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Thu Mar 15, 2018, 05:08 PM

Reliably Blue States and the U.S. Senate [View all]

Subtitle: Why winning the popular vote or even the electoral vote in Presidential elections is not enough. Subtext: Why winning the votes of some whites who have some prejudices is still important. Reminder: We could never have passed Obamacare if the Democratic Coalition in the U.S. Senate didn't at one point have 60 members.

In 2008 President Obama won the electoral votes of 29 states. Between them they elect 58 U.S. Senators.
In 2012 President Obama won the electoral votes of 22 states. Between them they elect 44 U.S. Senators.
In 2016 Hillary Clinton won the electoral votes of 20 states. Between them they elect 40 U.S. Senators.

In all three elections the Democrat also won the District of Columbia which has no U.S. Senators.
In all three elections the Democrat running won the popular vote handily.

Control of the U.S. Senate is a critical part of governing on a national level, even if Democrats do win the White House. The importance of holding the Senate is magnified now far more so than it was even in 2008. That is because the nation has now been plunged into a period of unified Republican control of Congress - which has allowed Republicans to cause deep damage through their control of Congress including but not limited to stacking the courts with far right judges. It includes but is not not limited to their passing a massive tax bill that gives to the rich and steals from virtually everyone else while putting our government into an ever deepening fiscal hole that makes it essentially impossible to find the funds needed for a sane progressive agenda for America. A return to a status quo deadlock of the Federal Government now would still leave us worse off than we were in the last year of George W. Bush's Administration.

The ugly reality that so often gets ignored on this board is that, because of the way the U.S. Constitution is written, Democrats need to win a sizable portion of white voters, and in some states a near if not actual majority of them, in order to elect enough Democratic Senators in order to actually move on a national agenda that counters the Republicans and furthers causes dear to all of us here. Winning truly matters. Fighting for the right things is not enough when losing results in massive suffering. I say that knowing full well that most whites have real prejudices, whether they want them or not, and that some of us (I'm White) seem perfectly content to view the world through at least partially racist lenses.

I've stated this here before: I do not believe that the Democratic Party should alter a syllable of our national platform or of our Congressional agenda in order to appeal to, let alone appease, racist voters. That is non negotiable. I only take issue with those who say "fuck 'em" to everyone out there who voted Republican in the 2016 election. A number of the voters needed to allow Doug Jones to win his Senate seat from Alabama, and for Conor Lamb to win his Congressional seat from PA CD 18, voted for Trump in 2016. I see no purpose in making excuses for why they did so. I see a purpose in preventing them from doing so again, either for Trump or for Republicans in Congress who support Trump. I see a purpose in winning more elections, because I see the purpose of taking power away from Republicans.

If we can engage some of those voters around some issues which we proudly fight for - because it happens to be the right thing to do to fight for those issues - and they end up voting Democratic as a result, I'll take those votes. I'll take those votes while continuing to work through the Democratic Party to end all racial injustice in America. Hopefully we can convert some of those fore mentioned voters on that front also, but in the meantime we have work to do in Congress for all Americans, and to do so we must win back control of our government.

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Reply Reliably Blue States and the U.S. Senate [View all]
Tom Rinaldo Mar 15 OP
Bradshaw3 Mar 15 #1
Tom Rinaldo Mar 15 #3
leftstreet Mar 15 #2
Tom Rinaldo Mar 15 #4