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Posts Tagged ‘2020 Census’

To sin by silence when they should protest, makes cowards of human beings.
  —  Abraham Lincoln
[It is vitally important to continue resisting the programs of President Trump and the Republican Senate.  It is equally important to support the Democratic control of the House of Representatives.  Remember, if there is no clear election in the Electoral College in 2020, the decision of who will be the next President will fall to the House of Representatives.  I believe this is what the Republicans were actually hoping for when the “Anyone but Trump” Republican movement went silent.  They didn’t have to get Trump elected President in the popular vote.  The Republicans only had to tie up the Electoral College.  In which case, Paul Ryan most probably would have been “elected” President.  One: he was the Republican VP nominee in the prior election (2012).  Normally, when the ticket fails, the VP choice is the next one in line to be put forward.  And, two: Ryan was the Speaker of the House, which means he was already the “prime” person to be elevated from the House to the Oval Office.  When (in 2016) Florida went to the Republicans and the House was retained by the Republicans, they only needed one of the Rust Belt states and South Carolina to stop Clinton, irrespective of her national popular vote count.  The same conditions will be true in 2020, if the Republicans can somehow flip the House back to their control.
Added to that (final control of the Presidential election), the House also has primary responsibility for seat reapportionment after the 2020 census.  If Republicans flip control back (to themselves) they will use even more gerrymandering to reduce the value of the popular vote.  (Of course, this presumes the Republicans retain control of the majority of the State Houses, too.  Since they control 32 States to the Dems 14, it seems likely they will.)  Don’t misinterpret me.  The Democratic Party will also gerrymander, but they “generally” do so to increase the value of the popular vote.  They (the Democrats) “only” do this because the demographics of the future favor the the Democratic Party.  Basically, older (mostly white male) voters are dying and the younger voters (across all genders, ethnic breakdown, income and education levels) replacing them on the voting roles are trending to the Democratic Party.  And without newer ideas, the Conservative / Republican Party will continue to wither away.  IMHO: It is only “Dark Money” and the Citizens United decision which have propped the Republican Party up this far.
A word to the wise should suffice…   Stay engaged locally.   #Resist  —  KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2018 More Executive Time For #DumbDonald
2017 Watched The Inauguration
Two Geniuses
2016 Come Dance And Laugh With Me
2015 Looks Good To Me
2014 Desire For The Sea
2013 The Fierce Urgency Of NOW
Happy Inauguration Day!
2012 One Path
Sorrow And Joy
The Seven Year View
2011 Emergent Practicality

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My mechanic told me “I couldn’t fix your brakes, so I made your horn louder.”
  —  Steven Wright
[Without any significant accomplishments (which the majority of Americans actually supported) during his first two years as President, #IncompetentDonald chose to use the mid-term elections campaign to spread hate and fear.  The results were a (not surprising) repudiation of the President where the number of Americans voting against Republicans increased from three million votes (Trump vs. Hilary popular vote loss count) to over six million (nationwide total – see image below) in the House and twelve million (nationwide total) in the Senate.  It is only the fact that Republicans outnumber Democrats in States with smaller populations which has allowed them to retain control of the Senate.  In the United States, each State gets two Senators irrespective of the State’s population.  The House, on the other hand, gets Districts assigned based on populations with a minimum of one.  Some of the States with smaller populations (Alaska, Delaware, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont and Wyoming) only have one Representative (called “at large”) with their “District” being the entire State.  The Senate is “inherently” less “democratic” for the nation by design.  Additionally, by only having one-third of its members up for re-election in any given election, it is also “inherently” more moderating (i.e. “conservative”) in representing the overall population of both the State and the nation.  (The Senate is the “brake” in this metaphor.)  Because the entire House of Representatives is up for re-election each election period, the House tends to reflect the political swings in the electorate more quickly and more radically – direction and degree – when the country is shouting “Stop” or “Speed-up”.  (The House is the “horn”.)

