Call it Sarah Palin’s revenge, said Andrew Malcolm in the Los Angeles Times online. The former Republican vice-presidential candidate campaigned for Sen. Saxby Chambliss ahead of a run-off vote on Tuesday, and helped him win reelection thanks to heavy conservative turnout. Now there’s no way for Democrats to win a filibuster-proof, 60-vote majority in the Senate.
Chambliss’ double-digit victory did more than dash Democrats’ dreams of a supermajority, said Jim Tharpe in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. It “buoyed a Republican Party battered by staggering losses in the Nov. 4 general election,” and shows what the GOP can still do when its volunteers show up in force to make calls and knock on doors to get conservative voters to the polls.
There’s still not much for the GOP to celebrate, said Rachel Kapochunas in Congressional Quarterly Politics. The Democrats still have 58 seats voting with them—59 if Al Franken wins the “cliffhanger race in Minnesota.” With those gains and the help of “some of the Senate’s more moderate Republicans,” Democrats should be able to break filibusters anyway, leaving Republicans without a key tactic to delay Democratic legislation.