The NYT's Katharine Q. Seelye begins her coverage of yesterday's elections.
Taken together, Tuesday’s results could breathe new life into President Obama’s hopes for his re-election a year from now. But the day was not a wholesale victory for Democrats. Even as voters in Ohio delivered a blow to Gov. John R. Kasich, a Republican, and rejected his attempt to weaken collective bargaining for public employees, they approved a symbolic measure to exempt Ohio residents from the individual mandate required in Mr. Obama’s health care law.But Obama has never advocated collective bargaining rights for federal workers. His name is all over the health care law. So it's hard to see much good news here.
And while voters in Mississippi, one of the most conservative states, turned away a measure that would have outlawed all abortions and many forms of contraception and had drawn conservative support from members of both parties, they tightened their voting laws to require some from of government-approved identification....Actually, it would have been great news for Democrats if Mississippi voters had gone for the extreme anti-abortion law. Democrats would have used that result to scare, motivate, and manipulate voters. It's their very favorite wedge issue. There's much less potential for leveraging the voter ID issue. Seelye reminds us that Democrats portray voter-ID laws as "a thinly disguised attempt to intimidate voters of color," but I suspect that most voters find that sort of race-mongering unpleasant.
(I had to make a "2011 elections" tag for this post, which is another way of saying I having been paying much attention to the off-year elections. Sorry. These are very interesting issues, and I've been following the Wisconsin iterations of the collective bargaining and voter ID issues.)