Election Day 2012 provides the perfect opportunity to talk about winners and losers for the week in politics. Obviously, the people who won office were winners while those who did not were not. However, even beyond that, there were winners in this election which may not be so obvious.
The first and most obvious winner in the election was President Obama, who won a second term in the Oval Office. Without any question, he won both the popular vote and the Electoral College. However, he did receive just barely over half the popular votes, meaning that although he won the election, the president should not believe that he has a mandate from the masses.
Conversely, Mitt Romney was the most visible of the political losers of the week, coming up short in his quest to unseat the President.
In Massachusetts, Democrat Elizabeth Warren was expected to easily unseat Tea Party favorite Scott Brown. As the final days before the election wore on, Brown did his best to present himself as a moderate, willing to work with the Left on some issues. When all the votes were tallied, Warren took the seat 54-46% in a state where only 11% of voters are registered Republicans. Due to the fact that Warren won the race but Brown did better than expected, I have to name both of the contestants as joint winners in that race.
One of the lesser-known stories of the election happened in New Hampshire, which selected both of its house members and its governor on Tuesday. New Hampshire became the first state in the Union to be lead by an entirely female Congressional delegation and governor. The role of women in politics took another step forward when the three joined Senators Jeanne Shaheen and Kelly Ayotte on the team leading the Granite State. However they perform on duty, women as a whole were political winners for the week in the New England state of 1.25 million people.
Supporters of ending the prohibition on marijuana were big winners on Tuesday, as the voters in Colorado and Washington state voted to legalize the drug for recreational purposes. A similar measure was defeated in Oregon. Time will tell if the two states that did vote for legalization will benefit from increased tourism and snack food sales.
David Petraeus unexpectedly resigned his post as CIA director on November 9th over an extra-marital affair. That puts him in the loser category for the week to be sure.
Although it did not raise or lower his political stock this week, Herman Cain came out calling for a new, strong third party to join the current two-party system. After all the months of ads, discussions, Facebook messages and more that we just went through leading up to this last election, we all really need a break. Give it a rest, Herman. Talk to us in March. We might be ready to start discussing 2016 by then.