On November 4, 2004, after winning re-election, George W. Bush described the impact of his win on his future plans
"And it's one of the wonderful -- it's like earning capital. You asked, do I feel free. Let me put it to you this way: I earned capital in the campaign, political capital, and now I intend to spend it. It is my style. That's what happened in the -- after the 2000 election, I earned some capital. I've earned capital in this election -- and I'm going to spend it.."For an interesting comparison, let's look at this more closely beyond the fleur d'orange..
Candidate: Bush Kerry
Electoral vote: 286 251
States carried: 31 19 + DC
Popular vote: 62,040,610 59,028,444
Percentage: 50.7% 48.3%
In 2012 (assuming Florida):
Candidate Obama Romney
Electoral vote 332 206
States carried 26+DC 24
Popular vote: 59,693,706 57,069,517
Popular vote*: 50% 48%
(italics for results still in play)
Now of course there is a lot of chatter in the punditry about this being a "close" victory and "not a mandate"and such. They've made a big deal about how never before has a reelection been closer than the original election. Of course when you get elected by 271 EC votes with a loss of the popular vote, there is nowhere to go but up. This is just more slicing and dicing of the data to make a more palatable sh#t sandwich for the right.
But, as quoted above, the "great" GWB decrees this win political capital. Our favorite pundit Dick Cheney sees this kind of win as a "mandate".
So let's get shopping!