Does Barack Obama Have a Mandate?
President Barack Obama was re-elected handily last night, carrying most of the swing states and likely the popular vote. After a first term marred by congressional obstruction, a historically high unemployment rate, and a nasty, hard-fought campaign against former Gov. Mitt Romney, Obama supporters say that the president can now claim a mandate to govern with liberal policies in his second term.
Republicans, however, deny any such mandate. Democrats gained more control of the Senate, but not enough to overcome a Republican filibuster. The GOP also retained control of House, leaving some to call 2012 a "status quo" election. In his victory speech, Obama expressed hope that country could move past Washington gridlock, saying, "Tonight you voted for action, not politics as usual." However, Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner Tuesday suggested that Congress would continue its opposition to Obama's agenda, calling the House a "primary line of defense."
Did Obama's win give him a mandate? Here is the Debate Club take: