It's been a pretty good night for anyone hoping for a change in American foreign policy. As I write (it's 7 a.m. here in Albuquerque, New Mexico), the Democrats have gained twenty-six seats in the House of Representatives and four in the Senate, leaving them two short of control there. Having said that, the two remaining states to declare, Montana and Virginia, show the Democratic candidates to be leading by thin, but not wafer thin, margins, and I'm expecting the fifty-first member of the Democratic Caucus in the Senate to be of critical importance.
The question is, which fifty-first? Joe Lieberman we know about, having won his race as an independent by ten percentage points. I'm more interested in the new junior Senator for Vermont, Bernie Sanders. An avowed socialist, he was the former Mayor of Burlington, the state's largest city - although that isn't saying much - who went on to be the state's sole member of the House of Representatives. He beat his Republican opponent (the Democrats didn't run against him) by nearly 2:1.
Here in New Mexico, the key race was in the 1st Congressional District, where the Democratic State Attorney General appears to have gone down narrowly to her Republican opponent. Pity, really, as she looked to be both competent and effective, and on a night which is undoubtedly the best the Democrats have had since the early nineties, she may not get a better chance for a while.
One thing that has been fun has been watching the results come in live on the Fox News Channel. Talk about schadenfreude... but I'll report further soon. This is your reporter in Albuquerque, NM, handing back to the studio!