The Post Election Entry

Here is an entry for some post-election discussion.  CIVIL comments are welcome.

My first observation:

If the GOP was not going to take control of the Senate, then it is probably good that Sen. Harry Reid won his race in Nevada and will return to as Majority Leader.  Had Reid lost, I believe that Sen. Schumer of NY would have become Majority Leader.  He could have been a more serious obstacle regarding issues most of us think are important.

And, as a Minnesotan, allow me again to apologize for my state’s “election” of Al Franken a couple years back.



Are you blearly-eyed from watching election returns all night?

Are you a liberal, and therefore tired from crying into your pillow?

Are you simply a fan of good coffee and helping people?

If you said “Yes, Father! I am!” to any of those, and even if you didn’t, then you are in desperate need of  the caffeine fix found in a piping hot WDTPRS mug of Mystic Monk Coffee!

Then why not seize this opportunity to refresh your coffee supply by ordering some, say it with me, Mystic Monk Coffee?

They have recently changed their ordering links for those of us who are helping them sell coffee and earn their daily bread.  Therefore, right away, before you think twice…. click on THIS and see what happens?

Mystic Monk Coffee…

It’s swell!

BTW… did you see that they have chocolate-covered espresso beans?

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. kab63 says:

    As a NV resident I really wanted Harry Reid to go, but this morning I am focusing on all the wonderful candidates who did win. Rubio and West in FL are exciting; Benishek won Stupak’s seat in MI, which is a wonderful outcome after Stupak’s pro-life sell-out . . . many blessings.

  2. Jon says:


    You were in NYC on Election Day. I’m curious, was the mighty Z-ballot counted? [Do you know for sure that your ballot was counted?]

  3. TNCath says:

    It will be interesting to see the President’s response to this significant setback for the Democrats.

    Despite his winning reelection, Harry Reid’s clout isn’t what it used to be. The loss of Nancy Pelosi as Speaker of the House as well as the general mood of the country towards him as an “Obama man” does not fare well for his credibility.

  4. EXCHIEF says:

    Brick by brick. The house in 2010. Hopefully the Senate and the White House in 2012. This is not about one party vs another. It is about restoring this nation to the Judeo-Christian principles upon which it was founded. The task for the next 2 years is to hold those newly elected accountable for appropriate votes on the issues that prompted their election. The taste of victory is sweet but will be short lived if the newbies let themselves be compromised by the system.

  5. MattnSue says:

    Great analysis regarding the Majority Leader, Father. I had not thought this through this far. The process is more like chess than checkers. When I first learned to play chess, I would try and “check” my opponent on every turn. The point of chess however is checkmate, not check. Similarly, as in golf, sometimes we must “lay up” and be satisfied in the short term with the lesser of 2 evils.
    My other comment regarding the election is the “line of the night.” from Britt Hume. His point was the strategic advantage the GOP will have in his opinion in “only” capturing the house, while gaining seats but not taking control of the Senate (thus not being able to be blamed for the Gridlock). He mentioned that the Democrats will still control half of the Congress, and the presidency, and in making that point, said a line that only Britt Hume could pull off “…and Obama is still the President. He’s the Big Dude.”
    Who else but Britt Hume could or would use that verbiage?

  6. Henry Belton says:

    The night is a win-win. The country swung back rightward; Reid has value, still, as the wimpy voice of the left. And Heath Shuler – conservative, pro-life, dem won. Blue dogs bring much to the table.

  7. TJerome says:

    a prof-life Dem is an oxymoron so long as that Party worships abortion on demand.

  8. Patikins says:

    I am very pleased (to put it mildly) that Nancy Pelosi will no longer be the Speaker of the House!

    We need pro-life democrats to work within that party to bring about a change in the party platform. [I hope there are “pro-life democrats” left!] I am politically conservative but I am not in principle a party line voter (though I am in practice largely because of abortion and fiscal issues). If more pro-life democrats are elected, it will help move the party away from the radicalism it has embraced in recent years.

