Election Postmortem

I voted D for Senate and Congress and R for everything else. Our races were not competitive but they are representative of wider trends. I couldn’t vote for the R candidates for Senate and Congress and barely managed to vote for the Republican challenger for the governorship because they weren’t serious people. They were bug-out crazies who weren’t trying to win. In all 3 cases, there was no campaign. No online presence, no yard signs (or, in Bailey’s case, a tiny number of the most poorly designed yard signs I’ve ever seen), no effort only to howl at the moon at night and not in public.

And the issues, my God. School closures, the forced masking of toddlers, the destruction of school sports and school programs for the developmentally disabled kids – which were some of the worst in the nation – were not mentioned. At all. The endless executive orders by the Dem governor, the destruction of small businesses – none of it was mentioned. My 6-year-old understands that in Illinois you need to run on the mismanagement of COVID. But Republicans ignored this surefire winning issue completely. In Illinois!

Inflation, another big issue. What kind of a suicidal move is it to recruit a bunch of heiresses to pose as “working mothers worried about paying bills”? These were the Republican candidates. Heiresses. You run an heiress against an actual mom from next door that we all know, and who do you think will sound more convincing on economic woes? Who do you think we are to love heiresses so much? Democrats?

The heiresses don’t seem to have noticed COVID, so it wasn’t mentioned in their mailers.

As we’ve seen with DeSantis, issues are what matters. Hard work, results – this is what brings victory. Random bleatings by fake working moms don’t work.

This was a well-deserved drubbing for the GOP. I hope it will finally serve as a lesson. We need a real party of the working people. That space is wide open in the US. Somebody needs to step into it.

20 thoughts on “Election Postmortem

  1. The Republican party is a mess right now. I know some people would like to believe Trump is a nothing burger right now, but he is a huge shadow over the Republican party right now and the longer he remains there, the longer it will take them to move to the REAL issues.

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  2. Republicans here ran smart campaigns and still lost races they shouldn’t have. Candidate quality definitely played a role in many losses, but I think Dems were also very energized and turned out at a similar rate as Republicans. I refuse to believe this was because of “election denialism” so I will guess that it was because of Dobbs. Honestly I figured this kind of midterm hit was inevitable after it happened but then I convinced myself it wasn’t.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dobbs, definitely. And the GOP played into that by letting the Dems run on abortion. Republicans went to great lengths to inform me, in recent weeks, about some utterly fictitious California abortion law that allows abortions up to 28 days after birth but made no effort to explain what they are planning to do about the inflation.

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        1. This is 100% Dobbs: “Latino Voters: Republicans won 40% of Latino voters, up from 33% in 2018. The result was a substantial deterioration in Democratic margins: Democrats won Latino voters by 16 percentage points this year, down from 31 points in the last midterms.

          Latino voters also had a stronger voice in the electorate, accounting for 11% of midterm voters, up from 9% in 2018.

          Black Voters: Democrats won 83% of Black voters, down from 91% in the last midterm year. The Republican share rose by 6 points.”

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          1. And this is COVID: “White Suburban Women: This group had backed Democrats by 4 percentage points in 2018, which helped the party pick up a large number of GOP-held House seats in the suburbs and take the House majority that year. This year, white women in the suburbs favored Republicans by 7 points, VoteCast found.”

            We are on a good track generally but we need higher-quality candidates and much better messaging.

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  3. When the backlash against student loan forgiveness began and right wingers were saying “this is an upward transfer of wealth and does nothing to help the working class,” I was kinda like, ok that’s true, but neither do you. I voted Republican because I find them to be less actively hostile to me at this point, but neither party is for the working class.

    Credit to both Ohio Senate candidates for not being like this. Whatever their other flaws may have been (and there were plenty), they both had something to offer in this regard.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We had a constitutional amendment in Illinois on the ballot. It would basically give the teacher’s union the right to extort the state even more than it did during COVID. Did anybody try to explain it? Nope. All we got was the argument that it makes the Chamber of Commerce unhappy. The amendment passed by 60+% of the vote. All they needed to do is connect it to COVID and the school closures and it would have bombed. But no, COVID is apparently a taboo topic for the Republicans.

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      1. oof. I’m sorry.

        I recall three constitutional amendments on the ballot, all of them stupid, and for once, none of them got enough votes to pass. Same kind of thing that comes up on every single ballot– “some special group of people deserves a discount on their property taxes”.

        And every single election, we all have to get out and vote for “No, we like living in a no-income-tax state, how about you take your special retired P.E. teachers/koala preservationists/firefighters/veterans/politicians’ nephews/waterfront dwellers tax breaks, tear them into tiny pieces, and snort them up your noses?”

