On Tuesday, voters decided to deliver Trumpism a message. Tone it down – or lose.
A charitable definition of Trumpism would define it as cultural and economic nationalism.
However, for many, Trumpism is hate and fear of difference and equality. Trumpism has also shown its incompetence.
In Tuesday’s polls, the electorate showed its displeasure with Trumpism. Most prominently, New Jersey and New Jersey gave Democratic candidates for governor decisive victories.
Voters Embrace Democrats for Governor
In New Jersey, Democrat Phil Murphy won big over his GOP challenger, Kim Guadagno.
Even though Guadagno maintained her distance from Trump, her service as lieutenant governor under the unpopular Chris Christie was toxic. Christie has been a loyal Trump supporter since the latter was nominated.
For federal employees living in Virginia, GOP-Trump incompetence could also have been determining factors. From 2002 to 2014, the number of federal employees living in Virginia has risen from 143, 234 to 325, 219 – potentially a potent electoral group.
Not surprisingly, a right-wing ally of Trump called for merging the parts of Virginia close to Washington DC with the capital. He is clearly hoping that this way Virginia would be less of a swing state.
According to exit polls, 34 percent of Virginians voted to oppose Trump. More importantly, voters rejected the GOP candidate Ed Gillespie’s Trumpist emphasis on the divisive issue of immigration.
Indeed, in many locales, inclusion triumphed.
Voters Back Inclusion
Democrat Danica Roem, an openly transgender person, won a seat in the Virginia House of Delegates. Roem defeated a Republican who wanted to dictate use of bathrooms.
Ravi Bhalla, a turbaned Sikh, became mayor of Hoboken, New Jersey. Ignorant racist flyers had targeted Bhalla during the campaign.
Voters also ignored racist mailers to elect a Chinese American and an Indian American to a New Jersey school board. Also in New Jersey, a woman defeated a local GOP politician who had ridiculed the Women’s March.
Other races also revealed the trend towards inclusion.
A Liberian refugee became mayor of Montana’s capital, Helena. Andrea Jenkins, a black transgender woman, gained a seat on the Minneapolis City Council. Seattle got its first openly lesbian mayor.
Even in states considered “red” GOP territory, minorities and women won elections. Voters did not see intelligence and competence being exclusive to one race or gender.
Voters Punish Stupidity
Clearly, the elections showed voters rebuked stupidity. Unfortunately, politics has a lot of idiocy.
For example, anyone who has dealt with health care knows the value of immigrants in the US health care system. It’s senseless to be anti-immigrant today.
Another example of a lack of common sense was in my own state of Ohio.
An Ohio ballot measure which proposed limiting drug prices paid by the state failed decisively. Foolishly, the measure included a provision where taxpayers would have to pay legal fees if the initiative’s proponents decided to sue the state.
We may have begun to fix our broken politics. Overall, Tuesday’s voters showed wisdom in thumping Trumpism.