  9. Jacob says:

    The three Iowa Supreme Court justices who were up for retention votes this election were all voted out after their 2009 decision legalizing gay ‘marriage’ in Iowa. A first step…

  10. Cavaliere says:

    Not only nationally but also in Minnesota was there a dramatic change where the Republicans overcame a 40 seat deficit in the state House to win control. They also gained control of the state Senate which they haven’t done since the 70’s giving them control of the legislature for the first time in a generation.

  11. Thank you, Father Z. I was hoping that someone someday would apologize for the “election” of Al Franken. ;-) I grew up in Kansas, so I suppose I should apologize for Kathleen Sabelius.

  12. Henry Edwards says:

    Father Z: And, as a Minnesotan, allow me again to apologize for my state’s “election” of Al Franken a couple years back.

    Surely it’s elementary moral theology that you have nothing to confess in this regard unless you were somehow complicit in the fraud by which the election was stolen.

    In any event, from a great distance, it seemed to me that the best news from Minnesota last night was the re-election of Michelle Bachman.

  13. Henry: I think it is mainly out embarrassment that I apologize for the inexplicable electoral choices of fellow Minnesotans.

    Re: Bachman. I hope she isn’t “re-destricted” out of her congressional seat.

  14. irishgirl says:

    I’m mad that Andrew Cuomo was elected Governor of New York State (I fear that there will be a vote on homosexual ‘marriage’ now that he’s in office). I’m also mad that Schumer was re-elected too-I call him a ‘pompous [donkey]’. I wish that New York City and its immediate environs could be made into the 51st state….sigh….
    On the other hand, I’m glad that Nancy Pelosi is getting the boot as Speaker of the House! HOO-RAY!

  15. Scott W. says:

    [I hope there are “pro-life democrats” left!]

    Apparently Joe Manchin, but I don’t know much about him.

  16. Peggy R says:

    In IL, I cautiously am glad of Mark Kirk’s victory (social “moderate” bah!). I am just glad it didn’t go to a Dem, since O once held it. Bill Brady, pro-life Catholic from “downstate” (which is anything 45 mins from downtown Chicago), may have lost by 10K votes or so. I am quite surprised and consider the results suspect. Polling consistently had Brady ahead by quite a bit. No one likes Quinn. He’s been such a bad steward of the state. The Dems continue to hold the statehouse, which is bad for redistricting. The GOP took US House seats from Dems outside of Chicago. The only US House blue south of Chicago is for a normally reliable “pro-life” Dem Catholic who voted for O-Care–wouldn’t even stand with Stupak to announce his change ahead of the vote. His opponent was a flaky woman who meant well. I voted for the flaky woman.

    So, for IL, a partly disappointing night.

  17. AJP says:

    While it would have been good to see Reid go down, I too am somewhat glad that it didn’t happen because of Schumer. That man is beyond insufferable.

  18. Jon says:

    “Do you know for sure that your ballot was counted?”

    Of course, my wife ran the polling station…and it wasn’t on the back of a truck!

  19. rakesvines says:

    If the Senate will filibuster the bills sent by the people, then the people will take down names and voting records as reference for 2012. So, they should not play games specially with repealing the abomination of Obamacare.

    The conservative governors should take matters in their hands like Chris Christie did and stop the decadence introduced through the Federal system by the Democrats. They need to assert State’s rights now more than ever.

  20. PAT says:

    [I hope there are “pro-life democrats” left!]

    Apparently Joe Manchin, but I don’t know much about him.

    Joe Manchin flip-flopped on Cap and Trade and on ObamaCare. First, he supported; now, he claims he’s opposed. Typical of Democrats, and especially “conservative, pro-life” Democrats, he’s a Class A phony.

  21. I notice that, uncorrected by experience, my home state of California has returned Jerry Brown to the governor’s mansion. Well, when he reaches the point where his job is in jeopardy — and he will — he can always resurrect the medfly crisis.

