ENERGY! Well instant analysis is ususally wrong and perhaps that holds for this post. TEA Party energy both helped and hurt the GOP and now the main question is how does that energy translate into focus on GOP pressure points and Congressional activity. I am guessing that a lame duck session will in fact be lame with the highest priority acting on the CR [Continuing Resolution] to keep the federal government running after December 3rd and also to lift the debt ceiling. Both these actions could provide an early indication of the rough slogging ahead for an administration that after two years seems to me to be sagging the sprinter's sag after the dashs and not reflecting the pacing of the long distance runner. Could be wrong of course.
Okay what to me are the three most important elections to focus on for long-term impacts. First is election of Cuban-American Marc Rubio in Florida where Crist might have won if the DEM had pulled out. Probably not important that Rubio outpolled Christ and DEM combined. But reason that election is important sets up Jeb Bush nicely for Presidential campaign for President in 2012 and makes really interesting how US reacts to death of Castro if it occurs in next several years. I argue that NO President can be elected without Florida, Texas or California and ususally needs combination thereof. Jerry Brown, newly elected Governor of CA is not going to run for President again so California will not have a favorite son. Does not mean that Florida and TEXAS, one or both will not have one in 2012.
Second most important election to federal office--Portman in Ohio. This guy is for real substantively. He will be dominate force in the Republican Senate that will exist after taking over majority in 2012. Only a huge Presidential turnout for DEMS and victory will keep Republicans from Senate majority in the 113th Congress IMO. Unless Hillary is on ticket one way or another no chance for DEMS to re-elect OBAMA in 2012. Still predicting his withdrawal. Biden's also.
Okay, third most important election to Senate is Blumenthal in Connecticut. He will be running the DEMS in the Senate before very long either as Minority Leader of Majority leader before this decade ends. Watching Blumenthal and Portman duel as freshman Senators will be refreshing fun and very very substantive fight for future of the Senate. The other DEMS are tired and Reid may want to give up as Majority Leader voluntarily but let's just see.
Fun new governor to watch, Kasich in Ohio. This guy is the ultimate political bull and the real real thing. He is going to rough march reapportioned Ohio in the Republican stronghold it was throughout the post-civil war period. This guy has rough edges but could be Presidential timber. His problem is Portman, his state's junior US Senator.
I would argue that virtually none of the newly elected DEMS or re-elected DEMS have the drive, energy, competence to be factors in the long run outside of Blumenthal in Connecticut. The DEMS bench is extremely weak and the Presidency of Barack Obama has shown so far no sign of mentoring and of note is another Congress with NO black US Senators.
Well all for now!