The Age of 'Liberal Lions' Is Done
I am sorry to see Russ Feingold lose his bid to return to the US Senate. I saw him twice in the last two years, two consecutive Septembers I believe, and remain very impressed by his fighting heart and his lifelong commitment to the public good.
In the new age that is dawning, though, new leaders are emerging to captain the progressive cause. We should not hold our breath for a replicated Ted Kennedy* to appear and, white knight-like, deliver our afflicted souls from the dungeons of Orange Bolg.** A Slate writer recently noticed that the number of women of color in the Senate is about to quadruple. We may never get to see Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill, but I am heartened to know that any attempts to reinstate anti-gay discrimination in the military or ban abortion will have to get past these women first. (There are going to be at least 48 Democratic senators in total in the coming Congress -- 49 if Louisiana chooses to elect a Democrat in the imminent final-round contest there.)
*I confess to having never understood the cult of Ted Kennedy. He was an egotistical grandstander who accomplished very little in his years as Senator; arguably, he destroyed the Carter Presidency by the schism he instigated in the Democratic Party in 1980.
**Bolg: the Balrog who dwelt deep in the Mines of Moria and slew Gandalf, at least temporarily.