Midterm Elections Of 2018

Brennan Center For Justice: 19 States With New Voting Restrictions Since 2016

The William Brennan Center For Justice, named after the great former Supreme Court Justice, tracks violations of Civil Rights and Civil Liberties, and has exposed the reality that 19 states, since the Supreme Court backtracked on the Voting Rights Act of 1965 in a decision in 2013, have made the right to vote much more difficult, and affecting election results.

In 2016, 14 states had new voting restrictions in place for the first time in a presidential election, with these states including Alabama, Arizona, Indiana, Kansas, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and Wisconsin.

In 2017, Arkansas, North Dakota, Missouri, Georgia, and Iowa added new laws.

So 8 Southern states of the old Confederacy (Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Mississippi, South Carolina, Texas, Tennessee, Virginia) are back where they were before the Voting Rights Act of 1965, making it harder for blacks and other people of color, and poor people in general, to be able to have the chance to vote.

But also, the 8 Midwestern states of Ohio, Indiana, Iowa, Missouri, Wisconsin, North Dakota, Nebraska and Kansas have gown down the same road.

And Arizona in the West and New Hampshire and Rhode Island on the Atlantic Coast also have made it more difficult to vote.

Look at this list of states, and notice almost all of them, except Virginia, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island voted for Donald Trump.

So we have the possibility that despite public opinion polls that indicate a “Blue Wave”, the restrictions on voting rights could impact election result in November.

What Is Needed In November: Blue Wave (Democrats), Pink Wave (Women), Orange Wave (Men And Gun Safety), Green Wave (Environment)

With the midterm elections less than four weeks away, it is clear that what is needed is not one “wave”, but four “waves”.

A “Blue Wave” is needed, the gaining of, hopefully, control of both houses of Congress, and the majority of state governorships and state legislative majorities.

But a “Pink Wave’ is needed by a mass uprising by women of all backgrounds, races, sections of the nation, to make clear that misogyny and abuse of women by conservatives and Republicans will no longer be tolerated.

There is also a need for an “Orange Wave”, promoted by Fred Guttenberg, the father of Parkland victim Jaime Guttenberg, on the need for a serious movement toward gun control and regulation, as we are losing tens of thousands of victims, many of them in schools and universities, and also many through suicide. This must include serious promotion of mental health initiatives, so that we do not have the constant massacres of innocent human beings, because of the lack of concern by the gun industry, which is only interested in profits.

And finally, a “Green Wave” is needed by those who care about climate change and the environment, determined to fight to prevent the destruction of the environment by coal companies, oil companies, natural gas companies, and corporations in general, who all think only of the profit motive now, and not the long range effect of what their companies are doing. And the struggle against the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of the Interior leadership must be fought with vehemence, as the future of America and the entire globe are at stake.

Unwise For Republicans To Denounce Lisa Murkowski, And Democrats To Denounce Joe Manchin: They Could Switch Parties After Midterm Elections

Now that the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court has been accomplished, by the smallest margin since 1881, there is discussion in both political parties about retribution to be paid for the one Republican Senator, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and the one Democratic Senator, Joe Manchin of West Virginia, who broke ranks in their parties and voted against the party line.

This is very unwise, and could reverberate after the midterm elections are completed.

What if the US Senate ends up with a 50-50 split, which would give Vice President Mike Pence the ability to organize the Senate for the Republicans?

If Lisa Murkowski is angry in November, she could decide to switch parties, becoming a Democrat, as long as the party promised, with her 16 years of Senate experience, to give her a committee chairmanship. That would make the Senate 51 Democrats and 49 Republicans, backfiring on the Republicans.

Or what if the Senate became 51-49 Democratic, and Joe Manchin decided to switch to the Republican Party, making a 50-50 tie, giving Mike Pence the ability to organize the Senate for the Republicans?

What it comes down to is that no political party should punish its members because they are not always in lockstep with their party.

There is no reason why all Democrats have to be to the left of center, and all Republicans have to be to the right of center.

In the past, there were a lot of people who “crossed the aisle” on a regular basis, and accomplished great goals, as for instance Lyndon B. Johnson gaining support of many Republicans for the Civil Rights Act of 1964 due to his ability to work with Republican Senate Minority Leader Everett Dirksen.

Another instance was a deal on Social Security reform in 1983 between Ronald Reagan and Democratic House Speaker Thomas “Tip” O’Neill.

The only way to move ahead is to overcome the confrontational, no holds barred rhetoric, that now has made Congress such an inept institution, and promote willingness of both parties to negotiate and compromise for the good of the nation and its future.

