I’ve been sick today, and so I’ve been too tired to write a post about last night’s election results. I feel a little better at the present moment, so I’ll write my post now, but it will be a fairly light post rather than an in-depth discussion.
I was happy about four things last night. First, there was the election and re-election of pro-life Democrats to various political offices. The group Democrats for Life of America mentioned a number of pro-life candidates for the Democratic Party, such as Joe Donnelly, who beat controversial tea-partier and pro-lifer Richard Mourdock in the Indiana race for the U.S. Senate, and others. Speaking personally, I do not know what the best law would be when it comes to abortion. But I am appreciative when Democrats include in their support for social justice a high regard for the life of the vulnerable unborn. 2012 must have been an especially tough year for pro-life Democrats, as Barack Obama and the national Democratic Party emphasized their pro-choice position to get the support of women, as well as allowed their pro-choice position (among other things) to take them to victory. I myself voted with the Democrats, notwithstanding my reservations about their pro-choice abortion stance. And so it’s refreshing that there were pro-life Democrats who won last night, and I hope that this presages more diversity on abortion within the Democratic Party.
Second, I appreciated the election of two solid progressives who are willing to fight for their beliefs and the well-being of the American people. I think specifically of Elizabeth Warren, who was elected to be a U.S. Senator from Massachusetts, and Tammy Baldwin, who will represent Wisconsin in the U.S. Senate. Regarding Warren, I enjoyed this passage in an article in Business Week, which has even more significance now that she has won: “Congressional Republicans, Wall Street bankers, and business lobbyists will be confronted with the possibility that by driving Warren out of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB),which she helped establish, and which they agitated to keep her from heading, they created a far bigger and more threatening animal: a hugely ambitious senator with national star power, command of financial affairs, and the stature to influence President Obama (should he prevail) or play the role of maddening foil to President Romney.” Well said! And, on Tommy Baldwin, she is a strong proponent of a single-payer health care system, and she has criticized Obamacare because she thinks that it is corporate welfare for the pharmaceuticals and inhibits Medicare from negotiating for lower drug prices. Both Warren and Baldwin will be needed voices in the U.S. Senate.
Third, I liked the attitude of conciliation, as Mitt Romney’s web site played Obama’s acceptance speech, and Obama pledged to meet with Mitt Romney to discuss the future of this country. Obama also thanked those who participated in the Romney campaign. While all this may look standard, it was meaningful to me because of things that I’ve heard (from watching pundits on Charlie Rose’s show, for example) about Obama and Romney not liking or respecting each other, as well as constructive criticism of Obama that says that Obama will have to work harder in his second term to form relationships with a variety of people (i.e., supporters, businesspeople, legislators, etc.). I hope that President Obama can do this, without compromising significantly on progressive principles.
And, fourth, there were things that I liked about Mitt Romney’s concession speech, and Barack Obama’s acceptance speech. Mitt Romney said that Ann would have made a great First Lady, and I agree with him on that, as happy as I am that Michelle Obama will continue to be the First Lady for the next four years. I have liked Ann Romney’s participation in her husband’s campaign because she added a human element to it, as she appeared on The View, hosted Good Morning America one morning, and was on late-night talk shows. She was certainly an asset to her husband’s campaign, and I could tell from what Mitt said about his wife in his concession speech that he really loves her. Regarding Obama’s speech, I thought it noteworthy that Obama mentioned the problem of climate change, for a number of leftists have complained that climate change has not been much of a theme in the 2012 election. But Obama signaled that he is still committed to addressing it.