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What We Are

By Jeff Hughes

Editor’s Note: Hopefully, this is the first in a series of essays by readers/friends/anyone who has something to say about the election.

New York City. Los Angeles. Detroit. Boston. Seattle. St. Louis. San Francisco. Washington D.C. Miami. Cleveland. Cincinnati.

Not a single one of these cities voted for George W. Bush. Not a single one was even close. And yet we’re about to allow W to sit on his Throne of Good in the White House for the next four years. The Republicans have the Congress. The Republicans have the White House. The Republicans are about to dominate the Supreme Court. You might want to check those balances – there may be a little more weight on one side.

Rural America has their president. A devout Christian cowboy who speaks in their black-and-white language and believes it is America’s duty to dominate. It didn’t matter that the economy is a disaster. It didn’t matter that he not only waged a false war but failed in almost every way to achieve any of the set goals. It didn’t matter that Ohio lost a quarter of million jobs…at least not to the people of Ohio.

He won. No, I take that back. He didn’t just win. He won a majority of the vote (over 50%) for the first time since 1988. He beat John Kerry in the popular vote by almost four million votes. And I know the turnout was overwhelming, but George W. Bush received more votes in this election than any president in the history of this country. Please go back and read this paragraph.

This is what we are. This is who we are. And I’m trying everything in my power not to plunge into complacency. We don’t have the “but he DIDN’T win� excuse anymore. That’s out the window. This won makes 2000 a memory, the way the Red Sox 3-0 comeback makes Aaron Boone just another in a line of Yankees third basemen. Michael Moore’s “fictitious president� just suddenly took a leap across the Barnes & Noble aisle into New Non-Fiction. George W. Bush is not only the president. He’s popular.

I’m not going to play the blame game right now. There’s plenty to go around. For now, I’m going to sit around and worry about the draft and being despised in every country I visit. (I wonder how many of those rural voters consider an issue like that.) John Kerry didn’t run as John Kerry. He ran as not-George W. Bush.

Guess what, John? The people seem to like George W. Bush a whole lot more than we all thought.

Jeff Hughes is not happy right now . . . at least the Bears beat the 49ers.

November 3, 2004