Patrick Richardson

Managing Editor

I was reluctant at first to write another piece dissecting the recent election. But then I figured everyone else is doing it so why not?

It was a fascinating night, the Republicans picked up 61 seats in the House of Representatives — a huge number not seen in decades — like about six of them. The last time there was a shift of this magnitude in the House was 1946.

The Senate, of course, did not change hands, and that to some degree is a blessing to Republicans in the House who can send legislation up, but when it does not pass the Senate can point to Democratic opposition.

It will prevent the Dems from blaming the Republicans if nothing gets done as Republicans can point to the Dem majority in the Senate and the Dem president.

One thing does concern me, however. I keep hearing Republicans talking about a “mandate.”

I hate to tell them this, but they don’t actually have a mandate.

With a few exceptions, and those were mostly Tea Party candidates like Rand Paul, the American people did not vote for Republicans, but rather against Democrats.

This election, as has so often been pointed out, was a referendum on the first two years of the Obama presidency. In no uncertain terms the American people told the president they were not happy.

This does not exactly translate into a mandate for the Republicans. This is more of a conditional approval.

The American electorate is as angry as I have ever seen them. The only mandate they have really given is “fix this and do it NOW!”

If there is no turn around in the next two years, at least a glimmer of things getting better. If large portions of the insanity that is Obamacare are not repealed, if taxes go up rather than down or at least remaining as they are now, the angry giant will likely slap the Republicans out of office just as hard and fast as it did the Democrats.

The American people are aware, I think, that without the presidency much can be stopped. And it is likely Obama will veto most of what is passed by the Republicans.

In which case he will find himself tossed out of office in 2012 and sitting outside the White House confused as to how he got there.

Which is, I guess, part of the problem. After the humiliation of Nov. 2, Obama went on TV to say the problem wasn’t his policies, but rather that he didn’t explain them well enough.

In other words, it wasn’t that he had stupid ideas, but rather that we were too stupid to understand them — proving he still doesn’t get it.

Mr. President, the American people have looked into the future socialist order you propose, and we didn’t like it. We told you to change direction through town hall meetings, and protests and polls.

You didn’t listen.

Now we’ve told you via an historic election.

Listen up, or we’ll tell you again.

All IMHO, of course.

(Patrick Richardson is the managing editor of the Columbus Advocate and the Baxter Springs News. He can be emailed at