August 13th, 2010
02:36 PM ET

If an election falls in the woods

Tom Foreman | BIO
AC360° Correspondent

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/07/27/gal.capitolbldg.file20.gi.jpg caption="In terms of grand trends or prognostications, the votes this week actually meant pretty much nothing." width=300 height=169]

America voted this past week, or at least some Americans did, and if you read any of the nonsense that passed for political analysis in the wake of that, now would be a good time to flush that right out of your system. Like a plate of bad oysters, or any lingering memories of The Tyra Banks Show. Because in terms of grand trends or prognostications, the votes this week actually meant pretty much nothing.

Yes, I’ve said it, and I’m glad I tell you! Glad! (Insert maniacal laughter here. Go ahead. The other people on the subway will give you more room.)

For heaven’s sake, we’re talking about primaries in a fistful of far flung states. Such contests never, I repeat never, get the kind of turnout associated with general elections and have proven at best sketchy guides to how the later voting will go. And yet the bone throwers in DC are trying to exact from this handful of checkmarks 1) How strong the brew is in the Tea Party’s pot, 2) How much trouble incumbents may face, and 3) Whether Levi and Bristol can somehow patch it up and become the happy, young couple Wassila needs in this difficult time.

Part of the problem is that it is summer. There is just nothing else for the Punditeers (like Mouseketeers, only without all the smiling and singing) to do in D.C. Oh sure, there is a reheated debate about immigration reform, but that’s going nowhere. Military cutbacks? Yawn. Even Charlie Rangel’s “crazy from the the heat” rant on the House floor about how they’ll have to drag him out before he’ll quit had trouble rousing the rabble.

But even in the worst of times, the DC crowd loves nothing so much as picking apart polls and polling to predict who might be a winner in the next round of voting. Even if there is really very little at which to pick.

To be fair, one could make the long shot observation that the voting this week suggested a general trend against political insiders; that voters are somewhat more inclined to hold political experience against a candidate than to count it for him or her. But that’s hardly a revelation.

So kick back. Open up another cold one. Smoke ‘em if you’ve got ‘em. Democrat, Republican, or Independent, the voting this week came and went like a tree falling in the woods, and we won’t hear the crash, at least until summer is gone.

Filed under: Raw Politics • Tom Foreman
soundoff (3 Responses)
  1. Roland Fisher

    Must be tougher on polititions. They do not do their jobs.They are all for themselves and their parties

    August 14, 2010 at 9:19 am |
  2. J.V.Hodgson

    The only meaning they have is who became the candidate for the real election in November. Now the people in those states where that is decided can sit back and listen hopefully to the actual candidates they must decide between and the policies and maybe central RNC DNC policies and actions then vote. only at that time will we really know for example if the tea partiers are a force or not.
    But some pundits and pollsters will try to read the tealeaves(ha ha) or the direction the log is pointing when it fell!!

    August 14, 2010 at 2:46 am |
  3. Annie Kate

    Elections this early are pretty much meaningless and I don't know about anyone else but I'm still sick of politics from the 2008 campaigns. I suppose the Congressional members who are up for re-election are concerned about the security of their job right now; but I wouldn't base anything much but a sharpened awareness on the elections so far – too little participation and very few elections. All quite a yawner so far – thankfully. Besides Congress has to see about these terrorist babies right now – wouldn't Eugene McCarthy just love it...and I don't mean that in a good way.

    August 13, 2010 at 8:46 pm |

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