As any impartial observer can see, this election is a toss-up, and that means it will depend upon turnout. And since Democrats hold all sorts of advantages when it comes to turnout, I think that Bush may, indeed, lose. For a moment, I am going to assume that this happens, and take a look back at what went wrong.
But first, I will say this. If John Kerry does win, it is going to be a Pyrrhic victory, indeed. The Liberal block in this country has played every imaginable trump card in their hand, and it's still 50/50. The American Left has sold their soul to win this election, and they have based their entire campaign around trying to paint John Kerry as something that he isn't. They segregated all the loony protestors into cages at their national convention so that they couldn't detract attention from their attempts to make Howard Dean look reasonable and sane. They have sided with the scum of the Earth on all four corners of the globe, from Michael Moore to Saddam Hussein, to Jacques Chirac. In the long run, it's going to cost them. The Democrats have proven in the past year and a half that they have nothing to offer, nothing positive, no platform, no ideas. Nothing, except for the fact that John Kerry is not George W. Bush (oh yeah, and he served in Vietnam). The party was hijacked by Lithium-challenged extremists two years ago when it incorrectly diagnosed its problems as being not Liberal enough instead of too far Left. Since then, the Democrats have progressively melted down to the point of embarrassment. It has become so bad that they have brought Jimmy "malaise" Carter back onto the scene.
Case in point -- I have been visiting www.electoral-vote.com on a daily basis lately, and when I scroll down the page I see something rather interesting. On this election eve, the site has the Senate race at 52 Republicans, 45 Democrats, 2 tossups, and 1 Independent. If I am reading it right, the 2 tossups are South Dakota and Alaska, whose polls show a 1:1 split right now. That would mean that the next session of Congress may have only 46 Democratic Senators. John Kerry has shown that he cannot energize his base, and if he wins, I expect that number to be under 45 by 2008. The House? I haven't seen any projections, but I am optomistic. Congress is elected via name recognition and ideology, and right now, the Democrats are getting their asses kicked on ideology. Why? Because they have trashed every last little bit of it to get Bush out of office.
The one advantage of a Kerry win will be that he can truly no longer hide from his record. If Kerry gets elected, the intellectual and moral bankruptcy of the American Left is going to be on a gigantic stage for the entire world to see. The country is going to see on a daily basis what a Left Wing arrogant, elitist prick this guy is.
The big loser, however, is going to be the Liberal media. The media has never campaigned so hard for one candidate in our lifetimes, and it's going to cost them too. To some degree, it already has. The credibilty of 60 Minutes has been destroyed, The New York Times has been exposed, and CNN has now officially become Fox News's bitch. The media has most definitely been a huge factor in this election, but I don't expect it to be again. Trust in the media is at an all time low, and from the survey numbers I am reading, the belief that the media is Liberal-biased is at an all-time high. If Kerry wins, there will be celebrations in news rooms across the country, but those celebrations will be short-lived if sponsors start pulling their ads because of crappy ratings. Sooner or later, Capitalism is going to intervene and force one or more of these networks to change sides. Until then, Fox News has 50% of the electoral to themselves.
Now, back to "why George W. Bush lost the election", or if he does manage to win, "Why George W. Bush almost lost the election". I don't think that it comes down to Iraq. I think that it comes down to something else. His economic policy sucks, plain and simple. George W. has set the Republicans back 30 years by destroying the party's credibility as the party of lesser government. Prescription drug welfare, tariffs on steel (later repealed at least), and a massive expansion in government post-911. Now tell me, how do you sell to a swing voter that the opponent is a big government Massachusetts Liberal, when your own candidate is a big government Conservative? It's easy. The answer is, you don't.
Bush's biggest blunder of all may have been signing that wretched McCain-Feingold campaign finance reform act, an act which has proven to be his undoing. Would anyone doubt that the act has overwhelmingly favored Kerry in this election? He signed the bill, despite opposing these reforms in the 2000 election, despite the wishes of his constituents, and despite the voices of his party's leadership. One thing about George W Bush is clear: like his father, he does not truly and deeply believe in the merits of economic conservatism and liberty. Perhaps we, as his constituents, share some of the blame for being so forgiving of his mistakes. We Republicans have been compromising Woodrow Wilson after World War I. "I'll give you anything you want, just give me a League of Nations!"
If W. loses, I do not expect, and I certainly hope we do not see an eruption of lunacy and hysteria from Conservatives in this country like what we have seen from Democrats in the past few years. Let us not embarrass ourselves by degenerating into a mob of foaming-at-the-mouth, twitching, salive-spewing, purple-faced, angry losers like the mouth-breathers at Democratunderground.org, moveon.org, a Howard Dean rally, and the rest of the Angry Left. The media certainly is an advantage for Kerry, but ultimately, they are not to blame. After all, Ronald Reagan won two landslide elections, without Fox News or Rush Limbaugh. Let's analyze what went wrong, and do it differently next time. Let us recognize that Republicans who are economically Liberal tend to lose.