  22. Lirioroja says:


    It’s not just NYC and environs. Albany, Buffalo, Rochester, Binghamton, and Syracuse are all solidly Dem strongholds. That’s all the cities in New York, which means most of the population of the state. As far as our House Representatives go, the congressional districts were divided 50/50 between the Democrats and the Republicans with all the districts that the above mentioned cities are in going to the Dems. No surprise then, that the election went the way it did. New York is a blue state and probably always will be. Our only hope is to evangelize our state so that even if they stay Dem, they will insist on candidates who respect natural law and the dignity of the human person. (That’s the work of several lifetimes for those of us in NYC so please pray for us!)

    At least we can take heart in what Fr. Z noted in his post: thanks to Reid’s re-election Schumer is not the Senate Majority Leader! (Do. Not. Get. Me. Started! on that… man.)

  23. Geoffrey says:

    After another election in which those I voted for did not win, I again ask myself the question: ‘why bother?’

  24. ckdexterhaven says:

    In Arizona CD 5, the democrat, Harry Mitchell was defeated. Harry Mitchell is a Catholic and voted in favor of abortion providing Obamacare. A pro life Republican won Bart Stupak’s (the supposed pro-life Blue Dog democrat) former seat.

  25. priests wife says:

    I DARE the reps who won to be GOOD.

    That is all.

  26. Patikins says:

    I work in academia and in is very quiet today. All my ultra-liberal coworkers must be in mourning!

  27. Margo says:

    I live in New York State and was reading what irishgirl said and Lirioroja’s response to it. So many people in my particular corner of the state (Central NY) share the viewpoint that NYC should become its own entity, the 51st state. I doubt that will ever happen, but I do appreciate what Lirioroja said: “Our only hope is to evangelize our state so that even if they stay Dem, they will insist on candidates who respect natural law and the dignity of the human person.”

  28. lux_perpetua says:

    all i have to say is I am one happy Pennsylvanian!!!

    and yes, my collegiate super-liberal friends are also gloating over how the ‘mama grizzlies’ faired

  29. Desertfalcon says:

    While it was a very good night for we Republicans and a clear wake up call for the Obama administration, in the clear light of morning it was not quite the epic election ala 1948 or 1994 that the ‘talking heads’ kept droning on about during most of the night. Perhaps 2012 will be so but the Democrats retaining control of the Senate was their silver lining. Mr. Obama has neither the more centrist ideology nor the political skills of a Bill Clinton so I’m guessing we are looking at the federal government going into a stand-off until the next general election. One lesson we should take away I think is that while the ‘tea-party’ has revitalised the Republican Party in many ways, the lack of viability of some of it’s candidates is what cost us the Senate. There is a “nut-job” factor that was very damaging in some important races.

  30. Brian Day says:

    WordPress ate my comment. Rather than trying to re-type it, let’s just say that I am disappointed in the California results – especially the re-election of Loretta Sanchez.

  31. In case anyone didn’t know, our new Speaker of the House, John Boehner, is a Catholic with a typical background. He’s from a family of 12 children (at one time not an unusual Catholic occurrence) and grew up in a working class area of greater Cincinnati. He was a Democrat by default (as many working class, ethnic Catholics were until the 1970’s or 1980’s), but saw the light in the 1970’s. He’s also a graduate of Xavier (proving that even conservatives can come out of a liberal/heterodox haven like most Jesuit colleges).

    This article gives a good background sketch of his upbringing:

    In other news here in northeast Ohio (Canton area), another conservative, Catholic – Jim Renacci – won over a 1 term conservative Catholic Dem – John Boccieri. Boccieri, despite claiming to be pro-life, voted in the end for Obamacare.

  32. PAT says:

    Re: Bachman. I hope she isn’t “re-destricted” out of her congressional seat.

