It could have been a conservative, fiscally prudent congress that got ousted. Not that the Dems are going to be any better, but methinks we have traded spending for social issues. Let me essplain (as Ricky Ricardo used to say): I think that Bush and the Dems will come up with amnesty program and maybe some cutting around the edges at Global warming. Bush has already signaled that he will give a bit on these issues. Think about it--he’s been drifting for a while. The two issues that he will dig his heels in are will be the war on Terror and to (much lesser extent) Spending. Although our Pres has not shown any fiscal discipline yet, it is mostly because I don’t think he felt that he was going to get anything out of it. Opposing the Republicans is not his idea of a good time. I mean, good god, look how loyal he's been to people in the past that didn’t deserve it.
On the Terror issue, the Dems will pretty much be in "whatever" mode, even while foaming at the mouth for their constituents. The reason is simple: it's a losing issue for them. No matter what the reason is and how the Dems feel about how they won, they are still seen as weak on this issue, and will probably concede some ground. On the Spending, we have an interesting set up. If he plays it right, the Dems will say "hey, you let the Republicans spend, why not us" to which Bush will say "winds of change" and then burnish his credentials with the conservatives. Since they worship at the altar of Clinton, then they will know that the Republicans lost to Billy boy on just such a shutdown/stalemate. With the inevitable staring them in the face and a lot of Dems in the House and Senate who want to appear moderate to the electorate and thus be electable in 2008, they will seek compromise with the moderates both in and out of their party. Bingo! Reduced spending, tax cuts retained and the War on Terror vigorously fought by the Dems and Repubs alike. Granted, this is an ideal scenario and the Judge thing could get messy, but it's not all bad to have a split Government. It all depends on how the major players play it out. So don’t go jumping off any bridges. We have an advantage: conservatives when they lose power don’t feel like they lost everything that defines them, just a way to carry out their ideas. So it will be tough, but I have faith. Write it down, mark it on your calendars, but I think this is the worst that will happen in two years. I, like Reagan have faith in the ultimate wisdom of the American people to steer us along, we just might not like the bumps in the road along the way.