Nov 082004
Authors: JP Eichmiller

As far as the election goes, America has spoken, and it sounds

like a bumbling idiot. Four years of brewing over the 2000 election

results, massive voter registration drives, record spending on

political advertising, and nothing changes. Almost all who

supported President Bush four years ago again cast their electors

for the GOP, while those who voted for Al Gore, with the addition

of New Hampshire, sided with the senator from Massachusetts.

While George W. Bush and his supporters awoke Wednesday morning

feeling vindicated over the occurrences of the last four years,

those on the losing side began to realize that their version of the

American dream would be put on hold for at least another term.

Looking beyond the presidential election, Democrats had little else

to feel encouraged about. The GOP stranglehold on the House and

Senate has increased. The chief justice of the Supreme Court has

been stricken with a terminal form of cancer, which will presumably

allow President Bush to nominate a justice from his list of


So what is a Democrat to do? I would be the first to admit it is

a struggle not to feel completely disenfranchised. Try, however, to

resist the urge to pack up your bags and move to Belize before you

search for the silver lining.

Nationally, this is a wakeup call for our nation’s oldest

political party. As the former Democratic Senate majority leader

from Maine, George Mitchell, noted, the Democrats need to reassess

themselves so that once again the party can become a national

party. The current divide of red-state, blue-state has left a void

in the heartland for the Democratic Party. What is needed, what

America yearns for, is a uniter along the lines of Bill Clinton and

Ronald Reagan. Recall that in 1992 Clinton carried present-day

Republican strongholds such as Tennessee and Montana, and that

during the ’80s Reagan was able to captivate left-leaning states

such as California.

Locally, Democrats have more reason to feel good about

themselves since the original JFK was alive. For the first time

since 1960, both the state House and Senate in Colorado are under

Democratic control. In what may be a preview to what is about to

occur in Washington, the Republicans in Colorado have become a

fractured party fighting between those with moderate versus extreme

views. In fact, it was the Republicans’ decision to back polarizing

candidates, which led to their statewide defeat.

What all this reinforces is that the best thing that ever

happened to George W. Bush’s career was the tragedies of Sept. 11,

2001. Were it not for those terrorists attacks that happened on his

watch, there would be nothing else to focus on other than the

current administration’s ineptness. Any war that was premeditated

would be seen as the personal Bush crusade for which it has become.

Bush’s lack of transparency and high degree of subterfuge would not

be judged in the interest of national security, but as the Big

Brother-type government George Orwell tried to warn about.

Here in Larimer County we must unfortunately continue to be

represented nationally by Marilyn Musgrave. Radicals such as

Musgrave prove the need for a three or more party system where

those on the far right and left can be more accurately represented.

That the Republican Party has been taken hostage by the religious

right and those with extreme views is the real tragedy of the past

two elections. By selling themselves out in order to be elected,

the majority of Republicans who could be considered moderates have

lost their voices of reason.

JP Eichmiller

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