    Not likely considering this:

    A stunner: State GOP wins both House and Senate

    For the first time in more than a generation the GOP swept to control of both houses of the Minnesota Legislature.

    The Republicans will be in control of the redistricting.

  33. maynardus says:

    As an inmate overtaxed citizen of the People’s Republic of Massachusetts who usually attends Mass in Rhode Island I can only regard last night’s results with mixed emotions. While most of the rest of the country was awakening to the threats to our freedoms and economic stability posed by the Obama/Pelosi/Reid left-liberal policies, two of the three states with the highest percentages of Catholics (RI #1 @63%, MA #3 @44%) went 100% Democrat. And – like the above-mentioned Lamentable Loretta Sanchez, and her equally-lamentable sister – it’s not just that they’re Democrats, it’s the kind of people that they are. Deval Patrick, Barney Frank, David Cicillini, and the list goes on. 100% pro-choice, 100% pro-gay “marriage”, 100% in favor of more taxes and less freedom. And I wouldn’t trust any of ’em to babysit my kids!

    Last I heard there were still a couple of House races in California which were too close to call, so at least there are some possibilities there -small consolation for our friends on the Left Coast…

  34. TomB says:

    The only pro-life Democrats are those that are running for office. The party has been infiltrated with Communists and socialists, all of whom promote death. That’s how it starts and ends.

    We in Colorado lost the personhood amendment, and inexplicably again elected a pro-death Democrat senator and governor. I’m happy that other states awakened, but we in Colorado clearly have our work cut out for us.

  35. asophist says:

    Don’t know what happened to the comment I posted that showed up temporarily, earlier. Rather than go through all the effort of re-typing it, I’d just like to comment that I called myself an “Other” in Fr. Z’s categories because the only reason I vote the way I do is to make my vote count in the pro-life arena. Other than that, I have no political ideology. Is Catholic social teaching actually reflected very well by either party? Probably not, though I suspect many Republicans come closer to it than almost ANY Democrat. Let’s pray for the future of our country.

  36. Desertfalcon says:

    “Is Catholic social teaching actually reflected very well by either party? Probably not, though I suspect many Republicans come closer to it than almost ANY Democrat. Let’s pray for the future of our country.”

    @ asophist

    I think that statement is about right.

  37. Serviam1 says:

    I’m convinced Massachusetts functionally is a one party state. None of the “serious” Independent/Republican challenges had enough traction to result in serious power shift in yesterday’s election. It’s utterly frustrating to this former North Shore (Cape Ann) native, now living within the Boston city limits. At the polls there is typically a strong union presence and we have our share of lefty “moonbats”.

    I am convinced the failure of the Church’s ability to properly form over two generations of Massachusetts Catholics has created a situation where cultural Catholics are virtually indistiguishable from secular Liberalism. It’s as if the vacume has been filled by “feel good” liberalism in place of true Caritas. In many (if not most) Boston parishes the 17% of baptized Catholics that actually deign to participate in the Sacramental life of the Church have been fed a steady diet of a new Social Justice version of the Faith that is compatable with political liberalism. Can we wonder why the vote goes the way it does here? Catholic potentially form the largest voting bloc in this state? We need a cultural change. Right now it’s pathetic and the local Church and continued deformation of Vatican II shares much of the blame. Has anyone seen the recent Massachusetts Bishops Statement on the Vote. Talk about ambiguity!

  38. nanetteclaret says:

    Geoffrey –

    ***After another election in which those I voted for did not win, I again ask myself the question: ‘why bother?’***

    So you can look at yourself in the mirror and say, “At least I tried. I didn’t take my right to vote for granted.”

  39. Serviam1 says:

    Desert Falcon,

    In Massachusetts, most Republicans, Liberterians and (many) Independents paint themselves as Conservative, which is a political term. Under the surface most are “Fiscal” Conservatives and are either Liberal or indifferent to social issues, particularly regarding public morality.

