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Sobering Victory

John Podhoretz agrees with Boehner that "This is not a time for celebration."  Boehner hit the right note exactly.  This lack of enthusiasm (note lack of balloons at the gathering where he spoke last night) after a great victory forces reflection on the body politic.  Good.  He knows that the hard part starts this morning.  The other side can continue to say silly things (DNC chair Tim Kaine: "Voters sent a message that change has not happened fast enough"), but we must take this opportunity to make ourselves as serious as possible.  We must earn the authority the people have given us.  Boehner's talk and disposition last night were nearly perfect.  I hope he keeps it up.  He seems to know that now is when the real politics starts.

Michael Barone has some good, what he calls random, thoughts on the elections.  He also has a few cautionary notes.

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Interesting contrast to be seen at the Harry Reid victory party . . . confetti everywhere:

Really Harry?

Why in the world would you chastise Harry Reid for throwing a victory party? Are you consistent in chastising all politicians who threw victory parties with (or without) confetti last night?

The cheap seats are cheap for a reason.

Not chastising him. I hope he keeps up that self-congratulatory posture. The party of which he is a notorious leader was just handed its tush. If he thinks that's an occasion for confetti, that's an interesting observation . . . that's all. And its a fair comparison when contrasting Reid with Boehner. What happened in all the rest of the individual races and their "celebrations" is no matter. This one was more symbolic of the attention each party has paid to the national mood and the self-absorption of their respective leaders. Please. Buy your own ticket for the cheap seats.

Well, let's examine the contexts for each of these speeches, shall we?

Boehner's takes place in front of the "Pledge for America" banner in a Washington Ballroom while Reid's takes place in Nevada as part of his personal senatorial victory party I'll grant you that Reid is standing in front of a Nevada State Democratic Party banner, but at least he is in the state that he represents and that he will continue to represent after a hard fought campaign. Unless I'm mistaken, Boehner is from Ohio, not Washington, DC isn't he?

Seems like those are two completely different contexts, one of which is deserving of a celebration. One is representing the face of a party that he represents, while the other is representing the face of the state he represents. One is crying...

Reid was in Nevada because he was in serious danger of losing it. Boehner didn't have the necessity of worrying about his own seat for the simple reason that he is not unpopular in it. Neither did he have the compulsion to put himself in front of the interests of the party or the meaning of this election--he is in sync with both. He was in Washington because that is the place where Ohio sent him to do the work he has to do . . . it's not a time for the leader of either party to worry about parties. You may wish that it appeared to be something other than what it is . . . but in times like this, character shows.

He was in Washington because he is the House Minority (presumptive Majority) Leader. He was there representing the party. There's nothing wrong with that...he behaved in a manner reflective of his stature (excepting the annoying weepiness).

Reid, while the leader of the Senate was, as you note, in Nevada fighting a rough campaign, and celebrating his victory as was his right. He was not there as Senate Majority Leader. He didn't speak for the party...he spoke for himself as a candidate. Both played their roles appropriately.

"He seems to know that now is when the real politics starts."

...and he's eager to get started, right after he catches some rays (that skin doesn't tan itself, ya know!) and gets in a couple quick rounds of golf.

Really enjoying the insightful "lack of balloons" versus "confetti everywhere" political analysis, too, btw... Sub-Fox greatness.

A golf comment? Poor choice.

Don't forget the "tan" comment. That's a new one! And a deep insight, too!

Yeah . . . observations about triumphalism are really "Sub-Fox greatness" . . . but golfing/tanning comments qualify a body for NPR (and I do not joke).

I hear Snooki's looking for a man who is on top of his GTL routine. Boehner should look into that. I'm pretty sure Snooki would be DTF.

Well, the thing is, it's true that Boehner actually is an orange, golf-addicted crybaby - not some principled statesman.

If NPR wants to offer me a job for noticing that, I'd consider it.

And I got your truly lame triumphalism right here, Julie:

I doubt that Mr. Schramm meant his blog-post title in jest, but considering this item, it is funny.

A Washingtonian survey of congressional aides, Hill staffers and the like brought this result:

"Party Animal

1. John Boehner (R-Ohio)

2. Tie: Patrick Kennedy (D-R.I.), Bill Shuster (R-Pa.)

3. Mike Honda (D-Calif.)

The good-time GOP leader polled more than twice the votes of anyone else."

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