Sorry about the length of this post....it was hard to condense.
Barack Obama won the presidential election over John McCain by a wide margin. Obama currently has 52% of the popular vote and 349 electoral college votes with North Carolina still in the balances. Obama defeated McCain in the popular vote by a margin of 6%, over twice the margin W. won with in 2004. Obama's win is a clear mandate from American voters for our first black president to move forward on the policy initiatives he campaigned on.
Predictably, the Villagers and the obstructionists have already launched a new counter-meme in hopes of slowing Obama's progressive agenda.
Preposterously, these Village of the Damned Idiot People are insisting that our country is center-right and therefore Obama had better watch his liberal self while governing. Mind you, we just elected a black Illionois senator characterized by Republicans everywhere as the "most liberal senator in the Senate", we gave this liberal senator more votes than any other presidential candidate in American history, and he won the election by a very wide margin.
Working from the premise that nipping wrongheaded stuff in the bud is the best policy, let's review this new conservative talking point.
First the claims....
GOP STRATEGIST BAY BUCHANAN: There’s no question in my mind [the United States is still a center-right country].
NBC’S TOM BROKAW: This country, even with the election of Barack Obama last night, remains a very centered country, or maybe even center right in a lot of places.
KARL ROVE: Barack Obama understands this is a center-right country and he smartly and wisely ran a campaign that emphasized it. Link
Chris Cilliza of the Washington Post....
(In 2006) In the Post survey, just 22 percent of the likely voter sample called themselves "liberals" while 38 percent self-identified as "moderates" and 37 percent as "conservatives."
Governing and campaigning are not the same thing. And, in a country that -- if the Post/ABC survey is to be believed -- still tilts center-right, Obama must be careful not to drift too far to the left in the heady early days of his administration. Link
Newsweek's Jon Meacham...
Should Obama win, he will have to govern a nation that is more instinctively conservative than it is liberal--a perennial reality that past Democratic presidents have ignored at their peril.
Not sure what "instinctively conservative", you know, actually means, but I don't think casting some 64 million votes for the GOP-claimed "most liberal senator in Congress" was "instinctively conservative."
Charles Krauthammer, an AB Journal favorite....
"McCain is the quintessential center-right candidate. Yet the quintessential center-right country is poised to reject him."
Well how then could a "quintessential center-right country" overwhelmingly vote for the liberal Obama....Krauthammer, the quintessential wingnut, asks....and then answers....
"The hunger for anti-Republican catharsis and the blinding promise of Obamian hope are simply too strong." Link
See? The "quintessential center-right country" wasn't using it's head, like Krauthammer always does. The country was just letting off steam and/or allowing itself to be hypnotized by Obama's irresistably devilish words of hope. Charles-the-Serious, apparently, thinks American voters are a bit gullible.
Steve Benen of the Washington Monthly asks....
if the country were to move from center-right to center-left, how would we know? What metric would we use? At what point would even the most closed-minded, sycophantic Republican hack have to say, "Fine, you're right, it is a center-left country"?
Benen offers some answers...
How about a Democratic president, Senate, House, governors, and polling data showing Americans support universal healthcare, are pro-choice, oppose the war in Iraq, and support the Democratic agenda on everything from the environment to the minimum wage to international diplomacy? Link
Benen sets forward inarguable points that the Americans in Krauthammer and Meacham's heads are really in favor of quite a few, you know, liberal, policies. Not so "quintessentially conservative", after all. So those progressive-policy-believing-voters went out and voted overwhelmingly for not only the "most liberal senator in the Senate" but while they were at it, they swept in even more members of the progressive party as well.
Does that sound like what a bunch of center-right voters would do?
I saved the most hacktacular for last....
Mr. "I'll ban you from commenting if you openly disagree with me" Matt Farley, yet another Ohio conservative hack, may have provided the answer to Steve Benen's question. According to Farley, here is how we'll know for sure that we are no longer a "quintessentially center-right nation"....
We lost some significant ground, but all was not lost. This is still a center-right country and if you question that realize that California just passed a gay marriage ban.
The American people have spoken: They have elected Barack Obama to be the next President of the United States. They have also re-asserted center-right principles. Link
For "thanks, but no thanks to comments" Farley, the proof that we have become a center-left country will be entirely based on our nation's acceptance of gay marriage. Yep...that's the test now. As long as America rejects equal rights for gays, according to the hack, Farley, we will still be a center-right country.
Farley found hope for his quintessential center-right hacksterism in rights-denying state initiatives. So, for him, that is how we'll know when America has finally abandoned center-right status and are entering the hell of center-left existence....when gays gain equality.
Summarizing the hack Farley......'yeah, Americans may be for national health care, governmental energy initiatives, public jobs programs, keeping abortion legal, higher taxes on the wealthy, protection of the environment, diplomacy with enemies, and ending the occupation of Iraq. Yeah, Americans may have cast a record 64 million votes for the most liberal senator in the Senate...but by God, they're still about 50-50 on gay marrriage, so America is still a center-right nation.'
I ask you....are those sound thought processes we can believe in?
Be on the lookout for the insidious spreading of this phony "nation is center-right" narrative. It isn't true.....not one instinctively quintessential bit of it.
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