It is 77 days until the next U.S. congressional midterm election.
Optimistically, we’ve been referring to the election as the Blue Wave or Blue Tsunami, symbolizing people rising against the nationalistic movement and its Russian supporters who have pressed our republic to the brink of credibility.
Is that optimism realistic?
Seriously, what we need to take over the House of Representatives and the Senate is no small feat. Merely protesting, tweeting, cursing at the storm are not likely to bring about the changes we need to be able to put a damper on the radical right. Gerrymandered districts, drawn by Republican legislatures to create and protect Republican congressmen, require massive, liberal voter turnouts.
We must draw out those who have not been voting, and those who are undecided about which side to support. We must continue to encourage blue voters to bring new people to the polls this fall.
It’s commonly known that Hillary Clinton received 2,868,686 more votes in the 2016 presidential election than Donald Trump. However, did you realize 7,830,934 ballots were cast for other candidates? That’s more than 5.7 percent, including 749 votes, for example, for Princess Jacob, running on the Loyal Trustworthy Compassion party or label.
Worse is the fact 698,990 ballots were cast for write-ins. More than 1 of every 200 voters willingly threw away their vote, not even supporting one of the second- or third-tier candidates.
Worst, only 55.67 percent of America’s voting age population bothered showing up. That means 108 million people who could have voted … didn’t. (These numbers come from the Federal Election Commission.)
It is those non-voters who hold our future.
Sure, I pray that more conservatives will see that the current policies are slowly breaking the backs of almost all Americans, that money is being funneled up to the very richest and mostly staying there, that the world is a less safe place, that we are taking actions to further harm the environment. I even hope they will decide that people are worthy of saving just for being people, even if they’re different in how they look, sound, worship or love.
But what we need to concentrate on now is new voters, including those wonderfully strong voices of newly qualified, young voters.
Please join me. Do your own thing to build the Blue Wave.