Well, everyone worried about Ted Kennedy’s death and what it would mean to any meaningful change to the health care system in the United States. Apart from all the unwarranted hysteria about the Kennedy curse (he was old and he died…), I thought the press handled it pretty well, including The Kosmopolitan Online, which wrote a couple of nice editorials on Ted’s contributions to the Senate and how he was a one-man filibuster and so on and so forth. I have to admit I never liked the guy, but staunchness and constancy aren’t very well spoken for in our representation, apart from on the extremely local level. The paradigmatic Kennedy contributed a lot to health care reform while he was alive; he contributed even more by dying, creating an inamorata around which the Democrats could rally. Democratic zeal for health care after his death is what got the legislation this far.
But now it’s fucked.
In an impossible victory, Scott Brown (R) defeated Martha Coakley (D) approximately 53 to 47 percent to take the late senator’s seat in Massachusetts. The usually overwhelmingly democratic Massachusetts shocked the polity by electing to the senate the 41st member of the GOP, which keeps alive the Republican filibuster for the Senate health care bill. President Obama’s first year in office is shot (unless he’s out of the country), and Democrats can wave goodbye any hopes of an expeditious piece of legislation.
I would understand if Martha Coakley had been in some kind of drug scandal and lost the election; I would understand if she was an ineffective campaigner. No, I think Martha Coakley is another name for President Barack Obama and His Administration…Most democrats seem to have lost a little faith in their “change is coming” mantra, with frustration permeating throughout the House and Senate at the longevity of this convoluted health care bill. Granted, the death of the champion probably didn’t help, but someone famous once said that things will one day be judged by the content of their character instead of outward appearances.
Scott Brown’s campaign platform makes the election even more painful for democrats to swallow: he actively opposes the health care legislation in the House and Senate.
It doesn’t help that Obama had a bad year. What makes things worse is that he knows and admits that the year was bad, calling the Christmas Day attack of the Northwest airliner “a systematic failure” on the part of the administration. The economy’s positive response to the senatorial election can almost entirely be attributed to increased faith in drug companies which would otherwise have been negatively impacted by the President’s health care package. That’s sickening.
I think it’s funny that Scott Brown once posed nude for Cosmopolitan – it means we’re breaking down this crusty, white male paradigm of “what a politician should be” (iniquitous, venal, etc.). I just wish Scott Brown was a (D). Sigh…