AN INSIDE LOOK - Commentary and opinions on local politics and life in general in Southeastern Massachusetts! Featuring the writings of Bill Gouveia, newspaper columnist for the Sun Chronicle and local cable TV talk show host. Feel free to read, comment and enjoy!
Thursday, November 13, 2014
Post-Election Analysis, Local and Otherwise
This column originally appeared in The Sun Chronicle on Monday, November 10, 2014
AN INSIDE LOOK
By Bill Gouveia
a political columnist, I feel compelled to give you my analysis of the recent
midterm elections.After careful study
and consideration, here is my detailed breakdown on the state and national
results:It was a good year to be a
the national level, it was clearly a great day for the GOP.They took control of the Senate with ease,
won the lion’s share of the governor races, and solidified their majority in
the House.They managed to define the
key issues and blame President Obama for almost everything, including
Ebola.It was a decisive and smart
course, winning control of the government is sort of like being a dog chasing a
car. Once you catch it, you have to
figure out what to do with it.
got virtually nothing done over the last two years.Each side blames the other, but in truth they
share the blame.Both Harry Reid and
John Boehner were obstructionists in their own chambers.Republicans will discover – as Democrats know
all too well – that having a majority in the Senate does not mean you suddenly
can do what you want.
Republicans worked hard for the right to put their policies and philosophies front
and center.Democrats have to acknowledge
that and accept the consequences of losing.That doesn’t mean they should just fold their tent and go home, and they
is easy.Leading is hard.If Republicans concentrate on exacting revenge
for what they perceive as past sins of Democrats, then nothing in government
will get better.We will continue the
gridlock and hatred that has consumed and occupied Washington for the last
decade or more.
right now, they should be allowed to enjoy their celebration.They earned this victory.It was clear, it was convincing, it was
widespread.This election might change
everything, or it might change nothing.That will be decided largely by the willingness of Republicans to be
leaders as well as winners.
the local front, there were few surprises in area communities.If you had any doubt this is a
Republican-leaning part of the state, you need only look at the local results
in the US Senate race.
Selectman Brian Herr actually carried five of the ten Sun Chronicle communities
over Ed Markey, despite having less name recognition than the players on the
Patriots taxi squad.But he did have an
R after his name.The race for Massachusetts
Attorney General was not competitive statewide, but GOP candidate John Miller
still gained a majority in half the Sun Chronicle towns.
Charlie Baker swept all ten communities, partly because his moderate-to-liberal
stances on many issues made him attractive to local Democrats.
surprise in the Attleboro state representative race was the margin of victory
for incumbent Democrat Paul Heroux.He
dominated Republican Bert Buckley, who had the backing of nearly all the local
representatives and city officials.It
was a solid vote of confidence for Heroux as he finishes his first term.Wrentham State Senator Richard Ross also
cruised to an easy victory.
biggest winner of the night may have been the Town of Plainville.The defeat of Question 3 guaranteed the slot machine
parlor run by Penn National will indeed open, keeping millions of dollars and
several thousand jobs in town.The
casino repeal was rejected by 80% of Plainville voters, and lost in every area
enough, that included Foxboro where over 60% of those casting ballots supported
keeping the gambling law.It was ironic
that they got to vote on a measure allowing a gambling establishment on Route
One, just down the road from where Robert Kraft had proposed a resort casino.
voting to allow legalized gambling statewide is different from allowing it in
your own town.But the wide margin does
make you wonder how Foxboro citizens would have chosen had their selectmen not
denied them the opportunity to even listen to a casino proposal, never mind
vote on one.
the area averaged over 50%.Let’s hope
some of those folks remember how to get to the polls come the next local
Bill Gouveia is a local columnist and
longtime local official.He can be
emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org and followed on Twitter at