BOSTON (CBS) – Congratulations to Senator-elect Ed Markey.

Nearly 30 years ago, a young Congressman Markey dropped out of a race for U.S. Senate at the last minute in order to keep his House seat, and some say that decision has haunted him ever since.

It must be a nice feeling to finally reach that goal.

And congratulations to challenger Gabriel Gomez as well.

The Markey campaign never was able to drive up his negative rating as high as they wanted to, testimony to Gomez’s likeability and composure.

He has a future in politics, if he wants it.

Listen to Jon’s commentary:

So, now that both Markey and Gomez walk away feeling good about themselves, what about the rest of us?

Tuesday night’s outcome didn’t change much.

We continue to suffer from federal budget cuts that could easily do serious damage to the Massachusetts economy if they continue and expand.

Our once-vaunted clout in Congress, which included very senior members of both the House and Senate, is mostly gone now, lost to the deaths of Joe Moakley and Ted Kennedy, John Kerry’s decision to move on, and Markey’s trade of top-ten seniority in the House for most-junior-member status in the Senate.

Who will protect us if they follow through on talk of another round of military base closures?

Kudos to the Markey campaign for devising a winning strategy and executing it, but the truth is, Markey’s victory does nothing to ease the partisan gridlock in Washington.

If anything, the defeats of relative moderates like Scott Brown and Gomez embolden the hard-liners of both parties.

So while today is a good day for Markey and even for Gomez, we’re still wondering – what’s in all this for us?

You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.

Jon Keller


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