Posted tagged ‘2018 Midterms’

Midterms Assessment

November 13, 2018

The midterm election results should send a wake up call to both Republicans and Democrats. When either party answers the call, they will hear a disturbing message.  Many voters are confused over whether they more pro or anti President Trump or are their votes tied to party platforms (and results). 

Many voters have conflated the concept of being a Republican with being Pro-Trump and many other voters have conflated being a Democrat with being anti-Trump.  

Here’s why this is worrisome.

Republicans,  after having voted to repeal Obamacare over 90 times and having offered no suitable “replace” legislation, that is legislation containing “pre-existing condition” coverage, never the less, told voters that they were for “pre-existing conditions” coverage just the same.  Too many dependable Republican voters seemed to believe these politicians. Should voters believe that Republicans really do favor healthcare for all Americans?

And, how about tax cuts.  Republicans beamed about passing the “largest” tax cut in history (???) even though the tax cut gave bundles to corporations and the wealthiest Americans and crumbs to the average middle class worker.  Republicans then told voters that Democrats would raise taxes.  

Where is common sense?  The Republican tax cuts were unfunded and the cost associated with these corporate and super rich benefits are going directly to the Federal Debt.  Fiscal responsibility?

And speaking of deficits, Republicans have spoken with great energy (all throughout former President Obama’s years) about the Democrat’s reckless monetary management.  When asked about the tax cut driven increases in deficits, Mitch McConnell, with a straight face, said Republicans would fix the deficit with cuts to Medicare and Social Security.  What has Trump got to do with that?   Hmmm.

So the learning is – voters must separate Republican platforms (and track records) from President Trump.  There are plenty of reasons for people of good faith to be anti-Trump.  Pick one that is important to you, for example, Trump’s disregard for the environment, his war on immigrants, his foolish trade wars, or his despicable attitude towards women.  There are plenty more.  But look at what elected Republicans have done.

There may even be rational reasons why people may be pro-Trump (like “he keeps his promises”, he’s a man of action”, “he tells it like it is”, or “he cares about jobs”).  President Trump, however, does not tell the truth, is mean spirited against many who cannot defend themselves, and has clearly enriched his family businesses and those of his wealthy supporters.  Regardless, those who still like Donald Trump will do themselves a disservice if they do not also look beyond the Donald Trump personage and ask the simple question, “what has he and elected Republican Congress members done for me”?

Democrats did well in the 2018 midterms because enough people asked that question.  Across the country in districts where the President did well in 2016, Democrats won.  Why?  

The most likely reason is that Democrats spoke to issues important to voters and the Republican record on these same issues were not what voters thought best.

As the country looks towards 2020, Democrats need to further distill the key issues and put forward a clear and concise picture.  Healthcare, infrastructure (read jobs) investment, and campaign reforms (read transparency in campaign financing) are three areas to start with.  Let the Mueller investigation lead to its own conclusions and do not, I repeat, do not say the word “impeachment” before it is on most Americans’ tongues.