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50-50 Nation

As the last few results come in from the United States mid-term elections, there are plenty of people who are poring over the entrails to divine what changes these results may portend.

The expected gains for the Democrats in the House of Representatives leave the Speakership in the hands of Rep. Nancy Pelosi- a rather polarising figure, to say the least. Meanwhile, as I write, control of the Senate rests in the hands of Montana and Virginia, and by margins that are extremely tight. The Republicans need only hold on to one in order for their control over the Upper House of Congress to be preserved.

The extraordinarily small margin- less than twenty thousand votes for the two states, after nearly 80 million votes have been cast, should give some of the more enthusiastic Democrat boosters some pause for thought.

Despite the litany of corruption, pork barrel politics, the disaster of Iraq, the incompetence of the Republican administration, it is hard to hide the fact that US politics remains intensely polarised and bitterly divided. Listening to the meaningless exhortations from victorious Democratic candidates, it is hard to feel enthusiastic about America's leftists- whose brand of sanctimoniousness surpasses even Blair's barf-making levels of cant.

Personally, I shall look forward to listening to P.J. O'Rourke's, doubtless scabrous, commentary. The American political class is, I think rightly, held in considerable contempt by the good people of that great nation.

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