Best and worst outcomes from the 2012 election
Voters across the political spectrum could find something to celebrate or decry, especially those of us here at The Times' Opinion Manufacturing Division, where we follow elections with a fervor that verges on the unhealthy. --Dan Turner
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Best: The fall of Allen West( J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press )
Democrats had plenty to celebrate with the defeats of Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock, but culture warriors on the left took special pleasure in the downfall of Florida Rep. Allen West, among the most notorious "tea party" blowhards in Congress.
West, whose emotional range veers from anger to fury, takes special delight in insulting and demeaning his opponents, whether it's ranting that people with Obama bumper stickers are "a threat to the gene pool," claiming Muslims are inherently violent or proclaiming that nearly half the Democrats in the House are communists. That might delight his deeply conservative Florida backers, but it's precisely the kind of behavior that has ratcheted up partisan rancor in Congress and contributed to an atmosphere in which the two parties find it nearly impossible to work together.
West should be a shock jock, not a statesman; happily, he now has the opportunity to make that job switch.
Above: West speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington on Feb. 10.