When you vote, you will be given a sticker. It’s a piece of paper with adhesive on one side and decorations on the other. You put the sticky side on your clothes. Also, you get to weigh in on who does what in the government. It’s fun! Will you elect a dog as dog catcher? A cat? A fox to guard the henhouse?! It’s up to you! Choose wisely!
Predictions for the Midterms
There is a lot of misery from the muralists’ failure to make any attempt to govern in an inclusive way. Trump stomps on the values of America on the regular. The Republicans sit at the table counting their money. They pause on occasion to look over at what the president is doing to the country but don’t do anything about it.
That is not a healthy dynamic. Everybody knows it, including the elected Republicans who keep following along, wayward elephants who think Trump’s their mother. They don’t want the music to stop. Keep dancing, Trump says, and nobody (who’s a Republican politician) gets hurt.
But the voters know. Even the Trump supporters know. They think it’s all a game. They think Jesus is coming soon to put them in the goat pile and that it’s too late to fix climate change or the crumbling bridges. But the rest of us, who plan to be alive through and after Day Zero, want good governance.
In the House things look good for the Democrats. They currently hold 193 seats (two vacancies) to the Republican party’s 235 (five vacancies). The magic number is 218, so they need 23 seats.
FiveThirtyEight: “2018 House Forecast” gives them a chance in the mid-80s of winning control, but where within that range they’ll fall is harder. The median and average are both short of a direct reversal of the numbers (a 40-seat swing), and in recent history the largest the Democrats gained was 2006 with 31 seats (in 2010 the Republicans had a 63 seat pickup).
Signs point to turnout exceeding 2006 and 2010, so I’m predicting the Democrats beat their numbers but fall short of the Republican record: 42 seats putting it 237 to the Republican party’s 198.
In the Senate, as anybody who’s looked knows, the Democrats have a rocky path. I will be very surprised if they can make the climb, but it could happen if there are enough draw races (like the gubernatorial election in Florida and some of the House races, particularly in red districts that might have gone uncontested in other years). Democrats should learn that contesting races (with reasonable candidates) always helps: if it gets just a few more people to get an “I voted” sticker, that can turn the tide for other races.
I predict a 50-50 Senate (net gain of one seat for the Democrats) with a very busy Vice President Pence (Mother will be pissed).
We should all have the luxury to vote by mail, but for those of us who don’t, it’s to the polls on 6 November 2018. Even if we don’t have vote-by-mail, we should vote as though we are post carriers:
Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.
Because that’s what voting is: it’s sending a message, a signal, to our nation’s capital. And boy do we all have a message to deliver in 2018. We want America to be what e’s meant to be. Smart and ready for the rest of this century and the centuries to come. Self-improving steady and dependable. Welcoming and helping eir neighbors and strangers alike.
We do not want America back, as though we could own it. We want to share America again. To share it here at home, and to share the values of America with the world. We must be rid of the feeling this nation is held captive by those who want to possess and decide without hearing the thing out. They do not own America, and any who seeks to conquer her, internal or external, by force or by deception, will hear us all tell them exactly where they can stick that notion.
The midterm election is on Tuesday, 6 November 2018.
(The 2020 election is in about 104 weeks. hehe)