Last Tuesday, Scott Walker attracted 1,334,450 votes from Wisconsinites, eclipsing his 2010 vote total by more than 205,000. He expanded his victory margin by roughly two percentage points. The final round of public opinion polls demonstrated strong and growing support for his controversial -- and successful -- budget reforms. The Left spent almost a year and a half, endless protests, and tens of millions of dollars on an elaborate electoral tantrum. They struck out. To most rational people, this all seems like a fairly catastrophic string of results for Wisconsin's Democrats. Fortunately, the self-professed "reality based community" is setting the record straight, explaining that the comprehensive beating they suffered was really a big win, or something. Confused? I'll let Howard Dean elucidate the nuance:
Fascinating. Last week was a victory for Badger State Democrats because (a) they won back the State Senate, and (b) the base "came around," whatever that means. Let's examine these pearls of insight. Yes, Democrats very narrowly won one out of four contested State Senate seats on Tuesday. This technically delivers them a single-vote "majority." But as we pointed out, Wisconsin's legislature has already gaveled out of session for the year and isn't scheduled to reconvene until 2013. In the interim will be the November elections, in which Republicans are expected to gain at least two seats, due to favorable redistricting. (For instance, the district that Democrats just recaptured will no longer exist as currently constituted). In other words, there is a very good chance that the new Democratic Senate "majority" in Wisconsin will never actually meet. Pretty thin gruel for a "victory." And I'm not exactly sure what Dean meant when he started muttering about "the base" -- or how Mitt Romney's likeability has anything to do with Wisconsin, for that matter. Sure, the state's Democrats overwhelmingly voted for Barrett, but that wasn't nearly enough to put him over the top. And didn't nearly four in ten union households vote for Walker? And isn't the Lefty base currently threatening not to turn out for Obama in November? That's unserious posturing, of course, but I'm still stumped as to how Dean's brain permits him to twist last week's outcome into some great unifying moment. If anything, his side's base is shattered at the moment, and in need of repair. Since I'm rapidly becoming fluent in Democrat newspeak, allow me to be the first to wish Dean & Co another glorious "win" in November.
UPDATE - I should have also mentioned that MSNBC declared Barack Obama Tuesday's big winner, relying on inaccurate exit polling. The most predictive pre-recall election poll found the presidential race tied in Wisconsin, as did Michael Barone, after he readjusted the exits to reflect the actual results. Plus, who could forget the White House's howler of a statement asserting that Walker's emphatic win had somehow sent him a "powerful" rebuke. I genuinely hope these guys continue to indulge this brand of intense self-deception.
Guy Benson is Townhall.com's Political Editor. Follow him on Twitter @guypbenson. He is co-authors with Mary Katharine Ham for their new book End of Discussion: How the Left's Outrage Industry Shuts Down Debate, Manipulates Voters, and Makes America Less Free (and Fun).
Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography
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