By Fidel "Butch" Montoya
So the shocker election in Massachusetts is over and done, but now the ramifications of losing a 30 point lead to lose the election, Martha Coakley and the Democrats have a lot to think about. President Obama’s last second visit to prop up Caokley’s campaign, only adds to the insult and sting felt by shock shelled Democrats.
Headlines on newspapers and on the Internet tell the story. MSNBC’s headline perhaps best sums the night in Massachusetts, “Dems reeling, soul-searching after Mass loss.” No doubt, this includes a whole lot of soul-searching going on at the White House.
Republican Scott Brown now has the coveted Senate seat held by the late Senator Edward Kennedy. To think that a deep blue state could end up with a Republican senator is simply shocking, particularly when the Democrats held this seat for over a half century. Democrats outnumber Republicans 3 – 1, but it is conceivable that Democrats broke ranks and voted for Brown. Some polls had 65% to 72% of the Independents swinging toward Brown.
If President Obama planned to celebrate his first year in office, this election brought it down to reality and it must have felt more like a stinging rebuke from the Change and Hope crowd. What a difference a year makes. A year ago, it was Obama that stood for change and hope. A year later, Democrats and Independents feeling betrayed by the promises that the President did not live up to, end up losing the confidence and votes of the Massachusetts voter.
Anger, frustration, and fear best describe the voter attitudes in Massachusetts, and maybe may represent the feelings of many voters across the country as well, and something to worry about with the mid-term elections coming in November.
The perception President Obama took care of Wall Street while ignoring Main Street is going to be a tough issue for the President to defuse. Billions of dollars, yes billions of dollars were used to bail out the Wall Street financial district, only to have bankers turn around and continue to do business as usual. Voters are sick of bankers who don’t get it, as those in the financial sector continue their corruption and greed that nearly drove our economy over the cliff.
The billions of the stimulus bill that were supposed to create jobs and create financial stability seem to have never have made it into the wallets of jobless. Unemployment is over 10%, but in many cities, the unemployment rate is as high as 15%, perhaps even higher. Blacks and Latinos are suffering the most as unemployment begins to eat away at savings and hope for the future. In order to put an end to this Great Recession, the President needs to create jobs, more jobs! Unless people don’t get back to work, confidence in the President will continue to drop.
The Democrats are in trouble and the sad part about it, they don’t get it. While people want health care reform, they don’t want it done in the back rooms of politicians who play up to the old stereotypes of deal making in the smoke filled conference rooms of the Capitol. This notion of individual Senators making “deals for their state” has lead directly to this issue of back room politics and greed.
The Democrats have tried to push the health care reform package through Congress without reasonable debate and transparency. According to the latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll, 48% of voters believe the health care bill is a step backward and only 42% feels the bill would be an improvement. And remember that word, transparency? Transparency was to be the hallmark of the Obama Presidency. Instead, the President continues to operate in the back rooms of the White House with little or no transparency.
The two wars which Americans want out of, and the wars that candidate Obama said he would pull out of, are not going to happen anytime soon. In fact the war policies of President Obama only promise more involvement and a larger military buildup and yes, more young American men and women who are fighting wars that Iraqi and Afghani men and women should be fighting.
While much attention has been given to health care reform, not enough attention has been given to the economy. According to the latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll, 83% are dissatisfied with the economy. Just 16% are happy with the way the economy is going. That is a red flag waving furiously in the wind, and it seems no one at the White House is paying attention.
Americans, who have jobs, are holding on to their money because of uncertainty and fear of an unknown future. Americans without jobs are fast losing hope for any kind of recovery, a recovery with good paying jobs that may save their homes and families.
It’s the economy, stupid. That is the message the Democrats need to hear…loud and clear if they intend to put out the range fire of discontent, anger, and dissatisfaction with the policies and politics of President Obama and his Reid/Pelosi led Democrats.
For some reason President Obama does not feel the pain that many Americans are suffering. It is as if he has forgotten what happens when people can’t put food on the table, can’t fix the old car anymore, and when little by little, the mortgage gets bigger and bigger. The calls from creditors go ignored, and many are waiting for that dreaded knock on the door with the court order to vacate their home. The President and the Democrats have lost their way and can’t feel the pain.
People are fed up with politics as usual and all the deal making that accompanies any significant legislation. The Democrats like to talk about their veto proof 60 votes in the Senate, but in reality they were never really able to corral the Blue Dog Democrats into voting like Democrats. It was all smoke and mirrors politics, but now, reality sets in as they realize they only have 59 votes in the Senate and what does that really mean anyway?
Democrats had better listen to the discontent and learn the lessons of what went wrong in Massachusetts, and turn the Democratic fighting machine to fight the right battles and face up to the rebellion in the ranks that goes beyond the Tea Party set. The anger and frustration felt in Massachusetts is real and is spreading across the country like a range fire out of control.
The question I keep coming back to is how can a candidate squander a 30 point lead in the polls and end up losing the election is really beyond my comprehension. Somehow the Democratic message to the faithful in Massachusetts must have gotten lost or garbled in the translation.
It is time for the President to stop governing from the Left and find a more suitable and reasonable position in the Middle. The liberal policies of the Left have created a bigger deficit, and are leading us to bankruptcy. We need to stop the wild government spending.
According to the latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll, only 38% of Americans believe he shares their position on the issues. Overall, the poll gives the President a lot of evidence of why people are fed up with his year old leftist presidency.
The President and Democrats ought to remember the lessons learned in Massachusetts or who knows; more Scott Browns from across the country may end up getting elected in November and dragging the Obama Presidency to the middle or out the door.
Fidel "Butch" Montoya is Director of H.S. Power and Light Ministries. He was the Vice President/News Director of KUSA Channel 9 News from 1985-1990, and worked at the news station for 24 years. Montoya also served as Deputy Mayor of City and County of Denver from 1995-1999; as the Manager of Public Safety for the City and County of Denver from 1994-2000. Montoya was Licensed to preach in 1972.