November 2nd, 2010
11:39 PM ET
12 years ago

Avlon: A victory for checks and balances

Editor's note: The hotly contested campaign for the midterm elections is over. As the results come in, CNN's political contributors share their quick thoughts on what's making news.

So far, the election isn't quite the far-right stampede it was supposed to be. Sen. Michael Bennet in Colorado and Rep. Joe Sestak in Pennsylvania were putting on strong showings in their Senate races; Independent gubernatorial candidates Lincoln Chafee in Rhode Island and Eliot Cutler in Maine were also hanging tough.

This election is not - and was never - an outright endorsement of the GOP. It is about independents swinging against unified Democratic control of Washington.

There's also a lot of evidence of ticket splitting this year; look at the GOP's Tom Corbett sailing into the governorship in Pennsylvania, but Pat Toomey trailing his total. In Oregon, Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden was returned to office, but GOP candidate (and former NBA star) Chris Dudley was also elected. This is happening across the country: Voters want the checks and balances but aren't willing to straight-ticket vote if one of the candidates is on the extremes. This is about trying to re-balance government, not empower a new ideological movement.

It's a victory for the founding fathers' vision of checks and balances.

John P. Avlon is a CNN contributor, senior political columnist for The Daily Beast, and author of "Wingnuts: How the Lunatic Fringe Is Hijacking America."

Read more Election Night Quick Shots

Filed under: 2010 Election Analysis
soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. John

    It's a victory for ignorance and backwards ideology that nearly plummeted the country's economy into the toilet in 2008. It's hardly checks and balances when you sit and cry NO to everything and hope that the American people are foolish enough into voting for you. Apparently, they are.

    November 2, 2010 11:46 pm at 11:46 pm |
  2. yea right!!!

    Seriously do people actually think anything is gonna get done with what happened with this election. Repubs are the worst hypocrits saying "no" "no" "no" to the american people and now their about the american people.....hahahahaha. Yea and you are going to give us bipartisianship now!!!! how come you didn't give that before....or for the last 12 years!! You wanted the president to fail and say now you will work with him, well repubs i have news for you that ain't gonna happen and i think that after this election that boener said the people elected them...well what about the people that elected everyone two years ago...people are so forgetfull these repubs will drag us down again. I think that the country will be hurt and i don't think either side is going to go easy into the night on this one. This country is now ffffed

    November 2, 2010 11:52 pm at 11:52 pm |
  3. Pastor Ermon Trotter

    Beloveth..., Are we as Americans brain dead????? Did we forget 8 years 8 years of Replublican-nomics or the Bush Goverment. Even thought there is a lot of things I don't agree with in government. But like the bible says the truth shall set us free. It is not the Democrats that has put us behind the 8 ball it started Replublican first!

    November 3, 2010 12:07 am at 12:07 am |
  4. faithharding

    Happy Election Day, everyone (in the US). Please go vote if you haven't already! Oregon voters, this means you – turn in those ballots!

    November 3, 2010 07:54 am at 7:54 am |