A Note of Sympathy for the Republicans

Suporters of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney react to results on election night November 6, 2012 in Boston Massachusetts.  US President Barack Obama was re-elected Tuesday, November 6, 2012, television networks projected -- only the second time in several decades that a Democrat has won a second term in the White House.AFP PHOTO/EMMANUEL DUNAND        (Photo credit should read EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/Getty Images)

The furious attempts by conservatives to cast doubt upon the polls were obviously, to me, a defense mechanism. But it was a very understandable one. Losing a presidential campaign just stinks. It is a double form of pain. First there is the pain of anticipating changes you despise. And then there is the pain of watching the country you love making a decision you find inexplicable. You feel like a stranger at home.

I have argued that the Republican Party will have to change to have a future. But it will change, the sun will rise, a new day will dawn. I believe that most of the right's fears of what it would mean to reelect Obama — hyperinflation, mass deficits, endless economic stagnation, and an end to American leadership throughout the world — will not come to pass. I will even venture that, one day, Republicans will look back fondly on Obama, the way they do with Bill Clinton.

I am thrilled Obama won. But all of us Obama supporters should feel some kinship with the suffering of Republicans tonight. It has been our suffering before and will be again.