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Buck Up People...Progressives Won!

Karen Dolan

The veil of a happy Democratic governing majority is finally lifted.

No, I am not playing the popular elementary school game of
Opposites Day. It's true. Progressives won in the 2010 mid-term
elections.

As touching as it was to see Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) choke up over
the retelling of his hard-knock life story of having to be a waiter in
his dad's bar, tears are not so attractive on the faces of Progressives
this morning. Did we all miss the news flash? PROGRESSIVES WON! Two
significant exceptions are of course the tragic defeat of Sen. Russ
Feingold (D-WI) and the sad loss of prinicpled Rep. Alan Grayson (D-FL).
But, the Congressional Progressive Caucus, the largest caucus in the House Democratic Caucus at over 80 members, emerged virtually unscathed, losing only three members.

By constrast, the conservative Blue Dog Democratic caucus was more
than sliced in half from 54 members to only 26. Further, of the 34
conservative Dems who voted against Obama's Healthcare Reform, a mere 12
won re-election.

Dead weight gone. Good Riddance. The blame for the stalemate to come
can now fall squarely where it belongs...on the anti-progressive,
anti-democratic, anti-populist Republican members of Congress.

Our work is now finally beginning. The veil of a happy Democratic
governing majority is finally lifted. We didn't have it then; We don't
have it now. But what we do have now is a more solidly progressive bunch
of Dems in Congress and a president presumably less encumbered by the
false illusion that playing nice will get him a date with the other
team.

Let's thank Grayson, as well as Reps. John Hall (D-NY) Phil Hare
(D-IL) for their principled time in office. Let's get Feingold on the
ticket as Obama's runningmate in 2012. Let's throw our support
unabashedly behind the Congressional Progressive Caucus and let's push
Obama to finally do the right thing through as many Executive Orders as
we can present to him.

People...Progressives WON!!! Republicans are all over the map.
They're a mess and won't be able to wreak the havoc they seek. We should
be energized. We must be energized. Too much is at stake. The road
ahead isn't so bad as long as we have the big picture and the fighting
spirit spurring us on. Progressives will be the heroes in 2012. Let's
make Obama one too.

An earlier version of this appeared on Huffington Post.


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.
Karen Dolan

Karen Dolan

Karen Dolan is a fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies and directs the Criminalization of Poverty project there. She is author of "The Poor Get Prison: The Alarming Spread of the Criminalization of Poverty.

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