Contrary to the so-called conventional wisdom of the “liberal” mainstream media, the U.S. is a center left country. For years, polls show that a majority of Americans support universal health coverage, higher taxes on the wealthy, campaign finance reform, gun safety reform, action on climate change and abortion rights. The current U.S. political system — despite it’s many faults — still has the capacity to reflect the will of the majority if Democrats turn out and vote.
When voter turnout was high in 2008, 2012 and 2018, the Democrats won big. On the other hand when Democrats were complacent or apathetic in 2000, 2010, 2014 and 2016, disaster struck. We are in the current predicament now due to the fact the voter turnout was poor in the election cycles in which the Republicans won.
We need a big Democratic turnout this year because 2020 could be the last fair election in the history of the U.S. if the Republicans win big. In the unlikely event the GOP wins this year, they will re-write the rules to insure that they can never lose again.
2020 is a huge election cycle because state legislatures will be re-drawing district lines next year. If the GOP wins, the Democrats will be kept out of power for years by GOP extreme gerrymandering.
The 2010 election results provides an example of how crucial the state level elections are this year. In the first mid-term cycle of the Obama presidency, the GOP made big gains at all levels — including at the state level. The Republican re-drew the lines in the hopes of creating a permanent GOP majority in the U.S. House of Representative.
Due to failed Trump presidency, those hopes were dashed. In 2018, the Democrats picked up 41 seats in the U.S. House — their best showing since 1974. However, in the absence of the 2010 lines, the Democrats probably would have picked up 65 House seats. It took the worst president in U.S. history to prevent the GOP from keeping control of the House for the foreseeable future.
A Republican victory next month wouldn’t only lead to permanent GOP control of the House, it would also lead to permanent GOP control of the federal courts. Already, the GOP controls the crucial circuit courts of appeals is now on the verge of a 6–3 majority on the U.S. Supreme Court.
A Trump and GOP victory would lead to a 7–2 “conservative” majority on the Supreme Court. A radicalized Supreme Court would act as a super legislature for the GOP and would enact the most unpopular parts of the GOP agenda. As a starting point, the Affordable Care Act, the Voting Rights Act and Roe v. Wade would all be overturned. In addition, the last few remaining campaign finance laws would be gone.
An extreme GOP majority could even go farther than that. Judge Amy Coney Barrett wouldn’t say whether or not Social Security or Medicare are constitutional. Quite frankly, it wouldn’t surprise me if a radical majority on the Supreme Court threw out the progressive reforms of the 20th century.
There is a historical precedent for conservative judicial activism on the Supreme Court. Between 1870 and 1936, the Supreme Court invalidated civil rights laws, the minimum wage, the federal income tax and most of Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal. Don’t think they can’t do it again!
A country with extreme gerrymandering, no Voting Rights Act and no restrictions on the ability of the wealthy to contribute to campaigns would lead to a permanent GOP majority. There would still be elections and free speech but the GOP would always win.
I’m confident we will see a blue wave on November 3 but I’m taking nothing for granted. This is the most important election of our lifetimes. It’s democracy v. minority rule and autocracy. This election is about your future, your right to healthcare, a genuine democracy and where science matters. You can be the difference. Vote! Vote! Vote!