The Democratic senate candidate in Massachusetts just conceded. A Republican will now be taking over the seat held by Ted Kennedy for almost half a century.

I’ll leave it to the MA political bloggers to work through the details of this big political fail on the part of the Democrats in their state.

But still have to ask the question: So what?

So what if we now have 59 votes in the Senate instead of 60. Important, nation-changing legislation has passed through Congress with far fewer votes.

There is no better example than Civil Rights legislation – an issue that Democrats failed to stop despite their record-breaking filibustering endurance.

Yes, there was a time when Democrats were evil racist fuckers.

Strom Thurmond, back when he was a Democrat, “supported racial segregation with the longest filibuster ever conducted by a single Senator, speaking for 24 hours and 18 minutes”. And in 1964 Robert Byrd gave a 14 hour and 13 minute address as part of a 75 hour filibuster over similar legislation.

In the end, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 passed. Just like health care reform will pass in the near future.

Not because one side tried harder than the other. But because it was the right thing to do.

Fifty years ago the Dixiecrats were on the wrong side of history just like the Republicans and some Dems are now.

And fifty years from now we’ll all look back, healthy and safe from potential financial disaster caused by health problems, and wonder what all the fuss was about.

 

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