Last week’s election of Massachusetts Republican Scott Brown as a senator is a proverbial “canary in a coal mine” for the Democratic Party. In a state where Democrats outnumber Republicans three to one, the late Senator Edward Kennedy’s seat, held by the Democrats for over three decades, passed to an unabashed Conservative. Kennedy was a dedicated advocate of socialized medicine, yet Brown, whose stated intention is to block passage of the health care bill, soundly defeated his Democratic opponent, Martha Coakley. In a stroke of irony, one of the most liberal states in the country put an end to the liberal juggernaut in Washington. Now that Republicans possess a 41st opposition vote in the Senate, the filibuster-proof Democratic supermajority, along with any chance of passing healthcare reform, is finished.
The Democratic Party had been working to nationalize health care with reckless abandon. Their health care bill, which was crafted in secret, was not even read by the legislators before it came to a vote, and several corrupt deals were brokered to buy off a 60-vote majority in the Senate: Senator Mary Landrieu was apportioned $300,000,000 of taxpayer dollars for her home state of Louisiana, and Nebraska, home to Senator Ben Nelson, won an indefinite exemption from Medicare taxes. Of course, Republicans were never once involved in the process of health care reform. With a filibuster-proof majority, liberals did not need their votes to pass a bill, so they shut Republicans out completely. The blame for this remarkably unpopular health care legislation rests solely on the Democrats, and they have paid for it dearly in this election.
Following Scott Brown’s victory, the Democratic leaders began acting like the walking ghost survivors of a nuclear explosion. Aimless, confused and delusional, their work on national health care came to a screeching halt. Signaling a dramatic change of pace, Senator Chris Dodd cautioned his fellow Democrats to “take a breather [on health care] for a month, [or] six weeks.” With the Democratic caucus deeply divided between nervous Blue Dog moderates and disgruntled liberals seeking a more radical takeover of healthcare, Speaker Nancy Pelosi admitted that, “in its present form, without any change, I don’t think its possible to pass the Senate [health care] bill in the House.” “People are angry,” admitted Obama, but he insisted that the anger was over “what’s happened [in] the last eight years.”
An interesting theory, except President Bush never tried to nationalize health care. In reality, both the anger of the electorate and the victory of Scott Brown are directly related to Obama’s radical domestic policies. His party’s overreaching has resulted in the failure of his most ambitious policy initiative, and it made even the deep Blue state of Massachusetts vulnerable to a Republican victory. No Democratic politician will be safe during this year’s midterm elections, for the American people are preparing to take back Washington by voting principled Conservatives into office. President Obama may outlast this wave of discontent, but the Democratic Party will be held accountable for its heedless irresponsibility.