Georgia Senate Seat

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NEWS FLASH: Georgia is still a conservative state.

Saxby Chambliss’ runoff victory in a race that didn’t turn out to be close at all (the latest figures have him beating challenger Jim Martin by a lopsided 58-43%, with voter turnout around half of what it was in last month’s general election) has killed the Democrats’ hopes of having the 60 members they would need to stop a filibuster in a Senate.

But as anyone who has ever been majority leader can tell you, having 60 members has never been the same as having 60 votes. It is far easier to hold your party together as a bloc when they are a minority stopping legislation than when they are passing it. So Harry Reid will start the session as he always knew he would, having to build coalitions–or, at a minimum, having to woo a Republican or three to vote his way. Meanwhile, they are still counting votes in Minnesota.