The Left got clobbered from coast to coast on Tuesday night. It’s tough to find anything they could spin as a victory.
There will be excuses and evasions — we’ll be told not to read too much into the results because 2016 will have a very different electoral turnout. Fair enough, but the left failed everywhere Nov. 3.
The Left failed in its San Francisco crusade to seize control of people’s property by crushing the Airbnb online rental service. They lost in San Francisco.
“Tonight, in a decisive victory for the middle class, voters stood up for working families’ right to share their homes and opposed an extreme, hotel industry-backed measure,” Airbnb spokesman Christopher Nutty declared.
He’s right about the forces behind the movement, but there’s nothing new about big-money interests cynically using leftist anti-business rhetoric for their own anti-competitive purposes. Proposition F was pitched as a populist-liberal measure to protect The People’s property interests — as if a fairly recent business could be blamed for insane property values and land restrictions in San Francisco! — and it lost, 45 to 55 percent.
The voters also defeated “sanctuary city” champion Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi, who was flung out of office on a 61 percent to 31 percent vote for challenger Vicki Hennessy.
The biggest political story of the night was Tea Party favorite Matt Bevin crushing Democrat Attorney General Jack Conway by nine points to become Kentucky’s second Republican governor in a generation. That’s a big win for the supposedly dead Tea Party — especially because polls showed Conway ahead by four or five points.
A tidal wave of Republicans swept into office with Bevin. One of them was his running mate, Jenean Hampton, who the New York Times writes will “make history as Kentucky’s first African-American to hold statewide office.” The chairwoman of the Bowling Green Southern Kentucky Tea Party just grabbed that spot in history. Please, media, tell us more about how Republicans are in chaos and the Tea Party is dead.
Bevin’s victory was a big loss for Big Labor. Bevin promised right-to-work laws would be among his top priorities as governor. Union bosses fought hard against Bevin, mounting a huge get-out-the-vote effort… and came up short.
Bevin ran the same sort of anti-establishment conservative populist campaign that isn’t supposed to work for presidential candidates like Donald Trump, Ben Carson, and Ted Cruz. He spent his final campaign hours pressing the flesh at Chick-fil-A restaurants. Democrat heads exploded when news of his victory rolled in… fairly literally, in the case of Kentucky House Speaker and newly-minted viral video star Greg Stumbo:
In Virginia, where the GOP legislature has been able to hold Democrat Governor Terry McAuliffe in check, Republicans beat back a Democrat attempt to recapture the Senate. The Democrats only needed to pick up one seat, but they couldn’t do it, despite squandering a fortune on the race.
“Today, Virginians voted for a fiscally responsible and conservative majority,” boasted Senate Majority Leader Thomas K. Norment, as reported by the Washington Post. “Our victory is all the more impressive in that it was achieved despite the record-breaking millions of dollars spent by Governor McAuliffe, his allies and out-of-state PACs. This election was decided by Virginians.”
Among the biggest losers in Virginia was gun-control zealot Michael Bloomberg, who threw a couple of million bucks into two of the Senate races. McAuliffe has been pushing hard for new gun laws. Hillary Clinton’s anti-gun strategy is a sure-fire winner for 2016!
Legalized marijuana went up in smoke in Ohio, by a huge two-to-one margin.
Pot legalization can also be framed as a libertarian issue, but it’s harder for the Left to handle the defeat of its mad drive to confuse America into submission by re-defining gender. In Texas — specifically in Houston, which voted for Obama, and has a lesbian mayor — voters defeated a proposal that would have let men who “identify” as women parade into women’s restrooms was flushed by voters, 61 percent to 39 percent. The gender-blending law was pushed hard as vital to the human rights of gay and transgendered persons, while those who disagreed were excoriated as “bigots.” Such pressure tactics are not supposed to fail in 2015, even though “transgenders” comprise perhaps 1-in-3,000 Americans.
“I just hope that cities across the nation are watching,” said Pastor Steve Riggle of Houston’s Grace Community Church, as quoted by the Washington Post. “And that leaders … will step up and stand up and stand against this [gender-blending] thing that’s encroaching across the nation with intimidation and fear and telling people who just believe in common moral decency that they have no voice.”
In addition to the caveat about presidential elections turning out different electorates, it should be remembered that the Left doesn’t take “no” for an answer, ever.
Every initiative that was defeated in 2015 will return, over and over again, until the “progressives” eke out a win – or persuade a friendly judge to hand them one – at which point they will declare history over, and insist the issue is settled and beyond the reach of mere voters in a democracy.
There is something to be said for the Left’s understanding that slowly shifting the window of possibility, and winning legislative and judicial coups that can’t be easily reversed, is worth getting creamed in a few elections.
That’s winning-with-losing strategy true of gun control, and it might be true of ObamaCare, too. The failure of that massive boondoggle has grown too obvious for anyone to spin away, with enrollment less than half of what was predicted, and over half of the insurance co-operatives pushing up daisies. President Obama’s term has been an utter disaster for his party at every level below the presidency…
Under President Obama, Democrats have lost 900+ state legislature seats, 12 governors, 69 House seats, 13 Senate seats. That’s some legacy.
— Rory Cooper (@rorycooper) November 4, 2015
… but if the Constitution is permanently deformed, and the contract between citizens and the increasingly powerful State is forever rewritten, that might be seen as a price worth paying.
Why worry about losing elections that don’t really matter any more?