Yes, He Has A Mandate

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That’s the overwhelming conclusion from the polling out there. Just look at the RCP graph above. The Bloomberg poll is also stunning in its view of how most Americans understood the election to be exactly a choice between one approach – Bush/Cheney/Romney – and another – Obama/Clinton – and chose the latter decisively. Money quote:

Sixty-five percent of Americans say the Nov. 6 results gave Obama a “mandate” on his proposal to raise tax rates on income over $250,000 and “to get it done.” Forty-five percent of Republicans agree.

My italics. The longer the Congressional Republicans remain in denial about this, the more isolated they will become. These quotes from voters leapt out at me:

The election “was basically a referendum that wealthy people could and would pay more,” said poll respondent Jim Johnson, 66, of Littleton, Colorado, a retired telecommunications executive and a Republican who voted for Mitt Romney. “It was perfectly clear. That was Obama’s stance throughout the election.” Poll respondent Gerald Watts, 75, of Lake Quivira, Kansas, a retired engineer and another Republican who voted for Romney, read the election results the same way. “Every time we listened to him on TV, he’d start talking about raising taxes on the rich — every news conference, every time he went up in front of a group,” said Watts. “He didn’t want to talk about anything else.”

These two men are smack in the middle of the GOP’s current demographics. And, unlike the foam-flecked mouth-pieces on Fox, they are admirably civic in their understanding of politics. Listen to them, Mr Speaker. And lead.