        They seriously tried one this year that would have given owners of waterfront property a tax break for installing seawalls. Wasn’t worded that way, but that’s what it came down to, because back in the low-rent swamp where we used to live, any kind of “flood mitigation” measures are basically illegal per the EPA. Look, people: if you can afford the waterfront property, you can afford the taxes. Deal with it.

        They still get over 50% of the vote, but I think it takes two-thirds to pass them. We’re a little more wary about that stuff ever since the pig-crates-and-high-speed-rail debacle. Probably the new generation needs to be reminded.

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  4. Here you already have Trump attacking DeSantis:
    “Donald Trump has warned Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis against running for president in 2024, saying doing so would harm the Republican Party.

    He also threatened to release unflattering information about the 44-year-old, without providing details.

    Mr DeSantis won a landslide victory in Tuesday’s midterms, underlining his popularity and further fuelling speculation he will launch a bid.

    Mr Trump is also tipped to announce a presidential run in the coming days.

    He told US network Fox News that the Florida governor should stay out of the race.”
    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-63563862

    Yeah, he wasn’t running last night but he has the capability to keep screwing things up for the Republican party. He’s already doing so.

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    1. On the one hand, I wish he’d just retire already.

      On the other hand, I keep hoping he’ll do something yuuuuge that finally just breaks the Republican party (already terminally fractured IMO) so we can finally shuck the establishment party leadership, and possibly form some new parties without it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The Republican party is already broken. They have little to no clear policy proposals and many of the areas where they used to be leaders, they no longer are.

        For example, they used to be the party of national defense and security. It’s crazy how the party of Ronald Reagan is now considered an ally by Russian nationalist:
        “Trump generates a lot of hatred in America’s society… the more they hate each other, the better it is for us.”

        “We trust and believe in the Republicans. Do we even have any other allies?”

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        1. Both the Republican party and the Democratic party are irretrievably corrupt, and owe their allegiance to bankers, DoD contractors, drug companies, etc.

          The rest of us, whose interests are not the same as the interests of zillionaires and global corporations, need a divorce from the parties. I’m not sure it’ll ever happen, and I’m not sure it can happen as long as the parties exist and have a stranglehold on elections.

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          1. At the very least we badly need a third party. I vote Libertarian almost every chance I get, but not enough people do so.

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  5. “I’ve been discovered …”

    Yeah, about that …

    “It looks like the DeSantis win in Florida might be the only major win for our side tonight. I hope this is a lesson in what works for the rest of GOP.”

    “Our side” … as in the Republican Party?

    No, you’ve been discovered, and some people had it right.

    Here’s the bottom line: you are either outside this political party system or you’re inside it.

    If you’re outside this system, you are to the normie view an Independent, even if you’re an Anarchist who registered out of spite just to cast a non-vote.

    Inside this system, you are a Democrat, a Republican, a Libertarian, or a member of a number of even less successful parties than the train wreck that the Libertarian Party has become.

    So when you say this next bit, you are actually telling people that you are an Independent because of your actions, and what you believe doesn’t actually matter.

    “I voted D for Senate and Congress and R for everything else.”

    Which makes you an Independent voter at best and an inconsistent Democrat voter at worst (from the Democrat perspective).

    But it doesn’t make you at all a Conservative or a Republican.

    “I’m a registered Democrat and have no idea how to de-register.”

    This is one where they had it right.

    “I couldn’t vote for the R candidates for Senate and Congress …”

    No, you could have voted for the “R candidates” had you been an actual Republican voting for Republican party candidates on that basis.

    How you feel about the “R candidates” doesn’t matter because the entire point of voting for a political party rather than individual candidates is to create a sufficient force to deny success to all of the other parties.

    If that point of view does not mesh with what you want to achieve, then you are not a member of any political party, much less the Republicans or the Democrats.

    So if you want to make a habit of this, register as an Independent.

    I’m registered as an Independent in Florida when I don’t vote for any of the candidates.

    However … in the past, I did vote, but this was pure election terrorism.

    Most people won’t vote for the local candidates, such as judges and elected bureaucrats, who stand in elections as unaffiliated candidates, with no advertising, and get re-elected by a small number of people anyway to perpetuate a sham permanence of local power.

    So I motivated a small ad hoc group that didn’t vote for any of the party candidates, but instead we’d vote together for some randomly selected candidates that were not the incumbents for these offices.

    Within our voting district for those candidates, most of these functionaries were lucky to get ten or twelve votes, and so our creating over one hundred votes as a bloc for some totally unheard of candidates to sweep the local bureaucracy clean threw the locals into shock.

    HOW DARE YOU VOTE OUT OUR CHOSEN FUNCTIONARIES.

    Well, we did, and that’s the closest I can come as a former political hack myself to wanting to vote for anyone.

    Even then, all of the candidates didn’t have a party affiliation.

