American Horror Story: 2014 Mid-terms.

So the American mid-terms happened on Tuesday, and in a result that surprised no-one, the Republicans took control of the Senate.

Now, when I say that the result wasn’t surprising, that doesn’t mean I approve of it in the slightest. Honestly? After two years of political and legislative gridlock worse than the US has ever seen, all down to Republican congressman who have since admitted that they have, literally since Obama’s 2008 inauguration, done everything they can to make sure that none of his legislation passes, regardless of public support, I’d hoped that the result would be different.

I suppose that was a naive hope, but the Republicans’ blatant and obvious misogyny, racism, homophobia and general nastiness surely should have been enough to persuade voters the other way, shouldn’t it? This is a party whose members and supporters have said, in the past, that women who protest sexual harassment want to be sexually harassed, that in cases of “legitimate rape,” a woman’s body has a way of “shutting that whole thing down,” and that “Obama is the most racist president America has ever had” – this last comment in spite of the fact that a significant proportion of American presidents have actually been slave-owners.

It seems surreal to me that a party which has consistently expressed views as absurd and offensive as this has actually become the most powerful party in the USA, especially since America has always tried to portray itself as a beacon of freedom and equality. Given all this, I literally cannot comprehend the popularity of the Grand Old Party, and I begin to feel desperately sorry for President Obama, who, having already had to fight tooth-and-nail against Congress for the past two years of his presidency, is now going to be completely ineffective. A lot of people like to talk about Obama as someone who hasn’t kept their promises, but how can he have hoped to, after inheriting the worst economy since the Great Depression, and with Republicans fighting him every step of the way?

If this mid-term was a referendum on the president, the negative feeling towards Obama has won a decisive victory, but I can’t help but view him as a victim. After all, he’s been fighting a losing battle since his 2008 win, and, at this point, I honestly wouldn’t blame him if he was looking forward to the end of his second term in 2016.

– Lana Wrigley, A2 Politics

The First Female Almost-President of the United States

Bill Clinton once labelled himself ‘the first black President’; if this kind of logic was applied last month Hillary Clinton would be ending her career in politics as the first female President of the United States. No, I am not oblivious to the outcome of the 2008 Democratic primaries. Unfortunately for Hillary Clinton, the nearest thing to a number one spot is her second place position on the Forbes list of One Hundred Most Powerful Women. The worst part is not the fact that the woman who has shaped American policy for the last four years is not President, it’s that the number one on that list is Angela Merkel.

Hillary Clinton has perhaps had the most fascinating and influential career in politics of any woman of the last fifty years. Her mark dates right back to the 1960s at Wesley College where she organised student strikes following the assassination of Martin Luther King and worked with black students to recruit more African-American faulty members and students. It could be argued that here, Hillary Clinton really moulded her political beliefs as a Democrat, despite the fact she has persistently argued that the Republican Party had left her behind rather than vice versa. The Republican Party lost many members in this time of re-alignment but none as valuable as Hillary Clinton.

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