Maybe denial is the driving factor in the 2022 election outcome
The starkest image emerging from the 2022 midterm elections, in my view, is the electoral map of the gubernatorial race in New York. The criminal-friendly Democrat incumbent, Kathy Hochul, who succeeded Andrew Cuomo upon his resignation, won election to a full term by 53%. But if you look at a map of the returns, you'll see that the whole state was swathed in red except for a few blue patches here and there representing populous counties where crime is rampant.
How do you figure that?
Democrat voters are not a monolithic bloc. Yes, some are hardcore ideologues who swooned over Bernie Sanders. Some are recipients of public assistance and dependent on Democrat party largesse. Some are students and recent graduates majoring in insurrection.
But they're not all community organizers, and they don't all hate America. Most are normal, center-left people who habitually vote Democrat. Voters of this type elected Republicans Nelson Rockefeller (1959–73) and George Pataki (1995–2006) governor. They elected John Lindsay (1966–73), Rudolph Giuliani (1994–2001), and Michael Bloomberg (2002–13) mayor of New York City — Republicans all, even Bloomberg at the time.
Image: Map of the New York governor’s race results. New York Post screen grab.
For a red wave to have happened this time around in New York and elsewhere, large numbers of ordinary, center-left, habitual Democrats would have had to break their usual pattern and vote Republican. They didn't.
The crucial question is "Why not?"
A comedy classic by John Cleese, Eric Idle, Graham Chapman, Terry Jones, and Michael Palin gives us a clue. Do you remember the last scene of Monty Python's Life of Brian? The Python crew are strung up on wooden crosses. They are being executed. One would expect an acknowledgment of their imminent demise. But as the camera pans across the tableau, the condemned men start to sing and whistle an upbeat tune: "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life."
The blithe incongruity of the tune made us laugh.
But consider for a moment what the habitual Democrat would have had to acknowledge to vote Republican on November 8:
1. That the president of the United States is a doddering mediocrity.
2. That the person (or persons) responsible for the policies and decisions emanating from the White House is a matter of conjecture.
3. That the administration's policies are blatantly extremist and being implemented with ruinous effect.
4. That proper stewardship of the nation's fiscal and energy resources is utterly lacking — to the point of precipitating a foreseeable crisis.
5. That large numbers of inner-city youth, trapped in broken homes or broken schools, are not being taught respect, self-control, or the difference between right and wrong.
6. That the freedoms, values, and checks and balances on which this country was founded are being left grossly unprotected.
7. That despite mounting challenges, we are not presently capable of deterring our adversaries or defeating them on the battlefield.
Perhaps it's all too much to contemplate. The habitual Democrat voter prefers to remain incongruously oblivious. Look to the last scene of Life of Brian for the perfect analogy. The streets of Manhattan reek of marijuana. New Yorkers are being assaulted on the subways. Criminals have brazenly told their victims, "Go ahead, call the police, I don't care." But "always look on the bright side" and vote for Kathy Hochul.
What would it take for an authentic red wave to crest?
More people raped and shot in broad daylight?
The collapse of the dollar?
A humiliating loss in a scuffle with China?
Or the emergence of a Republican candidate with the combined charisma of Clark Gable, Elvis Presley, and JFK?
Step right up, ladies and gentlemen, and place your bets on what comes first.