Some pundits would like you to believe that the results of the 2010 elections deliver a statement about President Barack Obama and the Democrats in Congress.
In Michigan, there are those who say the election results are a repudiation of Gov. Jennifer Granholm.
Plain and simple, Tuesday’s election results are a loud message from average citizens about the lousy shape of the economy in Michigan and across America.
In poll after poll, Americans have said clearly that the most important issue right now isn’t health care or immigration or the Asian carp.
It’s the economy. It almost always is.
Four years ago, the Democrats established majorities in both houses of Congress. Two years ago, they took over the White House and the economy was already lagging, banks were failing, much of the auto industry was stumbling and foreclosures and layoffs were on the rise.
The party in power typically takes the blame for the state of things, but especially the economy. That’s partly why the pendulum swung strongly toward the Democrats in 2006 and 2008.
Now, two years later, people aren’t seeing the improvement in jobs, housing and business that they’d hoped for, either from Lansing or Washington. So the pendulum has swung back to the Republicans.
We hope they’re successful in helping to turn things around and get us moving. Of course, we always hope whoever is in power is successful in creating jobs, providing a good environment for business, improving education and pursuing just and humane social policies of all sorts.
The truth, however, is that lately there hasn’t been much success getting progress on those challenges, no matter who has been in charge. Partisanship comes before people these days, it seems.
Will our newly elected leaders be more successful than their predecessors? We don’t know the answer to that question.
But we do know this: If they aren’t successful — as measured primarily by economic progress — America and Michigan won’t hesitate to swing the pendulum back the other way.
Good luck to all our newly elected officials of all parties in addressing our No. 1 issue. You know what that is, right?
— KALAMAZOO GAZET