Monthly Archives: November 2008

A mighty swell

“Well, Andy, he did it.”

“What’s that, old boy?”

“He ran them off their feet.”

– Chariots of Fire (1981)

He did indeed do it, carrying not only the presidency but also the Senate and the House for the Democratic Party. He did it with a generational push redolent of the mythology around JFK — of 18 to 29 year-olds, a full 66% voted for him — and with an almost equally strong push from women, 56% of whom supported him. He did it with a wave of new voters adding onto what became the largest voter turnout (by percentage) since 1908. In the midst of two wars, in the midst of a financial crisis worse than anything since the Great Depression, and — catalyzed by these events, certainly, but also catalyzed in no small part by the man himself — in the midst of a mighty swell of “this really matters now” civic-mindedness, he did it. He ran them off their feet.

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