Not every incumbent is endangered for renomination. However, those who face anger from the grassroots, coupled with a challenger candidate with the resources to get their message out, have challenges.
This post is not to bemoan the choice of BOTH parties’ primary electorate to choose confrontation over compromise. It’s simply analyzing the results from a different angle. It’s not just anti-incumbency coursing through the veins of the primary electorates, but it is supercharged by a distrust of the other side. Like unicorns and rainbows, bipartisanship is going to be rarely spotted over the next few years.
Bipartisanship has taken a beating over the last few years, especially from bloggers who seem to think that elected officals should only follow their own narrow agendas. One of the reasons that Bob Bennett was axed in Utah was for taking part in what I would call "mundane bipartisanship" in voting for liberal judicial nominees when Bill Clinton was president. Of course, when the president of one part is in power, they tend to have the perogative in nominating whoever they want to be a Supreme Court justice. Yes, the opposing side can oppose, but in the end their isn't much the other side can do in stopping the president, lest they find that the nominee is sacrificing chickens or something. A senator in an opposing party could get a way with voting for a nominee without being considered a traitor.
Call me an old romantic, but being in a democracy means working with people who you might not agree with. It means coming together and finding what will work for both parties.
But it seems that these days, we tend to see government as a winner-take-all game. If one side wins, it has to be seen as a total victory, where the losing side can only surrender.
Something tells me that the next five to ten years will not be an exciting time in governance, but a lot of fighting and bickering where nothing gets done.