Four More Years

Let’s all take a deep breath. It’s all over. At times the race was very close, but in the end, the American people decided to give the President four more years to promote a more left-leaning social policy and economic expansion, instead of fiscal conservatism. The American public supports a more fair tax plan that makes the richest Americans pay their fair share, and we continue funding institutions to help the poorest Americans get back on their feet. The American public vehemently rejected the old guard of the Republican Party and proved that we won’t stand for a redefinition of rape: a child from rape is not something God intended to happen, it can’t be legitimate and we certainly won’t stand for a Vice Presidential candidate that defines rape as only “forcible rape.” Women need to be in charge of their own bodies. Equality extends to the LGBTQ community and in Washington and Colorado, marijuana should be legal and taxed to fund government programs. The election was a referendum on liberal issues. The Romney/Ryan ticket may have received more electoral votes than the McCain/ Palin ticket, but they received more than a million fewer votes than their 2008 compatriots, proving that America is not a center-right nation as Monica Crowley ’90 would have you believe, but instead a center-left nation. 

We care about our people, and we know that there is more to being successful than simply hard work. This election was a referendum on the Affordable Care Act, and it showed that women need to have a more active role in Congress, with both houses hosting the most women after January 20, 2013 than ever before. In Washington, Maine and Maryland, voters proved that love is the only thing that matters: gay marriage is fully legal. In Minnesota, voters once again rallied against religious fundamentalist values and said that an amendment banning same-sex unions was an affront to their moral values. Most importantly, the “99 percent” won. You can be sure that there will be a tax increase on the richest Americans, and the Bush-Era tax cuts will expire. Both campaigns made their tax plans the central issue of the last month of the campaign, and with such a convincing victory by President Obama, it is obvious that Republicans know that the American people support a change in the Bush-Era tax plan. But most importantly, this election was incredible because it showed that the Republican Party has a long way to go before sending a viable candidate to the Presidential race. Colorado was the state that put President Obama past 270 electoral votes, and he won it by almost five percent. So much for Virginia, Ohio and Florida being battleground states – they were just icing on Obama’s victory cake. The Republican Party has to move away from the neoconservative far-right movement in order to take back the moderates in America. It has already happened – Bill Kristol said that the Republicans should take Obama’s tax deals, and even John Boehner said that discussion with Obama will be more about compromise than it has been in the past. The Republican Party is dangerously close to losing an entire generation of voters to the Democrats. Hopefully, when 2016 rolls around, we’ll see Republican candidates closer to McCain and Huntsman and farther from Ryan, Romney and Santorum. 

Judging by recent economic trends, we’re in for four years of economic prosperity. Mix this with a five-seat majority in the Senate, a House that is trending back to a Democratic majority (or at least equality) and a Democratic President and we’re in for a fun few years. Is it too soon to say that I’m excited for 2016? I think we’re at the beginning of a long stretch of smart American politics.

Contact Andy Philipson at [email protected]