By now, everyone not living under a rock knows that President Barack Obama has been re-elected. He did so by narrowly winning in "battleground" states such as Florida, Virginia and Ohio, and by holding on to the moderately "blue" states that some thought could have been flipped to his challenger Mitt Romney. He won despite having one of the worst economic records that I can remember, and having the worst fiscal record of any president in our history. He won in spite of the unpopularity of "Obamacare". Presidents Carter and Bush the Elder, to my recollection, were arguably unseated for less.
Like the right in general, I'm quite disappointed. For a while, it appeared that Romney had a good chance to defeat Obama. I had heard about crowds at Romney's appearances that were much larger than those at Obama's, and that in early voting, the turnout in GOP-leaning counties exceeded that of Democrat-leaning ones, or at least was doing better than in 2008. None of that, however, accurately foreshadowed the way in which the voting actually turned out. When Pennsylvania and later Ohio were called for Obama, I realized that Romney's chances were starting to fade.
The reaction to Obama's re-election here on the right has ranged from "we'll get through this just like we've gotten through so much else" to "this country is doomed". Scenarios within the latter category include the 22nd Amendment being repealed and Obama having more terms, and Obama not letting the 2016 election take place and then staying in office indefinitely, either way continuing his leftist agenda. I don't think either of these is likely to happen. For one thing, when Bush the Younger won re-election in 2004, some on the left thought that he would somehow stop the 2008 election and afterwards stay in office, which turned out to be a ridiculous fantasy. On the other hand, getting through the next four years is not going to be easy. What we've seen in Obama's first term, we will get more of in the second. A president arrogant enough to bypass Congress to institute a partial de facto amnesty for some illegal aliens and to enforce bureaucratically-created regulations on the coal industry, is probably not going to show any restraint or magnanimity after being re-elected. Although Obama won about 51% of the popular vote, roughly the same as Bush in 2004, I don't expect anyone on the left to dig out their old "51% is not a mandate" bumper stickers in order to get him to use caution.
I don't believe - yet - that our country, its economy and its freedoms will be inevitably doomed by the time 2016 rolls around. But on the other hand, if there is indeed a point of no return somewhere ahead of us, the second Obama term may get us there more quickly.
For more reading:
APA Guy at Redstate gives us his take on what we're in for.
Conservative T & T at T & T News N' Music reacts to the election.