Democrats make significant gains, as voters indicate an abandonment of Trumpism

Had former Enron lobbyist Ed Gillespie won Virginia’s gubernatorial race today, you can be certain that prospective Republican candidates everywhere would have taken notice and done their best to follow the same script… recreating themselves, as Gillespie did, in the image of Trump, talking nonsensically about hispanic gangs, confederate monuments, kneeling football players and sanctuary cities, instead of issues that really matter, like health care and the growing economic instability that American families are feeling. Fortunately, though, Gillespie appears to have been beaten handily by Virginia’s Democratic Lieutenant Governor Ralph Northam, who, as I understand it, is poised to win the race by a larger percentage than any Democratic candidate has won the state since 1985. While I’m hesitant to read too much into it, as I realize that things will continue to evolve between now and the midterm elections, today’s results, at least to me, demonstrate that Trumpism may finally be on the decline.

Trump, of course, is now trying to distance himself from Gillespie, saying that the long-time denizen of the Washington swamp hadn’t done enough to “embrace” the ideals that won him the White House, which is a baldfaced lie. The Truth is, Gillespie ran as Trump in what’s essentially a swing state, and he was handed his ass.

And, for what it’s worth, those four House races Trump refers to didn’t take place today, but this past summer, when Republicans picked up a congressional seats in special elections held in deep red states like Montana, Georgia, and South Carolina. Today, however, the outcome was different. Today, for the first time since Trump came to power, we saw signs that that his political philosophy might be losing its some of its power over the American people. And, more importantly, we saw evidence of a rising resistance, with more women and people of color winning races over Republican incumbents than perhaps ever before.

Not only did Northam win decisively in Virginia, but, in New Jersey, it looks as though the Democrats took back the Governor’s mansion, with U.S. Ambassador to Germany Phil Murphy projected to beat Republican Lieutenant Governor Kim Guadagno. And, not just that, but there’s a pretty good chance that, by the time all the votes are counted, the Democrats may have also taken control of the Virginia House of Delegates, where former TV news anchor Christ Hurst, whose girlfriend, as you may recall, was murdered on air last year, defeated a Republican incumbent, and transgender candidate Danica Roem beat a 13-term Republican incumbent who actually referred to himself Virginia’s “chief homophobe.”

That’s right, the people of Virginia replaced the author of their state’s proposed “bathroom bill,” with our nation’s first openly transgender politician… Let that sink in.

I know it’s premature to suggest that Trumpism is dead, but it’s a damn site weaker today than it was yesterday, and, one would hope, as a result, we’ll see fewer candidates adopting his demeanor, and fewer images like this (taken from one of Gillespie’s race-baiting ads), in the future.

There will certainly still be challenges to face, but, for right now, with Trump’s approval rating lower than that of any American president in modern history, and him freaking out and blaming others for the fact that Republicans are no longer winning by parroting his divisive talking points, I feel a tiny bit of optimism. Will today’s results be enough to make the Republicans in Congress finally turn on Trump? I doubt it. But I suspect we’ll see things begin to shift a bit in the coming days. And, if Trump fails to deliver on tax reform, I suspect he’ll find himself impeached, as Republicans attempt to salvage what they can over the remainder of the term with Pence.

Speaking of tax reform… It dawned on me today that the wealthy should really just leave it in the hands of god.

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62 Comments

  1. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    There is going to be a shift on a seismic scale but not in the direction you want. …I hear orthopedic boots worn on the right leg are all the rage in D.C. this season.

  2. Howard Beale
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    I’m sorry HW, but I don’t get your, I’m assuming, racist or xenophobic comment about orthopedic footwear above. I must have missed that Alex Jones performance or Breitbart propaganda piece. Care to elaborate?

  3. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 9:46 am | Permalink

    You assume racist or xenophobic! What does that say about you?

  4. Howard Beale
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 9:58 am | Permalink

    It says I’ve been reading your comments here and you defend this administration that is lead by a white supremacist and also uses xenophobia as a cudgel to stir up their base and further divide our country. Anyway, what shift do you see coming? What’s up with orthopedic boots?

  5. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 10:00 am | Permalink

    The fact that you think Trump is a white supremacist says a lot about you as well.

  6. M
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 10:00 am | Permalink

    It only took me a minute of looking to find this.

