Many Republicans are trying to deconstruct the meaning of the Obama election so that it comes out meaning nothing at all.
But Ryan Sager, writing in Rupert Murdoch's New York Post on Saturday, tells it like it is. The Grand Old Party is really a small cook-out with rancid meat as fare.
Sager sums it up thusly: "A party resting on an ever-shrinking demographic base: Dixie. Look at John McCain's likely final 173 electoral votes: 113 of them come from the South (defined as the 11 states of the old Confederacy plus Kentucky and Oklahoma). That's 65 percent of his electoral votes--and much of the rest comes from the sparsely populated Plains states." Actually, Obama won two of the Confederate states, Virginia and North Carolina. This more than suggests that the Republican base so painstakingly put together with racial insinuations and undertones in the slave states has also collapsed.
New Mexico, Colorado and Nevada went to George Bush in 2004. They fell to Obama by 15 percent, seven percent, and 12 percent, respectively.
The Post column has fascinating other details about the erosion of Republican strength where it was thought to be invulnerable.
And did you see the New York Times Friday dispatch by Laurie Goodstein reporting that Obama received a full third of evangelical and born-again Christians.
I suppose this all means nothing.
I did get an e-mail from a friend pointing out that less people voted in this year's presidential elections than in 2004. Here's his text:
In 2004, 121.7 million people went to the polls in the Bush-Kerry election.. This year with 99.7 percent of precincts reporting, just 120.1 million Americans went to the poll in the Obama-McCain, election. Since the population of eligible voters increased by 6.4 million between the 2004 and 2008 elections, a larger proportion of eligible voters abstained from the 2008 election than from the 2004 election. So, by any measure, the 2008 election attracted fewer voters than the preceding election.
But this has nothing to do with whether Obama has a mandate or not. It shows that the Republicans and conservatives didn't vote. And perhaps this is because their ultra-free-market and anti-egalitarian ideology failed. Not only failed the country but also them.