Posted on January 19, 2010
Scott Brown’s insurgent campaign has shocked political insiders, the media elite, and the Obama White House. But in a bigger context, it really shouldn’t have shocked anybody. This is just a further example of the political see-saw coming back in alignment.
Remember that tune from sixties, “Spinning Wheels”? “What goes up must come down, spinning wheels go round and round.”
We live in a center right country, politically. It starts with the center, so when the voters perceived that the Bush Administration and Congressional Republicans went off too far to the right, they voted in the Democrats in 2006 and 2008.
The Democrats, being Democrats, took their election victories as an endorsement of their left-wing, liberal agenda. Of course, they were wrong on score, and the political see-saw starting moving in the other direction.
Today’s vote in Massachusetts is further evidence of that trend. It started in New York 23, where conservatives rejected the accommodationist agenda of a liberal Republican candidate. While Republicans lost that seat, it energized the right in ways that propelled the governors’ races in New Jersey and Virginia.
Scott Brown is hitting the wave at just the right moment. He has run an outsider campaign, and he has united Republicans, independent voters and Reagan Democrats. He has inspired the Postal worker from Cheers, the former star quarterback from Boston College and the hero of the Red Sox recent World Series teams.
Martha Coakley has run an incumbent, insider campaign. She promises to vote just like Ted Kennedy, to support the President’s big government agenda, and to be the 60th vote for a health care bill that most of her constituents don’t really want, according to polls.
Is the vote today a vote against President Obama? Partially. But it is mostly a vote to restore balance to a political system that needs balance. The see-saw is now trending in the GOP’s direction, and that should carry through until next November.