    “There is a buzz in the Alternative Media that the orthopedic boots worn by Hillary Clinton and John McCain may actually be ankle bracelets, worn to prevent them from fleeing the United States.”

    http://investmentwatchblog.com/are-hillarys-and-john-mccains-orthopedic-boots-actually-ankle-bracelets/

    Good work, Hyperbolic Slumlord.

  7. Tom Perriello by proxy
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 10:02 am | Permalink

    The last time I remember being this proud of Virginia was when we elected the first African American governor Doug Wilder.

    16 Republican men in the House of Delegates (nearly a quarter of their caucus), all of whom voted to block 400,000 Virginians from receiving health care, will be replaced in Richmond by a class that represents the diversity of our Commonwealth. The first transgender lawmaker. The first Asian-American woman. The first two Latina Delegates. And 11 women elected on a progressive platform of expanding Medicaid, investing in education, and protecting civil rights. This is Virginia.

    For only the second time after the Civil War, an African-American candidate was elected statewide. And Ralph Northam was just elected running on a $15/hr minimum wage, systematic criminal justice reform, an F Rating from the NRA, protecting reproductive rights, and debt free community college. This is the future.

    Virginians came together to reject the hateful policies of Donald Trump that Ed Gillespie put on the ballot this year. Ed Gillespie’s campaign pulled back the veil on the failed marriage of pro-corporate economics and white identity politics that have propped up the Republican party since Reagan and Buchanan forged the Southern Strategy. For the second time in just under a year, we saw Virginia reject hate and division in exchange for love and inclusion.

    I’d be lying if I said I shed no tears tonight knowing that my home state, which had been both the birthplace of American democracy and the birthplace of American slavery, will be seen by historians as the place where America’s commitment to pluralist democracy took its stand. To see the most diverse set of candidates in my lifetime elected alongside a governor who ran on the most progressive platform in modern history brought tears to my eyes and hope to my heart.

  8. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 10:05 am | Permalink

    Lotta fascinating shit going on in Saudi Arabia lately. Posting as Howard Beale is ironic to the MAX.

  9. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 10:09 am | Permalink

    “Good work, Hyperbolic Slumlord.”

    Can’t wait till you have to eat everything you ever said. You’ve had a nice steady diet of eating your own words for a while now and soon you are going to have to just CRAM it!

  10. anonymous
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    This post by Kyle Griffin‏ pretty much says it all:

    A N.J. Republican mocked the Women’s March online.

    32-year old Democrat Ashley Bennett was angered by the remark, challenged him in his re-election bid.

    She won.

  11. Kit
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    Speaking of the women’s march, consider this factoid. In Virginia, 8 of the 11 Democrats who unseated Republican men were women.

  12. Howard Beale
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    Keep up the good gaslighting, HW!

  13. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 10:41 am | Permalink

    How is it gaslighting? I have easily taken apart a whole bunch of shit on here with facts. I use facts and you respond with quips. Now here is a prediction: a whole lot of people are going down. The globalists are going to take a massive series of hits very soon.

  14. M
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 10:50 am | Permalink

    One of the best things about these wins in NJ and VA is that they make the prospect of a Republican constitutional convention less likely. In order to call one, they’d need two-thirds of the state legislatures, which wins in NJ and VA would have put them dangerously close to. So, for the time being, it looks like we don’t have to worry about the constitution being changed to outlaw abortioon, impose congressional term limits, reverse gay marriage, etc. There is still significant work to be done, but this is a very good thing.

  15. Gretchen F.
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    Will you be reporting on Bannon’s visit to Warren tonight, Mark?

    http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2017/11/08/warren-police-prepared-for-bannon-visit/

  16. Howard Beale
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 11:02 am | Permalink

    You’re asking me what my comment says about me rather than answering questions. Globalists? Come on, man. I appreciate your prediction. We’ll check in after the next few rounds of indictments drop and compare notes.

  17. Eel
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 11:08 am | Permalink

    Tell me more about these orthopedic boots, HW? Do you really think that Clinton is wearing a tether?

  18. Bob
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 11:21 am | Permalink

    Has anyone seen numbers for voter turnout? I have to believe in was an historic low. I’ve never seen fewer voters at my polling place. True, we only had 4 proposals on the ballet. All millage and tax increases which won easily. That’s in Saline, btw, which probably has a better track record for passing tax increases than any local town. Less Republican than we get credit for being.