    Homosexual unions are simply treated as a vocal (albeit) small, well educated, affluent and powerful subset of the professional class that “successful” politicians consider an important constituency and ally to gain political power. Unfortunately, over 90% who fit this political profile in greater Boston are baptized or have families who are historically Catholic.

    “Fiscal Liberals” who are “Social Conservative” as former Mayor and Ambassador Ray Flynn are a rare species these days. Jack Kennedy, by today’s standards would probably have fallen under this profile.

  40. EXCHIEF says:

    BO has it all figured out. In his press conference (with teleprompter I might note) he attributed yesterday’s GOP gains to “him not doing enough to restore jobs” Yep, as always, it is all about him. I guess he hasn’t figured out that yesterday had little to do with not restoring jobs. It had everything to do with: his destruction of the economy increasing the loss of jobs; his bailout bills; his health care (NOT!!) bill; his apologizing for the USA on every trip abroad; his and his wife’s extravagant expeditures of tax payer’s money on vacations; his elimination of references to God, his leftist/socialist allegiances and agenda and on and on and on….nope, none of that. Just make it simple “HE didn’t create enough jobs.” The guy is clueless on the one hand and diabolical on the other.

  41. Paul M says:

    Anita Moore OPL says:
    3 November 2010 at 11:22 am
    I notice that, uncorrected by experience, my home state of California has returned Jerry Brown to the governor’s mansion. Well, when he reaches the point where his job is in jeopardy — and he will — he can always resurrect the medfly crisis.

    Regarding Jerry Brown, I was 9 when he was first elected oh so long ago. My oldest is almost 9 to watch Act II…surreal.

    Regarding Boxer…..shameful. what can you say about the most strident pro-abort in Congress? Trees are more important than unborn children…..

    Is California salvageable? The last thread of hope may be the redistricting commission for both state and federal offices. I’ll also stay optimistic that the state can find it’s moral compass. We’ve had some good episcopal appointments of late with Orange next year, Fresno in ’12 and San Diego in ’13. “Keep hope alive” :)

  42. irishgirl says:

    Lirioroja and Margo-I’m from Central NY too. I voted straight Republican (I’m a registered Independent). But I get very discouraged by the ‘dysfunction’ of the government that’s in Albany.
    Our state is in a mess….Holy Martyrs of Auriesville, pray for us! St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, St. John Neumann, St. Frances Xavier Cabrini, pray for us! Blessed Mother Marianne Cope (she lived in my hometown of Utica as a child and young woman, then entered the convent in Syracuse), pray for us!
    Lirio-I’m glad you share my contempt of Chuck Schumer. I repeat your ‘Do. Not. Get. Me. Started!….on that man.’

  43. frjim4321 says:

    The results seem fairly predictable considering the role of the Supreme Court in the recent “Citizens United” decision. Elections are now for sale to the highest bidder, e.g., Rupert Murdoch. The last decent president, Bill Clinton, had his best years with a republic congress, so there is still hope for the next six years.

  44. J Kusske says:

    I’d much rather not have the Senate in Republican hands just now, until all the dead wood of socially liberal types like Mike Castle (who would have won in Delaware) is knocked out of the party. That was what the main goal of this election was, and it went off very well in the primaries. The next general election will see more success in the general election to match that of the House this cycle. The party should listen to its base, not take it for granted, and the Democratic Party should take note too.

  45. jflare says:

    If you think President Clinton was decent, I’m a bit worried.
    Even ignoring the various shenanigans in the White House, don’t forget about the whole battle over FOCA more or less began with his election. Then too, he was determined to recast America in a progressive mold. As I recall, we wound up with DADT precisely because he, President Clinton, didn’t have the moral backbone to defend traditional morals. It’s because he “compromised” that the gay “rights” lobby has a lever to pull on now.

    President Clinton wasn’t as aggressive as President Obama, but rest assured, he had about the same intentions in mind. I’ll offer this for President Obama: He’s been pretty consistent with regard to attempting to fulfill campaign promises. I think most of those promises quite despicable, but he’s followed them more than many….

