Walter Russell Mead | Unions Lose Big in Michigan

The overall story, however, was of a major defeat for the unions, who staked their time, money and reputations on all of these battles and only pulled off a narrow victory in one. Michigan has historically been a union-friendly state. If unions are losing battles here, they should be seriously worried about much of the rest of the country.

The vote is also a sign that despite President Obama’s victories there, and the defeat of a number of GOP Senate hopefuls, the Middle West is fertile territory for common sense government ideas, coherently presented and carefully shaped. Michigan voters didn’t, as some despairing GOPers mourn, ‘turn their backs on American principles,’ embrace socialism or any other such nonsense. From Minnesota to Ohio voters are hungry for practical solutions to the problems created by the erosion of the blue social model; the party that develops real and sustainable solutions can win their trust and support.

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