It has been quite the year with a new term for President Barack Obama and the same old outcome in Senate and House.
There has been lots of political drama which is why we wanted to highlight the best and worst decisions of the past year.
1. Senator Claire McCaskill supporting Todd Akin.
The Missouri senator was hopelessly behind in her senate race against prospective GOP opponents and seemingly a sure loser in an increasingly red state.
Then she decided to fund ads for extreme right-winger Todd Akin’s campaign. He won and did not disappoint, making a ludicrous statement about legitimate rape.
Not only did McCaskill win but her opponent’s gaffe damaged the GOP with women all over the country.
2. Irish American Joe Donnelly had a safe House seat in Indiana and seemingly little chance of defeating popular GOP incumbent Senator Richard Lugar. But Donnelly jumped in anyway.
Lugar was beaten by a Tea Party extremist --- (see Todd Aiken above) and Donnelly galloped to victory against Richard Mourdoch even though Obama lost the state by ten points.
3. Joe Biden on gay marriage. When Biden spoke out forthrightly for gay marriage in an interview, Obama had to follow suit whether by design or just Joe being blunt. It helped Obama enormously with gay voters.
4. Obama suspends deportations of young undocumented. Though he had talked a big game, Obama had done little or no work on the plight of the undocumented, which had angered his Hispanic base.
Then he granted effective amnesty to those who had been brought here at a young age and who had kept to the straight and narrow since. The result was a huge boost for his Hispanic support.
5. Bill Clinton speech at Democratic Convention. Obama submerged his own ego and left it to Bill to plead his case. And did he ever!
1. Clint Eastwood at the Republican convention. Who thought having an 82-year-old doddery actor speak to an empty chair was good politics?
2. Obama’s poor prep for the first debate. His only significant wobble in the whole race. He was ill prepared and out of sorts and it showed.
3. Rick Perry in the Republican debates forgetting which departments of government he wanted to cut.
4. Karl Rove deciding to take on Fox News election experts on the Ohio result. Karl, even you can’t spin an election loss.
5. Mitt ‘Oops’ Romney making his 47 per cent are too lazy to work gaffe at a ‘private’ cocktail party. Hey, Mitt, nothing is private anymore.
And the Special Dumb and Dumber Award to Donald Trump – how is that birth certificate thingy going for you Donald?