What goes around comes around (or visa versa)
In terms of pure numbers, this election probably won't equal the magnitude of 1974 or 1994. But the numbers aren't the whole, or even the essential story from last night. The main story is that The Worst Congress Ever got sent home.
And for the remaining members of Congress, think hard before publishing that book. J.D. Hayworth and Crazy Curt Weldon both released books this year, demonstrating that as George Will once quipped, indecent exposure can be of the mind or spoken word as much as of the body.
But back to my first point, it's hard to overstate just how god-awful this Congress was, and for that matter, what this Congress has been for the past 12 years. The K-Street Project for one, the deposed and disgraced (and indicted) Congressman from Sugarland's primary contribution to American political hyper-partisanship power-mongering, greed and hubris. Not only did the voters punish that whorry-system's architects, but because of it, some of its main brainchilds and beneficiaries didn't even survive to stay on the ballot, as DeLay's replacement had to campaign by write-in (and lost) and Bob Ney's replacement, much like the former Senator from Pennsylvania, another K-Street godfather, had a can of whoop-ass opened on her.
And don't forget that other dubious invention of the 1995-2006 Congress--the mid-century, non-Census based, politically manipulated redistricting efforts, which for a time, gave Republicans some seats in Congress, but which now only survives as yet another symbol of political over-reach and heavy-handedness.
And how can we forget the midnight votes of this Vampire Congress (as Matt Taibbi labels it) and the holding open of votes sought by the leadership as fifteen minute voting alotments were extended for hours as arm-twisting bribing was conducted on the House floor.
But in gaining the whole world, as it were, Congresional Repubs lost their own souls (if they once brought them to Congress to begin with). They temporarily increased their membership in Congress and enacted legislation benefiting their corporate paymasters, but in the end, their "successes" were turned against them. The mechanizations they established to further their goals and aggregandize their position were dismantled.
And finally, ultimately, the war that was gained by smoke and mirrors, misinformation, cut and paste "intelligence" and without proper and objective Congressional oversight and that was used to demonize opponents and further divide Americans and win the Republican majority an election in 2002 collapsed as a deck of cards. And those responsible in one way or another for leading it finally paid a fatal, if delayed, penalty last night. And the "glorious" conservative revolution sought by the war's backers in the pulpit, radio booths, and corporate cable television "news" offices has been beached, washed up shore among the flotsam and jetsum comprised of the wrecked Christian Reconstructionist and corporate anti-worker and consumer agenda.