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Nicholas Goldberg: The Delay We Experienced on November 8
I was prepared to write a lengthy, wretched scream of fury alleging that the United States was once again heading in the direction of Trumpism after having been duped by pollsters once again and anticipating a Republican landslide in Tuesday’s elections.
My argument was that this is who we are right now: a MAGA nation. It’s one thing to previously support a reckless populist like Donald Trump. That may be dismissed as an anomaly or a bad error of judgment. After having already experienced what it meant to travel down this risky route, how could we reply with a straight face, “This is not who we are,” if we returned a few years later and elected a motley crew of Trump acolytes, unqualified incompetents, election skeptics, and QAnon sympathizers?
Amazingly, it didn’t happen on election day as I was halfway through writing that editorial. The blowout never happened. Like Charlie Brown trusted Lucy to hold the football, I had put my trust in pollsters and commentators. I was mistaken.
It’s true that Trump-supporting Republican J.D. Vance won the Ohio U.S. Senate election, but Democratic Sen. Maggie Hassan retained her position against an opponent who disputed the results. Democratic John Fetterman defeated TV doctor Mehmet Oz for U.S. Senate in Pennsylvania, even though I was certain he wouldn’t give his horrible debate performance, and Democratic Josh Shapiro defeated Doug Mastriano, who Axios called “Trumpier than Trump” for governor.
The Georgia U.S. Senate campaign between incumbent Democrat Raphael Warnock and the egregiously unqualified former football player Herschel Walker will now proceed to a runoff. According to the most recent results, the candidates for governor and senator in Arizona, Kari Lake, and Blake Masters, who ran as Trump clones, were both in the rear-view mirror.
Despite serious worries about the economy and inflation, as well as the current Democratic president’s 53% disapproval rating, Democrats managed to avoid absolute disaster. In midterm elections, the party in opposition to the president nearly always picks up a sizable number of House seats. However, it appears that Republicans will perform worse than the average this time.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) told NBC News on election night that there was “definitely not a Republican wave.” In other words, the fight for the nation’s soul has not yet been won. That’s not to imply that the nation has come to its senses or returned to business as usual from before 2016 though. We remain a resentful, fractured mess.
There are 74 million people in the world who supported Trump in the 2020 election, and the bulk of them have not realized their error. Despite all evidence to the contrary, about 70% of Republicans continue to hold the opinion that Biden was not fairly elected.
By a slim margin, it appears that the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives and the Senate will be taken over by the Republicans. Divided rule results from the transfer of control of even just one of the two chambers. legislative inaction. investigative fraud You may forget about any advancements in social welfare, voting rights, climate policy, access to abortion, or any other issue. There will undoubtedly be some election skeptics, reckless agitators, and conspiracy theorists in office.
Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield) is already running for speaker of the House in the hopes that he would be able to gleefully oversee the chaos and obstruction if or when the GOP gains power. The legislative agenda of Biden? It will not progress.
And let’s not even begin to discuss the numerous local candidates who will have won office on the basis of their pledges to undermine reliable voting infrastructure, enact additional voting restrictions, and seize control of future election oversight. It is quite concerning that electoral fraud is being tolerated.
A bigger worry is that former President Trump unless this election persuades him otherwise, is anticipated to declare his bid for reelection on Tuesday at Mar-a-Lago. Therefore, the prolonged national nightmare is far from ending.
The MAGA campaign is still influential. It resulted in two impeachments, a constitutional crisis that was close to occurring, international ridicule, January 6, a new level of party animosity, and a widely recognized threat to the future of American democracy — and Trump still intends to revive it.
A nation whose citizens once appeared to share certain fundamental national ideals, such as respect for democracy and faith in the rule of law, is nevertheless torn apart. Except when it explodes, political violence pulsates just below the surface.
However, I’m not yet in a full-on depressed state. Perhaps the tyranny of low expectations is at work. We must find comfort wherever we can. The main lesson from this week is that there is still some hope. Trump had limited success in his attempts to consolidate his control over the GOP, win seats for the many candidates he backed, and set himself up for the 2024 election. Even though our situation is not ideal, it is better than I had anticipated.