of the happiest days of my life and I don’t live in MA.

elclynn on January 20, 2010 at 10:23 AM

Me too!

Guess I can stop saving up to bribe my Death Panel now!

PattyJ on January 20, 2010 at 10:54 AM

I’ve got a postcard.

BKeyser on January 20, 2010 at 10:54 AM

For the first time in a LONG time, I feel good!

I didn’t eat dinner last night until Scott Brown was announced the winner. My husband ate something from the fridge and we fed the girls, of course. But Mama was not in the mood for food until the votes were counted.

But once the girls went to sleep, I finally took a couple of things out of the garage freezer: Mushrooms and Chicken with Tarragon Leaves and Garlic and Wine Sauce, and Rissotto with Asparragus and Mushrooms in Garlic Sauce. Heated them both at five minutes each. Filled a 20-once water bottle and added Crystal Light. Sat in front of the computer and ate, while watching Chris Matthews, Rachel Maddow and Olbermann blow themselves into smithereens. Boy, even Media Matters Against America were on meltdown mode! They still want to attack Rush Limbaugh for saying “This One’s For You, Mary Jo!” Don’t they understand that MA just rejected the power of a DYNASTY? And not just that, but they also rejected an UNJUST PROSECUTOR so publicly and so definitely as a representative of their state?

After eating, I stayed up to watch more meltdowns. Then, I went to bed. It was a great end to a great evening!

(BTW Ed: I think y’all need a bigger server! ;-) )

newton on January 20, 2010 at 11:14 AM

This election is THE state of the Union address. The people have spoken. Ignore what Obama says with slogans and blaming next week. This is how thing really are. When Democrats by the thousands kick the Chicago way to the curb, Obama should use those ears for listening.

seven on January 20, 2010 at 11:26 AM

Midway is the best analogy — “Scratch one Donk flattop”.

docob on January 20, 2010 at 11:49 AM

!!!GLOBAL COOLING CONFIRMED!!!

Ted Kennedy reports a cold day in hell due to Scott Brown victory…

E L Frederick (Sniper One) on January 20, 2010 at 12:38 PM

Mitt Romney Continues His Golden Streak: http://mittromneycentral.com/2010/01/20/mitt-romney-continues-his-golden-streak/

dnlchisholm on January 20, 2010 at 12:43 PM

docob on January 20, 2010 at 11:49 AM

The Battle of Coral Sea, actually. Agree with the sentiment.

NaCly dog on January 20, 2010 at 12:49 PM

“The White House says the president is unaware of the tea parties and will hold his own event today,” ABC’s Dan Harris said on “Good Morning America” on April 15, 2009.

“So, you know, when you see – those of you who are watching certain news channels on which I’m not very popular and you see folks waving tea bags around, let me just remind them that I am happy to have a serious conversation about how we are going to cut our health care costs down over the long term …” ~ President Barack Obama responding to the “Tea Party” Movement on his 100th day in office. (April 29, 2009)

Brown Scores Upset Victory Over Coakley in Massachusetts Senate Race ~ FOXNews.com (January 19, 2010)

Hey, Obama, welcome to the party, *pal* ! ! ! !

ReagansRight on January 20, 2010 at 12:57 PM

Personally I doubt Rasmussen conducted the only exit poll. This time, it was for private consumption only, anticipating the results

I am pleased Brown followed my advice ran his campaign specifically to gain trust, by distancing himself from both parties, and by focusing on stopping healthcare as it now stands, since healthcare was already a bird in hand for his state, and the pols were scaring people with their talk of changing the care, and selectively taxing groups who did not make deals with the Party. Politely speaking, the Mass voters had to screw themselves to vote Coakley

Brown avoided the pols, used a truck and bullhorn. Treated everyone as if they had value. Focused on the public and not on the party or on himself (except in self deprecating terms). He consistantly made comments to let the crowds know he understood their grievances, while Croaker consistently let the crowds know she obeyed the party, and was one with the Party

I was very impressed with Brown’s speech which was the clearest cleanest contact with the public I can remember, and he spent his time pulling the crowd into the center of power. He has a great clear voice and is in control of his paragraphs

I was laughing at the MSM critique of the speech. One channel showed him giving the speech but blocked out the words as they mocked him. They said he couldn’t even handle a teleprompter (!) and thought he was an amateur for the joke about his daughters being available.

