You heard Brinkley. You saw Feagler. You read George Will. It is now time for me to weigh in with what will hopefully be the last article about the recent election.
Winner- The American people and our system of government. We had the largest voter turnout in twenty years. We are also witnessing a smooth transition of control of the world’s only remaining superpower. We take for granted something that could not happen in the vast majority of countries.
Loser- Negative, deceptive campaign advertisements. From muddy Margaret Meuller to Mike DeWine, the candidate who appeared to hit below the belt (or below the belt the most) lost. By election eve I was beginning to think that Congresswoman Mary Rose Oakar was going to accuse her challenger, Martin Hoke, of kidnapping the Lindbergh baby. And who can forget the Republican version of Arkansas?
Winner- The 13th Congressional District. People who know Sherrod Brown would be tempted to move to Elyria or Chardon just so that they could be represented by him in Washington. I attended an International Leadership Conference in Washington several years ago. Mr. Brown, then Ohio’s Secretary of State, was a featured speaker. His talk, and his obviously bright future as a public servant, were topics of discussion during the balance of the conference. It is great to see one of the “good guys” finish first.
Loser- George Voinovich. You campaigned heavily for George Bush, but Ohio made Bill Clinton the President-Elect. Your Lieutenant-Governor ran a campaign for the U.S. Senate that will be remembered long after his name is forgotten. And even with the newly Republican drawn districts, Ohio’s House, Senate and congressional delegation are substantially unchanged. Not a good election, George.
Winner- Dan Quayle. No, really. Actually, Dan won twice. Had he been re-elected there would have been no way he could have successfully run for the presidency in 1996. The American public would not allow either party to control the White House for five consecutive terms. This loss greatly increases his chances for victory in the future. Also, whether you agree with his stand on the issues or not (and I certainly don’t), you do know his beliefs and values. Dan Quayle is consistent and true to a certain set of positions and that gives him a real foundation.
Loser- Cleveland radio. Now that the election is over, we will again be inundated by commercials for “Hooked on Phonics”.
Winner- My son Phillip. Burke Lakefront Airport was the scene of Governor Clinton’s last campaign stop in Ohio. I took Phillip, Jennifer, and my new step-daughter Andrea to not only hear the candidates, but to also work as volunteers. I had a great time, but my experience paled beside Phil’s. He not only shook the eventual winner’s hand, he also shook hands with the future First Lady and exchanged pleasantries. Energized, Phillip volunteered to work the balance of the campaign. He learned more about the election process in two days than in all his previous schooling
By the way, Andrea was disappointed that Phil and I had the opportunity to shake hands with the future President and she hadn’t. I told her that it wasn’t that big a deal. After all, more people shook hands with Bill Clinton than had seen Madonna naked.
I lied. It was a big deal.