    We need a genuine, orthodox Catholic in the White House!

  46. Bryan Boyle says:

    I’m not a conspiracy theorist…but, what we see is just the side show for what’s really happening. In all cases…follow the $$$. It’s not the parties (they are pretty much two sides of the same coin, much the same as trying to really discern the difference between GM cars…different sheet metal stapled on a common chassis with common engines, brake systems, transmissions, etc), it’s where they get their funding from and the PR spinmeisters they have working for them.

    Neither of them, at their soul, stand for anything other than the party qua party. IOW, pander to the base, mouth soothing, non-committal words that ‘resonate’ with people of like alignment and wordsmithed to the ultimate degree, but, when the chips are down, only the insiders who are anointed by the party ruling juntas are the ones who are presented as our ‘choices’; when the sheeple rise up (see Angle, O’Donnell, etc…) and put THEIR people in place….well, we saw the horrified reaction of the parties to that, didn’t we?

    Will the shellacked side ‘get it?’ Will the newly-minted majority in the People’s House ‘get it?’ In both cases, I doubt it. It’s theater meant to amuse us and keep us from focusing on other activities that are happening behind the scenes with the acquiescence and encouragement of the people who actually set the agenda.

  47. sulldjjr says:

    While listening to Catholic Radio on XM yesterday, I heard the president of Catholic Charities of California express her unqualified relief that Barbara Boxer and Jerry Brown won their respective races. Granted, Fiorina and Whitman left much to be desired, from a Catholic perspective, but Boxer and Brown epitomize the culture of death on the one hand, and state usurpation of subsidiarity on the other. Catholics who allow their faith to become polluted by political ideology, left or right, seem ever-ready to rationalize public policies in direct contradiction of the teachings of the Church.

    As a resident of Montgomery County, Maryland, the elections left little to cheer. The county and state remain firmly in grip of secular, anti-life statists. Despite that, let’s continue the “brick-by-brick” method and build our faith, families, communities and Church.

  48. sulldjjr says:

    @ jflare – “We need a genuine, orthodox Catholic in the White House!”

    I completely disagree. Genuine, lasting cultural change emerges from the ground up, not the top down. If we, as Catholics, want to promote human flourishing, we should be agitating for genuine, orthodox Catholic bishops. A strong, vibrant, devout and united Church acts as a counter-weight to political institutions, an intermediary between the citizens and the state. It promotes the best characteristics of citizenship because it builds virtuous, selfless communities, an objective wholly-outside the purview of the value-free, relativistic liberal democratic state.

    If confronted by an either-or choice between an orthodox Catholic and some other candidate, I, too, would likely prefer the former, but we make a mistake, as Catholics, if we accept the premise that the levers of government can be used to solve society’s problems. The principle of subsidiarity, when properly oriented toward the common good, severely restricts the role of government to assistance of private associations and institutions, insofar as they need it at all.

  49. pfreddys says:

    Nice to see that there are actually pro-life Catholic members of congress. I thought all the pro-life members of congress were Baptists and Mormons:

    Real Catholic Speaker of the House: American Political Landscape Shifts
    By Deacon Keith Fournier 11/3/2010 Catholic Online (

    The new Speaker of the House will be John Boehner of Ohio. He is a faithful Catholic who fully understands the teaching of his Church and has earned a consistent 100% Pro-Life score from the National Right to Life Committee. Just as importantly, he has also earned a 0% score from the National Abortion Rights Action League, an organization which promotes the killing of children in the womb as a “right”.

  50. JMody says:

    Fr. Z, credo-catholic, you compel me to act:
    as an Arizonan, please accept my apologies for Secretary Janet From-Another-Planet.

    And how come no commenters here are urging the others to pray for them? What would be a suitable prayer for the conversion of Chuck Schumer? All that springs to mind is Leonine prayer to St. Michael …

Comments are closed.