The 2006 Election

Many conservatives, myself included, were disappointed by the results of the election earlier this week. Democrats took control of Congress by winning enough seats to take the majority in both the House of Representatives and the Senate. Most prognosticators had predicted that only the House would be Democratically controlled after the election but that the Senate was not likely to change hands. The American people apparently had different ideas in mind.

Talk show hosts such as Sean Hannity told their listeners that it was vitally important to keep liberals like Nancy Pelosi, John Murtha, Harry Reid, and others out of positions of power within the Congress. The point was made that someone as far left as Pelosi is should not be the third in line to become President. It was said that Democrats would jeopardize our position in Iraq by weakening our war effort. Many claimed that liberals would roll back the Bush tax cuts that have stimulated much economic growth and a strong economy.

While these are valid points, in my opinion, the one thing that the people of our country showed on Tuesday was that those in power in Washington D.C. who have not been listening to their constituents can and will lose their jobs if they fall out of touch with the very people who put them into power in the first place.20

Some claim the war in Iraq was the determining factor that these Republicans lost their respective races. I don’t think it’s necessarily that easy. Yes, the war in Iraq has become unpopular but I think most politicians, both liberal and conservative, realize that we cannot simply just cut and run from the situation.

In my opinion, the reason these “conservatives” lost and lost big was because they betrayed their conservative roots. They failed, in an attempt to placate Hispanic voters, to secure our borders by whatever means possible. They also followed the example of the previous Democratic majority (prior to the Republicans gaining a majority in the 1994 elections) by spending money like it was going out of style. They went against two of the very things that conservatives are known for supporting, i.e. smaller government and national security. I believe had they stuck to their convictions, they most likely would have held on to their majorities in both houses of Congress.

Basically, the Republicans fell into the same trap that their Democratic colleagues before them did: craving power more than representing their districts and acting in the best interests of their country. They followed polls more closely than they listened to the phone calls and emails from the people in their home state. That’s a lesson they need to learn if they ever wish to gain a majority again.