Republicans are poised to take the Senate tomorrow, and Democrats are terrified.
I’ve got hundreds of messages here, “Woe woe woe, what are we gonna do, Jim? It’s the end of the world!”
Folks, first of all, nothing’s won until the votes are counted.
And second, political polls don’t measure reality. That’s not their purpose. Polls, especially the ones pushed relentlessly by agenda driven organizations aren’t designed to reflect reality, instead they exist to shape reality by doing exactly what they are doing – i.e., creating a self-fulfilling prophecy through manipulation of your perception.
The bottom line here is this: if you think you’re defeated, if those polls make you think you’re defeated, you are.
If those polls and your sense of defeat coupled to voter intimidation and deliberate attempts at disenfranchisement keep you home tomorrow, then they’ve done exactly what they were designed to do, hand the Senate to Republicans.
If you already think you’re defeated, you are. Republicans will certainly hold the House tomorrow and they very well may take the Senate. That’s how it works. You win some. You lose some.
America lurches back and forth, left and right and left and right again, like a drunk staggering into the future. Sometimes your party and your ideology is going to win, sometimes it isn’t. And it for damned sure won’t if you don’t get out there and vote for it.
But you know what’s going to happen if Republicans do take the Senate tomorrow?
Do you know what’s going to happen if Conservatives control both houses of Congress?
That’s what will happen.
For the next two years.
So, if you think about it, in most regards, down here on the street, it’ll look pretty much the same as the last two years where Congress has accomplished … nothing. Oh, sure, the very first thing Republicans will do is attempt to repeal Obamacare. They have no choice. They’ll have to – they’ve painted themselves into a corner on it.
And so, the first order of business, right after they all make a big showing of swearing in their new majority by reciting the Constitution, will be a rushed bill through both chambers to repeal the Affordable Healthcare Act. It’s already written.
Republicans will pass a repeal in the House. They might even pass a repeal in the Senate by a simple majority vote, especially if Democrats continue to cravenly run away from the ACA instead of standing their ground and fighting. Instead of reminding Americans why we needed it in the first place and why the majority of Americans, including one hell of a lot of Republicans, benefit from the ACA every day – which is what Democrats should have been doing during their campaigns instead of pissing their pants.
Democrats should have stood with their president when it mattered, but of course they didn’t, they’re never any good in the clutch.
However, while getting a repeal through the House is likely a sure thing, getting it through the Senate isn’t. Turnabout is fair play, right? Especially in Congress and Democrats can place secret holds and engage in filibusters same as Republicans. So getting that repeal through the Senate isn’t a certainty. But if the Democrats continue to crap out and Republicans do get their bill through, they won’t have anywhere near enough of a majority to override a presidential veto.
That’s right, veto.
See, the balance of power? Those constitutional checks and balances Republicans lately like to go on and on about? Well those cut both ways.
In order to get the president to sign a repeal, Republicans would have to actually put forth a serviceable replacement — Republicans would actually have come up with something that does what the ACA does, only better.
Republicans would actually have to create an act that provides access to affordable healthcare for millions of Americans, one that fixes the problems with Medicare and keeps it solvent, one that keeps all the many, many provisions of the ACA that Americans like and have gotten used over the last two years, and one that fixes all the myriad problems of the ACA. Of course, they could have done that already. Conservatives could have participated in the process right from the start. Congress could have fixed the law, improved it, made it work better. But they didn’t. And they won’t now.
Republicans don’t care about healthcare, one way or the other. This isn’t about healthcare, affordable or otherwise. This is about beating Obama.
This is about putting the black man in the White House in his place once and for all.
So flush with victory, they’ll send a repeal to the president.
And he’ll veto it.
And why wouldn’t he?
No, really why wouldn’t he? He’s got nothing whatsoever to lose.
It’s not like Republicans would be offering to meet him halfway.
It’s not like spineless Democrats can’t abandon him any more than they already have.
It’s not like he’s running for reelection.
So, why would Barack Obama sign a repeal of his signature accomplishment? UnlessRepublicans offered to replace it with something that’s actually better?