Image showing Democratic nationwide vote difference in 2018

Democratic nationwide vote difference in 2018

Of course, the comparison of vote totals above – numbers for President, House and Senate – are comparing apples to oranges to bananas.  And / but, they also do NOT take into account the significant gerrymandering done as of the 2010 census, which heavily tilted the House Districts in favor of the Republicans.  This makes the wins by the Democrats even MORE impressive!  It remains to be seen if those changes will remain when we go back into a Presidential turnout.  It also highlights the importance of Democrats working at the State level to regain control of as many State governorships and legislatures as possible heading into the next (2020) census and subsequent House redistricting.  The number of seats is controlled at the Federal level, but the actual redrawing of the Districts is done by the individual States.
This last part, the census and the redistricting is why it is vitally important for the electorate (the voters) to stay active during the run-up to 2020 (the census) and then immediately after through 2022, when the redistricting will normally occur.  In other words, you (voters seeking to make a progressive difference) can’t go to sleep between now and 2022 or the Republicans can continue and increase their relative positions through 2032.   By the way, the gerrymander is not (by any means) unique to the Republicans.  The Democrats have also used it to protect their seats.  The difference is the modern day use of computers to track voters and then specifically target the isolation of opposition voters to maximize their count while minimizing their effect.  For example, one State (Pennsylvania) had 51% of the vote (Democrats), but seated 5 out of 18 Districts (28% of the House seats) in 2012 because Republicans controlled the State legislature.  So, a word to the wise…  If you want to keep the house after 2020, stay awake and stay active!
Finally, for an excellent explanation of Gerrymandering, please read the linked article:  “This is the best explanation of gerrymandering you will ever see“, which appeared in the Washington Post a few years back.  I re-read it every year to remind myself of what is at stake.  —  KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2017 He Says, It Says
2016 Marriage Advice
2015 To James (and ‘Tasha)
2014 Ssshhush, You Are Not Alone
2013 So I Chose Living…
2012 For However Short A Time…
2011 Take A Deep Breath And Continue (Or Not)
2010 Tootsie-Roll Day

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So, was there a “BLUE” wave?  You decide…

Image of chart showing elections where Democrats made gains in the House of Representatives

Elections since 1976 where Democrats have gained seats in the House of Representatives

Of course, the image (above) ONLY shows the years with “net” gains – and this year is the largest numeric increase for the Democrats since 1976.  The chart does not show the years 1980, 1984, 1992, 2002, 2004, 2010, 2014, and 2016 where the Democrats had net losses nor the magnitude of those losses.  (Pretty significant losses in 1994 and 2010.)

Image of Popular Vote Last 6 of 7 Presidential Elections

Trends for Republicans to worry about…

What should be more troubling to the Republicans is that the second image (just above) shows in Presidential elections, the Democratic candidate received the majority of the “popular” vote in six of the last seven elections.  In 2000, George W. Bush became president (like Trump in 2016) because of the Electoral College, NOT because he received the majority of the individual votes by Americans.  And, in “W’s” case, Republicans won only because the Supreme Court stopped the recount in Florida while “W” had the lead.
It is (IMHO) extremely unlikely there will be any Constitutional change to the Electoral College system and the House (i.e. the States) is sooooo gerrymandered it is unlikely the moneyed party (the Republicans) will lose many of the plains and mid-west States without another major financial / economic collapse (like at the end of Bush’s term: 2008).  The “hope” of a demographics shift is “always” there as a forecast on the horizon, but it never seems to be the super-storm which reaches shore.  Finally, I have read projections of upwards of ten House seats being “flipped” due to the 2020 census.  So having (and holding) governorships and state houses coming out of 2020 will be critical for the next decade’s elections, too.
The work is just beginning folks…  Take a deep breath and then get ready to get back to the grindstone.  Democracy still has some catching up to do in this Republic.
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On This Day In:
2017 The Promise At Risk
2016 Or As Will Come In Time
2015 It Is Another Beautiful Day At The Red Pony Bar And Continual Soiree…
2014 Days And Years
2013 Currency And Transport
2012 Something Which Did Not Exist Before
2011 True Magic

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