Sometime in the early evening, Tuesday, November 2, 2010, we received confirmation that a tidal wave of new Republican members would be elected of the US House. While not unexpected, there it was, and it is a profound opportunity to restore sanity to governance of the country. Obama himself, said it correctly, "it was a shellacking".
Naysayers have already declared this to be "not really a big deal;" business in Washington will continue once the excitement of victory sinks in and the hard work must start. In ordinary times, it would be easy to be cynical and skeptical. The reality of this election tsunami, however, is not the same as past sweeps. With a quick glance at the map of this election outcome, one will be astonished at the Republican/conservative geographic dominance. Aside from some Northeast and Northwest pockets, along with California, it is nearly all red.
The key difference from 2010 to other such elections: there is a new sheriff in town, watching how the boys and girls behave, and the sheriff's ready to punish those who drift off the conservative reservation. That new law enforcement apparatus is the Tea Party Movement, and they will not be kind or accommodating.
With the next House election cycle just two years away, there is no time to squander or margin of error in behavior. These freshmen must come out of the gate swinging, denying the funds to enable the liberal agenda of the past two years, and initiating reform of the unsustainable entitlements already in place. Finally, sensible tax policy is urgent, including the extension of the Bush Tax cuts for at least 2 years, if not making them permanent. Yes, there will be the threat of a Presidential veto; who cares? Obama, too, is running in 2012 and he will be more than casually aware of the Tea Party Movement, that awkward elephant in the room.
The 2010 election was a clear repudiation of any Democrat or Republican who did not and does not display a sense of urgency to bring back fiscally conservative principles of government; smaller and less intrusive, lower taxes allowing people and business decide how to spend their money, no business bailouts, eliminate too-big-to-fail, no deficits or at least ones that are manageable, no stimulus, reforms of entitlements that are affordable and reasonable, restore individual economic dignity with pro jobs policies, rein in and privatize Freddy and Fannie, kill Cap & Trade forever. Any member of Congress, Republican or Democratic, who does not get it, is in for a fight in 2012; the new sheriff will be watching. Ignore this force and reelection efforts will be periled, that is the lesson of 2010 that may not be ignored.