    So let’s stop pretending you’re all Team Elephant.

    Klara’s got it right: you keep giving those votes of consent to that ugly government that makes her wear face masks and does other things she knows deep down matter-of-fact are terrorism.

    Maybe you should listen. 🙂

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    1. “How you feel about the “R candidates” doesn’t matter because the entire point of voting for a political party rather than individual candidates is to create a sufficient force to deny success to all of the other parties.”
      This is not true in multiparty systems. In this case, the main goal is to deny success to your chief opponents not all other parties.
      https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/article/2022-11-08-how-the-anc-eff-partnership-failed-in-ekurhuleni-and-led-to-the-re-election-of-mayor-tania-campbell/

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      1. “This is not true …”

        Ah, no: this wasn’t meant to solve for some general case or some external contingencies that are in place somewhere else.

        What I wrote stands in terms of how American politics works.

        There are no coalitions and there are no situations where you have a Uniparty of the Governing.

        But not voting for any of the ruling terrorists would be even easier in South Africa!

        Especially when you have Actual Communist Terrorists(tm) that people can vote for.

        So brave!

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  6. “I’ve been discovered …”

    Yeah, about that …

    “It looks like the DeSantis win in Florida might be the only major win for our side tonight. I hope this is a lesson in what works for the rest of GOP.”

    “Our side” … as in the Republican Party?

    No, you’ve been discovered, and some people had it right.

    Here’s the bottom line: you are either outside this political party system or you’re inside it.

    If you’re outside this system, you are to the normie view an Independent, even if you’re an Anarchist who registered out of spite just to cast a non-vote.

    Inside this system, you are a Democrat, a Republican, a Libertarian, or a member of a number of even less successful parties than the train wreck that the Libertarian Party has become.

    So when you say this next bit, you are actually telling people that you are an Independent because of your actions, and what you believe doesn’t actually matter.

    “I voted D for Senate and Congress and R for everything else.”

    Which makes you an Independent voter at best and an inconsistent Democrat voter at worst (from the Democrat perspective).

    But it doesn’t make you at all a Conservative or a Republican.

    “I’m a registered Democrat and have no idea how to de-register.”

    This is one where they had it right.

    “I couldn’t vote for the R candidates for Senate and Congress …”

    No, you could have voted for the “R candidates” had you been an actual Republican voting for Republican party candidates on that basis.

    How you feel about the “R candidates” doesn’t matter because the entire point of voting for a political party rather than individual candidates is to create a sufficient force to deny success to all of the other parties.

    If that point of view does not mesh with what you want to achieve, then you are not a member of any political party, much less the Republicans or the Democrats.

    Do you want to make a habit of this? Register as an Independent.

    I’m registered as an Independent in Florida when I don’t vote for any of the candidates.

    However … in the past, I did vote, but this was pure election terrorism.

    Most people won’t vote for the local candidates, such as judges and elected bureaucrats, who stand in elections as unaffiliated candidates, with no advertising, and get re-elected by a small number of people anyway to perpetuate a sham permanence of local power.

    So I motivated a small ad hoc group that didn’t vote for any of the party candidates, but instead we’d vote together for some randomly selected candidates that were not the incumbents for these offices.

    Within our voting district for those candidates, most of these functionaries were lucky to get ten or twelve votes, and so our creating over one hundred votes as a bloc for some totally unheard of candidates to sweep the local bureaucracy clean threw the locals into shock.

    HOW DARE YOU VOTE OUT OUR CHOSEN FUNCTIONARIES.

    Well, we did, and that’s the closest I can come as a former political hack myself to wanting to vote for anyone.

    Even then, all of the candidates didn’t have a party affiliation.

    So let’s stop pretending you’re all Team Elephant.

    Klara’s got it right: you keep giving those votes of consent to that ugly government that makes her wear face masks and does other things she knows deep down matter-of-fact are terrorism.

    Maybe you should listen. 🙂

    Like

  7. “We need a real party of the working people. That space is wide open in the US.”

    There is ZERO chance that any third political party can be anything but a transient farce in modern U.S. national politics.

    Anybody remember the “American Independent Party” that ran George Wallace for President in 1968?

    The “Reform Party” that ran Ross Perot and then Pat Buchanan in the Nineties?

    The “Green Party” that dreamed big with Ralph Nader in 1996?

    The “Libertarian Party” in every Presidential election since 1980?

    And now the starry-eyed “Forward Party” founded by Andrew Yang after the Democrats were smart enough to give him the boot?

    The VERY rigid American electoral vote system (founded centuries ago to ensure that all states, regardless of population size, would be guaranteed a meaningful voice in national elections) effectively renders all third parties irrevelant and kills them off. Always has, always will.

    To think otherwise is simply wishful thinking by naive politicians who should know better.

    Like

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