Wednesday, November 15, 2006

More tea leaves

Two interesting posts by Markos on the meaning of last week's election for the American political scene. The first looks at the regional shifts in power that are leaving the GOP increasingly isolated in the South.
For the first time in 50 years, the party that controls both chambers of Congress is a minority party in the South. And in the last four presidential elections, the Democratic candidate has either garnered 270 electoral votes, the minimum needed to win, or has come within one state of doing so before a single Southern vote was tallied. Outside the old Confederacy, the nation is turning blue, and that portends a new map for a future Democratic majority.
This has meaning both for Republicans (time for a new plan!) and for Democrats (you can win without the South, but you'll need to make inroads there in the long run). The second post looks at the ideological shift that has brought freedom-loving Westerners (libertarians, in essence) back into the Democratic fold in the face of an increasingly fascist GOP.
Democrats have the chance to become the party that stands for the right of adults to make decisions about their own lives free of moralistic governmental interference and regulation. Those who cast their votes based principally on such libertarian sentiments -- driven by the belief that the government should, to the greatest extent possible, stay out of their lives -- will view the Democratic Party as the far more attractive choice.
Lots of other interesting points made in both of these posts, so I encourage you to go read the rest. I'm sure this is only the tip of the analytical iceberg to come...

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