WHAT THE HELL

Kevin Brennan Writes About What It's Like

Vote in the midterms: it’s our only hope 😱

I spotted a tweet the other day, admonishing us to stop saying Democrats are going to lose in the upcoming midterms. It said we should be more like Ukrainians, vowing to fight to victory.

The problem is, I’ve been here before. I can’t erase memories of hope and confidence that got dashed on election day like eggs thrown at Trump’s motorcade.

Take 1980, for example.

Like today’s Democrats, incumbent president Jimmy Carter happened to be at the wheel when the economy was taking a huge beating from rampant inflation. There was also an oil crisis in 1979, as the presidential campaign was starting to gear up, and then, of course, came the Iran hostage crisis in November. Still, I had hope that the voters of America would see that Ronald Reagan was dangerous and reactionary. He, like today’s Republicans, wanted to drag the country back to a time before the Democrats brought us all these problems with their socialism and their race consciousness and their homosexuality and abortion on demand. Things were better in the old days—when there were no regulations, no Civil Rights Act, no Voting Rights Act, no desegregation, no women’s rights.

We all know what happened in 1980. Carter wound up losing in the Electoral College by a factor of ten. Because people were disgruntled. Angry. They lashed out. They sent a message.

In spite of my current hopes—that the Democrats can hang on to at least one house in Congress and win some of the crucial state races for governor, secretary of state, and attorney general (important for the integrity of the 2024 presidential election)—I’m feeling 1980’s breath on the back of my neck.

And I remember the 1994 midterms, when Newt Gingrich took over the gavel. Voters actually bought his Contract With America, which was nothing but a lot of hot air and Heritage Foundation talking points.

And I remember 2004, when we had a chance to back away from the disastrous George W. Bush (who had been installed by the Supreme Court on a 5-4 vote). Instead the voters doubled down because we were at war—a war manufactured by the Bush/Cheney lies about Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction.

In other words, American voters have often been vindictive, ill-informed, and impetuous. I’m getting the same vibe now. They’re ready to hand the reins to the GOP as a check on Joe Biden’s non-existent socialism, wokeness, and immigrant love. The loss of Roe v. Wade is already a distant memory.

Make no mistake. I’m hopeful for a different outcome. I vote straight Democrat because the alternative is a stake in the heart of democracy. It’s just that the past has a long echo, and I keep hearing in the background phrases like “Government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.”

Ronald Reagan, everyone. He lives.

Far too many of our friends, neighbors, and relatives are pigging out on that kind of junk food, so buckle up for November 8. There will be some unpleasant surprises.

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8 comments on “Vote in the midterms: it’s our only hope 😱

  1. Pingback: Vote in the midterms: it’s our only hope 😱 – Writergurlny

  2. kingmidget
    October 20, 2022

    I have no optimism left for the midterms. Too many people believe the lie that Biden is responsible for the economic ails that are bedeviling us. Even though the problems are worldwide. We remain a country with too may people who are too susceptible to the lies and fear-mongering of the GOP.

    • Kevin Brennan
      October 20, 2022

      Yeah, that’s what terrifies me. People don’t bother to think about issues; they just absorb what they’re told by media figures. And they’ll be stunned when the GOP sunsets Social Security and Medicare and rolls back gay marriage and makes abortion illegal nationwide.

      • kingmidget
        October 20, 2022

        On abortion — I’ve convinced myself that no national law on abortion (whether to ban or to allow) is constitutional. That said, there’s no guarantee that politicized courts will rule correctly.

      • Kevin Brennan
        October 20, 2022

        I hope you write a blog post about that. I’d like to hear the details.

      • kingmidget
        October 20, 2022

        The only provision I’m aware of where it might fit is the commerce clause. But for that to work you gotta show that abortion affects interstate commerce. There is an argument there – that having to travel across state lines to get an abortion does just that. But the current Supreme Court is pretty clearly looking to tamp down on the use of the commerce clause to justify the federal government doing anything and everything.

      • Kevin Brennan
        October 20, 2022

        Interesting. I was thinking the 14th amendment could support federal abortion rights, but you’re spot on about this Supreme Court. Opus Dei activists.

      • kingmidget
        October 20, 2022

        I may be wrong, but to apply the 14th amendment, there has to be a right to the thing and this Supreme Court has now ruled there is no right to an abortion.

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This entry was posted on October 20, 2022 by in politics and tagged , , , , , , .
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