The Midterms & Shape Of Things To Come
By: Keith Haymes | November 13, 2022
The nation has spoken. Reminding us, it is always a good time to remain positive, and seek to rise above the doubt, in our own lives, and our approach to political engagement. And this was shown again through the lens of the 2022 midterm voters, where the forecast was looming as cloudy, but the outcome was ultimately reassuring.
The power of the people resonated last night as Catherine Cortez Masto of Nevada tipped the delicate balance of the Senate back to the Democrats 50–49, with the Reverend Warnock vs. Herschel Walker runoff (and the count for twenty House seats) still underway. Noticeably, there were eighteen candidates endorsed by the previous administration who lost Senate, House and Governor races, signaling that there is a new governing day upon us.
Not that the midterms were all-Dem, but the spirit of wellness is alive with hope, and it seems the consortium of deniers is gradually being overcome. There was another bold attempt to re-draw electoral ground rules and boundaries, and that will continue, but the steady emergence of those on the progressive side of fairness and inclusion were not dissuaded. It seemingly registered with many that gas price fluctuations can rise and fall daily, but authoritarianism could be endless.
Several awful or galvanizing events played a key role in summoning midterm voter turnout, not the least of which were: a televised violent insurrection, a blatant overruling of constitutional protections concerning reproductive rights per a callous Dobbs decision, that pledged further privacy erosions, and a continuum of mass shootings targeting the innocent in schools, grocery stores and other public places. This, while a January 6th House committee brought forth a compelling national presentation with Republican witnesses, the rants ensued, officials withheld and deleted evidence, and valiant officers were commended for taking a bear-spray beating, and yet holding the line.
Correctly recognizing what was most important, the Democratic platform remained on-message. The issues deemed paramount were appropriately emphasized, including: democracy over fascism, a woman’s right to choose, reasonable gun safety, climate concerns, and having actual policies in place as opposed to mere negative snarking. And, with that, there was an intentional re-embrace of the great American Experiment, which shunned those who would perhaps opt to burn it all down.
The resulting takeaway is that the course of our future is being determined by everyday people who care, and vote. And these people include women, families, historically-underrepresented people of color, and a younger demographic with invigorated energy, determined to advance their safety and opportunity, and play a key role in their own futures. The next two years will tell us far more about the breadth and continuation of our recovery, but based upon this resounding show of unity, we have every reason to feel extremely encouraged.
Keith Haymes is a contributing op-ed author, civil rights, wrongful death and media law attorney in his 40th year of practice, based in Miami, Florida.
© Keith Haymes 2022