And really, the ACA sucks, so if Republicans came up with something better, well, shit, folks, how’s that bad for us?
But they won’t. Republicans can’t come up with anything better. They are pathologically, ideologically incapable of it. It’s just not in their nature. So they most certainly won’t.
And the president will veto their repeal.
And conservatives might hold both houses, but they won’t hold enough of a majority to override a veto. Not even close.
And there things will stop.
And nothing will happen.
So, naturally, the second thing the new Republican majority will do is attempt to impeach the president.
First they’ll threaten Obama with it, better bow down, admit defeat, boy, or else we’ll do it. We will. We mean it.
Forgetting, of course, that if the last five years have proven anything it’s that Obama isn’t much intimidated by conservative threats.
But Republicans, drunk with their new found power and utterly oblivious to the lessons of history will bluster and beat their fleshy chests and threaten impeachment based solely on the idea that being black and liberal in the White House constitutes “high crimes and misdemeanors.” Saner heads among them will caution that they don’t have a case, Constitution-wise, and perhaps sanity will even prevail. Perhaps. But more likely, when the Republican congress figures out that they actually can’t push Obama around, that those checks and balances go both ways, well, then likely they’ll work themselves up into a suicidal frenzy of blood-maddened rage, and maybe, just maybe, they even go through with it.
They can certainly get the Articles of Impeachment through the House. They could do that right now. All it takes is a simple majority vote.
But the Senate? The Senate would actually have to try the president. Publicly.
The House can act like a lynch mob, sure. But the Senate? The Senate would have to present proof. Legal proof, the kind that stands up in court. They’d have to present facts, actual facts, not made up bullshit from Fox News and conspiracy theorists. They would have to provide actual evidence of high crimes and misdemeanors. Republicans have tried this before. This time? This time they don’t even have a blowjob to hang their case on.
So what it comes down to is this: No matter what, to remove Obama from office, Republicans would have to make their case and get two thirds of the Senate to agree. On record. In front of the nation.
And that’s just not going to happen.
So they’ll do nothing.
Because that’s their whole agenda. Repeal the ACA. Impeach Obama. And if that fails, as it inevitably must, then allow nothing to happen. That’s it. That’s all they’ve got. If you want to see what a Republican led majority looks like, look to the House. They can’t even agree on the stuff they agree on.
It’s not Democrats who keep throwing a monkey wrench into John Boehner’s machine, it’s Republicans.
And so what if they take the Senate?
Fix the debt? They won’t do that.
Balanced budget? They won’t do that. In fact, if history is any guide you’ll be lucky to see an unbalanced budget. More likely they’ll just shut the government down again, blame Obama, and go home.
Jobs bill? They won’t do that either. Minimum wage? Forget about it.
Immigration reform? Nope, they sure won’t do that. They won’t even “secure the border,” because that will cost hundreds of billions and require huge amounts of assets, organization, oversight, and a bigger government. And they’ll need the cooperation of the president they just tried to impeach.
Energy policy? They won’t do that. Fixing America’s aging infrastructure? I wouldn’t hold your breath. Banking reform? Middle East policy? Action on climate change? Education? Gun violence? Tax reform? Trade?
Instead we’ll hear endless, endless debate over gay marriage and Benghazi and government overreach, but in the end they’ll do nothing and count it as a victory.
They’ll do nothing and count it as a victory because stopping Obama is all they care about.
Republicans have no big vision, they don’t even have a small vision.
They have no fresh ideas.
The GOP’s message is one of revenge and sullen resentment and fuck you I got mine and nothing more.
They’re on the wrong side of history and they’re going extinct and they know it and it makes them small and mean.
And the very best they can offer for the next two years is … nothing.
But if you want more than that, more than nothing, then shrug off your defeat and gather up your friends and all the like-minded Americans you can find and get your ass to the polls.
Sure it’s hard.
Sure it’s an uphill battle.
Sure the odds are stacked against you and the game is rigged.
If your vote didn’t matter, then these rotten sons of bitches wouldn’t be working so damned hard to take it away from you.