The 2004 election is over. As pundits reflect, candidates relax and a weary electorate wonders who will leave the island on "Survivor", it is a good moment to consider what the results mean.
We are a polyglot nation, not a deeply divided citizenry. As a people we do not like to be shoved into neat little categories and voting blocks.
We voted for security and intuitive values, while remaining distressed over Iraq and our economic future.
We upheld the sacredness of marriage but (I think ignorantly) funded embryonic stem cell mythology.
We stuck out out tongues at the media elite of two coasts while going to their movies and downloading their music in large numbers.
In the end, it came down to a gut-check and most Americans went with what they thought was a safer choice.
President Bush does not have a mandate to push a rightist social agenda or expand international militarism. He DOES have the nation's blessing to bring Iraq to reasonable stability, pursue terrorists abroad and help stabilize our economy and social programs without increasing government intrusion or largesse.
On a lighter note, Middle America did not want a loose cannon like Teresa Heinz-Kerry in the White House.