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Saturday, Aug. 27, 2016

Voters have sent a message to GOP

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Every political writer in the nation has, by now, rehashed the results from Tuesday's national elections and the sweeping victory by the Democratic party. I don't pretend to be in the league of most political pundits but I have a few small town observations.

President Bush had it right when he said: "We got a thumpin'." For Republicans or better yet conservatives, Tuesday was not a day for celebration. Blame it on the war in Iraq or the ethical blunders in Washington, the outcome was astonishing. Had I been a betting man, I would have clearly lost my shirt on Tuesday.

But I don't share the doom and gloom that some writers and talking heads predict. I think we'll see limited action in Washington over the next two years though I doubt I will agree with any of that action.

The tax cuts that have clearly stimulated the economy are in dire jeopardy. It's highly doubtful they will be extended. But don't think the impact of the tax cuts will effect only the wealthy. Just pay attention in the coming years and watch your tax burden increase. That is a virtual certainty.

And those new taxes will go to shore up a welfare system that is clearly broken. The Democrats will try to balance the gap between the haves and the have nots but it will be the middle ground that pays most of that price.

Having said all of that, a change in Washington will, in the long run, be a positive move for this country. Those of us who have waited a lifetime to get a conservative House, Senate and White House are generally disappointed that the reforms we had hoped for never materialized. I had dreamed of welfare reform, of a real plan to address illegal immigration and many other changes. But the Republican majority instead squandered a perfect opportunity for reform. And because of that inaction, the American public sent them packing this past week.

No one can predict what the changes in Washington will bring. And, as I said earlier, I suspect initially the changes will be minor. But the philosophy of governing will change. If people truly understood what may well happen, I believe the results would have been different.

But all of this is simply sour grapes. Accept defeat with grace and humility and work for the betterment of this nation. The new kids on the block may well see that change differently than I would see it, but it doesn't matter. The Democrats have a majority support though something much less than a mandate for change. The world will not come to an end and the nation will survive and prosper. I fear the direction will damage our nation in the long run but the voters have spoken.

Let's just leave it at that.

One final note for my friends within the GOP power. Pay attention to the results from Tuesday and understand what the American public was saying. Arrogance of power can cost you. You weren't "hired" for inaction and bickering. And that is the message delivered Tuesday.

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Michael Jensen
Michael Jensen