The Next Speaker Of The House IF GOP Keeps Majority: Kevin McCarthy, Steve Scalise, Or Jim Jordan

If the Republican Party, somehow, holds on to majority control of the House of Representatives in the 116th Congress, they will need to select a new Speaker of the House, as Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan is leaving Congress at the end of this year.

At this point, there are three key contenders for the Speakership in the Republican Party:

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California

House Majority Whip Steve Scalise of Louisiana

House Freedom Caucus member Jim Jordan of Ohio

All three, honestly, make outgoing Speaker Paul Ryan look better by comparison, and yet, my readers know how much I dislike, and have denounced Paul Ryan, including when he was the Vice Presidential running mate of Mitt Romney in the Presidential Election of 2012, for which I was viciously attacked on several right wing websites at the time.

But seriously, Kevin McCarthy is practically the “lap dog” of Donald Trump, extremely loyal and obedient, and was seemingly aware of Russian Collusion in 2016, was talking about it at a Republican House conference meeting, until Paul Ryan told him to stop talking about it. He is a man without any principles other than the advancement of Donald Trump and his agenda, part of the Trump party, rather than the traditional Republican Party, and even more so than Paul Ryan, who has been unwilling to speak out against Trump’s disgraceful tweets and policies. McCarthy has refused to engage in Town Hall events in his Bakersfield, California district since 2010. He also promoted pursuit of Hillary Clinton for the Benghazi, Libya incident, where four diplomats were killed, gaining a reputation of promoting a “hit job” on her, when many more diplomats were killed at embassies during the Presidency of George W. Bush.

Steve Scalise, thankfully, recovered from being shot at the Congressional baseball game in June 2017, but it had no effect on his views on gun control, which is no regulation at all. Beyond that, Scalise used to be a friend of Ku Klux Klan Wizard and white supremacist David Duke, although now, of course, he denies it, and tries to claim it was not so. He would, in this author’s view, be a worse choice than McCarthy. However, for those who are uncomfortable with McCarthy, and might prefer a Southerner as the next Speaker, due to the strong GOP presence in the South, he might be seen as a potential favorite, and certainly less disgraceful by comparison, to the third choice, Jim Jordan of Ohio.

Jim Jordan, who is a co leader of the House Freedom Caucus, the most Far Right group in the Republican Party, has been accused of covering up abuse of athletes on the wrestling team at Ohio State University, when he was an assistant coach in the 1980s. He was one of the Republicans who promoted government shutdowns, and has done everything possible to block the House Judiciary Committee and the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee from pursuing investigation of the Donald Trump collusion with Russia in the 2016 campaign. He also pursed the Benghazi, Libya investigation of the deaths of four diplomats, targeting Hillary Clinton in a total of 11 investigations, which found no evidence of wrongdoing, and which featured 11 hours of testimony by Clinton, with no sign of weakness on her part, as compared to the performance of many others investigated by Congressional committees. Plain and simple, Jordan would be the absolute worst of the three choices being considered by the Republicans, although others might join the fray after the midterm elections.

It is indeed a very sad situation when we can look back on John Boehner as being far better than Paul Ryan, Kevin McCarthy, Steve Scalise, and Jim Jordan.

Let us hope that one of the latter three will be the Minority Leader, rather than the Speaker of the House in 2019-2020.

The Midwest Battleground Will Determine The Political Future, And The Prospects For Democrats Look Good

The Midwest battleground—Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, Michigan, Wisconsin, Michigan—is where the modern political system began, and has been a crucial factor in elections ever since the Republican Party was first created in Michigan and Wisconsin in the summer of 1854.

The Midwest is the heartland of the nation, often ridiculed by those who are from the Atlantic and Pacific Coasts, but the states of this area have a “wallop”, the potential to decide the national political trend.

Nine Republican Presidents came from the Midwest—Abraham Lincoln from Illinois; Ulysses S. Grant, Rutherford B. Hayes, James A. Garfield, William McKinley, William Howard Taft, Warren G. Harding from Ohio; Benjamin Harrison from Indiana; and Herbert Hoover from Iowa; along with Gerald Ford from Michigan inheriting the Presidency via the 25th Amendment.

Also, other Republican nominees (Alf Landon, Bob Dole) and Republican President Dwight D. Eisenhower were from “next door” Kansas in the Great Plains.

At the same time, Midwestern Democrats who ran for President include James Cox of Ohio, Adlai Stevenson II of Illinois, Hubert Humphrey and Walter Mondale from Minnesota, and George McGovern of “next door” South Dakota in the Great Plains, along with Harry Truman of Missouri and Barack Obama of Illinois.

So the Midwest and its nearby neighbors have had an amazing impact, and now the polls indicate the Midwest Governorships that are up for election trend toward Democrats in Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota, with Ohio also in play.