If those fools meant what they said they were double fools. I did not realize Brown was a lawyer, but the daughter joke is an old lawyer trick to win a jury. Eyeball the jury, digress into personal tales that pull the heartstring until the jurty vibrates and opens itself to your arguments. It is important not to be slick, but to make the jury empathize, sympathize and realize you are one of them.

You can wear a deerskin jacket with fringe and play cowboy, whatever, but it is effective. It is most effective if you really mean it, because people hunger for honesty

Unless Brown is a secret crook, he has a great future. I look forward to hear a non drooler interviewed by the MSM

If he does not stab us in the back on Healthcare, I may even love him

I love him even more for not using the disgusting cliches uncluding the fake common citizen, “remember Joe Blow from Saaquatch who is blind in one eye and unable to get a ventilator”, or Sally Wook from Wookley who wrote me this letter …..”

If he ends up a Presidential contender, I beg him in advance, please please do not let the shysters spend one Party dime making those awful soft focus running through the meadow videos about his life, his family, his heartaches, his love and his need for all of us to follow him and the party. If they make one, please do not allow it to be played on a 50 foot screen at the convention. Sorry, got carried away

Congratulations, Brown. Well done

entagor on January 20, 2010 at 1:20 PM

Bush got C’s, Obama probably failed lunch.” LOL

Muletrain on January 20, 2010 at 10:08 AM

Thanks for the laff!!

lovingmyUSA on January 20, 2010 at 1:30 PM

that’s a nice looking map there….

:-)

cmsinaz on January 20, 2010 at 10:47 AM

..be a shame if something happened to it.

BacaDog on January 20, 2010 at 1:37 PM

dnlchisholm on January 20, 2010 at 12:43 PM

Thanks for the link–food for thought…someone should be paying attention to the magic formula…

lovingmyUSA on January 20, 2010 at 1:49 PM

Maybe a little OT, but according to AP results, Brown won by 109,425 votes out of 2,249,026 cast, or 4.87%.

Before the election, one of the HotAir commenters kept predicting Brown by 4.5–he really nailed it!

Steve Z on January 20, 2010 at 2:03 PM

Now can Hannity shut up a little? I just had to turn him off. I have a headache from his nonstop mouth. Yes I’m lad the pendalum is swinging back some but damn he’s so friggin obnoxious.

johnnyU on January 20, 2010 at 3:19 PM

Maybe a little OT, but according to AP results, Brown won by 109,425 votes out of 2,249,026 cast, or 4.87%.

Before the election, one of the HotAir commenters kept predicting Brown by 4.5–he really nailed it!

Steve Z on January 20, 2010 at 2:03 PM

I HAD A DREAM several days before the election about last night. That it was gonna be as big as SuperBowl with all the crowds all excited, jumping up and down, and tons of ‘em on the streets! I also dreamed that the victory was 75% to 25% (The Boss retweeted it when I Twittered it), so it was a sort of 3 to 1.

Now I dunno if that was accurate or not, nor the 75-25% because I am not a number-type person. How many votes went for the independent candidate? I have only seen Brown-Coakley. When I finally got thru after the site crashed, I said “yes my dream did come true”, but that the percentage was more like 2 to 1.

????

ProudPalinFan on January 20, 2010 at 3:25 PM

The Battle of Coral Sea, actually. Agree with the sentiment.

NaCly dog on January 20, 2010 at 12:49 PM

Thanks for the info! Need to brush up.

docob on January 20, 2010 at 4:56 PM

ProudPalinFan on January 20, 2010 at 3:25 PM

It was more like 21 to 19.

Al in St. Lou on January 20, 2010 at 6:17 PM

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