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The results are in…now what?

By Jeff Berman, Group News Editor
November 03, 2010

While surfing through the cable news channels on Election Night, it became pretty clear that Congress would be turning from a Democratic-led entity to a divided one, with Democrats retaining a slim margin in the Senate and Republicans making a strong showing in the House to take control.

Given the possibly unprecedented level of political acrimony in recent years, it is no surprise that things went the way they did last night. So, the big question now becomes, what happens now?

That is hard to answer at this point, considering that these changes in office took place literally mere hours ago. But it is never too early to speculate, right?

From a freight transportation, supply chain and logistics perspective, there are myriad things that are on the table that this election could potentially impact. But as Newsroom Notes has observed before, many of these things don’t necessarily have that “wow factor” that other political items do.

Case in point, how many Americans are wondering about the future of surface transportation re-authorization or the railroad re-regulation? Chances are, not a ton outside of people like you and I.  Sadly, these things are not likely to gain much political traction heading into a lame-duck Congressional session.

But that does not mean that there are not things which will impact supply chain, logistics, and freight transportation operations in light of the election. On the contrary, there are several things we should all be keeping an eye on: Hours-of-Service; Cap and Trade (i.e. an energy bill); extending or not extending the Bush tax cuts; and the Employee Free Choice Act i.e. Card Check, among others.

Regardless of what comes next for these issues, one thing is clear: politicians can and must find a way to co-exist. Without that, all we have to look forward to is more political posturing, stalemates, and genuine disenchantment all around.

A morning show I saw earlier today, compared the mid-term elections to “hitting the reset button” for the political landscape, and I think that description is appropriate. Now is an opportune time for lawmakers to rise above the rhetoric and in-fighting, put the differences aside and make something happen.

Am I reaching on this? Perhaps, in the short-term until the dust settles on the election. But being optimistic does not hurt. It figures to be an interesting ride. Let’s hang on and hope for the best.

About the Author

Jeff Berman headshot
Jeff Berman
Group News Editor

Jeff Berman is Group News Editor for Logistics Management, Modern Materials Handling, and Supply Chain Management Review. Jeff works and lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, where he covers all aspects of the supply chain, logistics, freight transportation, and materials handling sectors on a daily basis. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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