If the Midwest or most of it is won by Democrats, then the effect on reapportionment of seats in the House of Representatives after the 2020 Census figures are in, will greatly change the political equation for the next decade, so these gubernatorial elections are crucial turning points.

And it may help any Midwestern Democrat who plans to run for President, with Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar having a great opportunity, in the tradition of Hubert Humphrey and Walter Mondale, plus the image of Eugene McCarthy and Paul Wellstone also helping to give her candidacy a boost.

If the Democratic Presidential nominee is from the Midwest, it gives a boost that a candidate from the Atlantic Coast or Pacific Coast cannot give it, as the “Fly Over” States really will, again, as in the past, determine Presidential elections as well as control of Congress.

The Brett Kavanaugh Debacle Will Accelerate A “Blue Wave” And A “Pink Wave”, Which Will Transform American Politics

I am writing this entry after Dr. Christine Blasey Ford has gone before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday, September 27, 2018, and before Federal Circuit Court Judge Brett Kavanaugh has started his testimony on the charge of inappropriate sexual behavior toward Dr. Ford.

Dr. Ford was a very credible witness, but it will be unlikely to change any Republican votes in the Senate, which is hell bent on confirming Kavanaugh to a lifetime position on the high Court, despite many doubts about his honesty and veracity.

In any case, no matter what happens, it is clear that this is a turning point in American politics, and that this debacle will accelerate a “Blue Wave”, as well as a “Pink Wave”, both of which will transform our political system.

The Republican Party has tried, under Donald Trump, to maximize their support among white males, but now they have alienated intelligent, educated white women, and unless the Russians are able to collude again in 2018, and fix the results of the midterm elections, as they did in the Presidential Election of 2016, then the Democrats will have a massive midterm election victory, and it will carry over to the 2020 Presidential election and beyond.

The Republican Party, relying on the diminishing white male population, the South, the Midwest, the Great Plains, and rural America, are going to see much of the Midwest give up on the Republicans, for many reasons, but misogyny is one of those factors.

This is indeed a major turning point in American history, and will seen as such in retrospect.

The vast majority of the American people are sick to death of misogyny, racism, nativism, and the hatred of white supremacists and their ally, Donald Trump!

13 Democratic Women Senate Candidates, 11 Running For Reelection, And 2 New Candidates Competing in Arizona And Nevada In 2018 Midterms

In 2018, the US Senate has 23 women serving in the body, including 17 Democrats and 6 Republicans.

11 of the 17 Democratic women face reelection challenges in November.

These include the following:

Dianne Feinstein of California
Mazie Hirono of Hawaii
Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts
Debbie Stabenow of Michigan
Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota
Tina Smith of Minnesota
Claire McCaskill of Missouri
Kirsten Gillibrand of New York
Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota
Maria Cantwell of Washington State
Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin

Additionally, two women are running for election to the Senate:

Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona
Jacky Rosen of Nevada

Also, Jenny Wilson is the Democratic nominee in Utah, competing against former 2012 Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney for the seat of retiring Orrin Hatch, but seen as having no real chance to overcome the well known Romney, much admired in Mormon dominated Utah.

At this point, six weeks before the midterm elections, all of the seated Democratic women Senators seem likely to be reelected, with the most contentious challenges being Claire McCaskill in Missouri and Heidi Heitkamp in North Dakota.

The odds on the two women running for election in Arizona and Nevada also look good at this point.

So the odds are heavy that there will be 25 women in the Senate in 2019, with 19 being Democrats and 6 Republicans.

And in the cases of Wisconsin and Arizona, the Republican challengers are women, so already we can add Arizona as a state which will have its first woman Senator. Additionally, Nebraska’s Republican woman Senator, Deb Fischer, has a Democratic opponent who is female, so that assures that seat will continue to have a woman as well.

Donald Trump’s Attack On Bob Woodward, The Master Journalist With 45 Years Of Excellence, Falls Flat

Donald Trump’s attack on journalist Bob Woodward, famous from Richard Nixon and the Watergate Scandal, and author of 18 best selling books over four and a half decades, falls flat.

Trump has been exposed for who he is, not only by Woodward, but also by the “Anonymous” op-ed in the New York Times; by Omarora Manigault Newman’s book; by the Michael Cohen guilty plea; the agreement of Trump Organization Treasurer Allen Weisselberg to cooperate; and now, most recently, by the Paul Manafort guilty plea.

The evidence of how dangerous and unhinged Trump is, plus his criminal activity of Russian collusion, obstruction of justice, abuse of power, and violation of the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution, is magnifying, and when, as seems likely, the Democratic Party gains control of at least the House of Representatives in November, clearly shown in all public opinion polls, action will be swift toward impeachment and potential resignation of the President.

Trump is flailing at his “enemies”, but the nation has become clearly disillusioned with Trump, and particularly so with women, minorities, the young, and suburban educated people.

Bob Woodward is one of the greatest journalists and authors of modern times, and his new book will stand the test of time and veracity, without any question.

Woodward helped by his journalism, along with Carl Bernstein, to bring down Richard Nixon, four and a half decades ago, and now Woodward, along with others, will help bring Donald Trump down, and accountable to the justice system.

Key Republicans To Defeat: Ted Cruz, Rick Scott, Marsha Blackburn For Senate, And Scott Walker For Governor

As the midterm elections get closer, this blogger sees four key Republicans that he hopes will be defeated, as he considers them the worst of the worst of all Republicans running for office.

In ranked order, the first would be Texas Senator Ted Cruz, who this blogger thought was more dangerous than even Donald Trump during the 2016 Presidential campaign. Cruz is a true monster, a very evil force, hated even by Republicans, due to his arrogance and cockiness and his despicable voting record. El Paso Congressman Beto O’Rourke is running a very close race against Cruz, and there are many who think that even “Red” Texas is ready to be flipped to the Democrats and O’Rourke, as part of a growing belief that Texas will be “Blue” in future years. Nothing would satisfy this blogger more than to see Cruz retired from the Senate.

Second on the list would be Florida Governor Rick Scott, leaving the Governorship, but running for the US Senate against Democrat Bill Nelson. Scott has been a horrible Governor, and should have been in federal prison for Medicare and Medicaid fraud, and his eight years as Florida Governor have been a horror, setting Florida back, and making Jeb Bush look far better by comparison. He has doubled his wealth despite a blind trust, and is outspending Nelson, but polls indicate the election is close, and this man should not be given a Senate seat, and the fact that he won two terms as Governor by very small margins gives hope that Nelson can pull it out, hopefully on the coattails of Democratic gubernatorial nominee Andrew Gillum.

Third on the list would be Wisconsin Republican Governor Scott Walker, who is after Scott the most disgraceful governor in the past eight years, doing great harm to the past progressive image of the state of the La Follettes, Gaylord Nelson, William Proxmire, and other reform oriented leaders that made Wisconsin a leader in reform. Walker is another arrogant, cocky leader who richly deserves being retired. The Democrats have nominated the State Superintendent of Instruction Tony Evers, and the race is close, based on public opinion polls.

Finally, on this short list is Tennessee Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn, giving up her certain House seat to run for an open Senate seat in Tennessee, created by the retirement of Senator Bob Corker. Blackburn is an obnoxious, insufferable person, as annoying as former Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann was in her years in the House of Representatives. Blackburn, however, has a tough competition in former Tennessee Governor Phil Bredesen, who is ahead of her by a good margin, and hopefully, Bredesen, extremely popular, will soundly defeat Marsha Blackburn.

If all four of these Republicans could be defeated, it would be as if one was in heaven, and right now, there is a good chance that all four will lose out, to the benefit of Texas, Florida, Wisconsin, Tennessee, and the nation at large. Additionally, any plans in the future for Cruz or Walker to run for President again, or for Scott to plan to do so, would be gone, if they lose reelection in the case of Cruz and Walker, or election for Scott.

Donald Trump Public Opinion Support Collapses Into Mid 30s: Projection Of Midterm Election Disaster Coming

A number of new public opinion polls demonstrate that support for Donald Trump has collapsed into the mid to low 30s, an all time low during his Presidency.

More people in polls want Special Counsel Robert Mueller to pursue the scandals around Donald Trump, and 60 percent do not think Donald Trump is honest.

Every indication is that there will be a massive and walloping repudiation of Donald Trump and the Republican Party, which has been willing to ignore, or often collaborate on preventing a full investigation, but the Justice Department under Jeff Sessions, as despicable as he is in so many ways, has refused to do anything regarding interference in the investigation.

So Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who appointed Robert Mueller, and FBI head Christopher Wray are moving ahead, and ignoring tweets by the President, and attacks by his congressional supporters.

A massive number of women, people of color, young people, and teachers are running for state and national office, particularly in the Democratic Party.

A “Blue Wave” seems clearly coming, with suburban educated women, people of color, young people, and college graduates ready to punish Trump and his party, and the Midwest, the heartland of the nation, seems to be turning against Donald Trump too.

But there could always be Russian collusion which distorts the results, and certainly, the Republican Party and Donald Trump have no interest in attempting to prevent such action, which shows how corrupt they are, wanting to hold on to power no matter what, to benefit the elite wealthy at the expense of the middle and working classes and the poor.