    Anyway, my point is I think a lot of Republicans and voters in general stayed home for this off election. I’m not sure this is the big anti-Trump referendum the media is crowing about. Virginia was close and it’s increasingly a blue state anyway. New Jersey is coming off the incredibly corrupt Christie administration. Hardly great indicators of where things are really going. It’s all so personality driven anyway. Middle America hated Hillary and either stayed home as Dems, or turned out in drives as Republicans to vote against her. If we put up Hillary again or some equally lame candidate, Trump or likely Pence get reelected

  19. Jcp2
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 11:24 am | Permalink

    I’m not sure why you think you are “winning”. Let’s say the globalists “go down”. I’m sure there are a lot of people around here that would celebrate that. Maybe even a majority of the commentators here. But for whatever reason, I don’t see you openly espousing your views at work or in public. I don’t see you posting under your real name. I don’t see you not posting at all. Whatever happens, HW will be here at MM.com, being insufferably contrarian, because this is the only consequence free outlet for you to express your resentments of whatever, however you would like. And for that, I would like to thank Mark on your behalf for being gracious enough to allow you to do so.

  20. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    Eel, tell me what significance you think Tony Podesta stepping down from his lobbying firm on the day the sealed indictments were made public has?

    Howard, what do you mean come on? You don’t think they are globalists or what?

  21. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 11:27 am | Permalink

    Jcp2 is posting – call a fuckin’ whambulance!

  22. Kate
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 11:29 am | Permalink

    Don’t pay attention to HW. There are so many good headlines today.

    “In stunning Trump rebuke, Montana elects Liberian refugee as state’s first black mayor”

    “Ravi Bhalla wins Hoboken election, becomes N.J.’s first Sikh mayor”

    “Meet Andrea Jenkins, the first openly transgender black woman elected to public office in the U.S.”

    This is what the future looks like.

  23. Howard Beale
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    HW, Globalist is an anti-Semitic dog whistle term used by the alt-right.

  24. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

    Plenty of gentiles in the globalist ranks.

  25. maryd
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 1:33 pm | Permalink

    Basking in a few wins…next year more.

  26. Frosted Flakes
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

    Regardless of how the indictments and investigations pan out, i think, as a result of the investigations, at the end of all this, the general population is going to have a much better understanding of what people mean when they use the term “globalist”.

    “Dog whistle”, “gaslighting”, blah, blah, blah.

  27. Iron Lung
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

    “Globalist” is a slur directed at people who think that free trade and immigration are good things. Basically, anybody who isn’t a stupid protectionist and not afraid of brown people.

    I guess I’m a globalist, but it is hard to run away from the racist implications behind the word.

  28. Eel
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 3:03 pm | Permalink

    You didn’t answer my question, HW. Do you believe Clinton wears “orthopedic boots” to hide an electronic tether placed on her by federal authorities?

  29. Jean Henry
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 3:24 pm | Permalink

    Bob— turnout was at historic highs in Virginia and New Jersey. Ann Arbor also saw a spike in turn out relative to other off year elections. Hotly contested races boost turn out. For right now, theDems seem more energized. I suspect the inner squabbles on the left don’t register much with regular Dems, at least until they become entrenched by 30 years of misogynistic propaganda. It’s good to remember that neither internal politics nor social media moments, nor yard signs are predictive of outcomes.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2017/local/governor-turnout-analysis/?utm_term=.4652e3ad2368

  30. Jean Henry
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

    Iron Lung: What are the racist implications of the term globalist?

  31. Bike666
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

    Danica Roem provides vocals for the thrash metal band Cab Ride Home.

    https://noisey.vice.com/en_us/article/ev4gep/this-trans-metalhead-stepmom-is-making-a-historic-run-for-office-in-virginia

    Album here: https://cabridehome.bandcamp.com/album/crash-the-gate

  32. XXX
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

    Jean, have you read “The International Jew”?

  33. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 3:33 pm | Permalink

    “You didn’t answer my question, HW. Do you believe Clinton wears “orthopedic boots” to hide an electronic tether placed on her by federal authorities?”

    All I’m saying is they seem to be the fashion accessory of the week. So what do you think about Podesta stepping down under investigation on the day the indictments were announced?

  34. Anonymous
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

    What you said then: “There is going to be a shift on a seismic scale but not in the direction you want. …I hear orthopedic boots worn on the right leg are all the rage in D.C. this season.”

    What you say now: “All I’m saying is they seem to be the fashion accessory of the week.”

    Nice backtracking, but I’m not buying it. You try to deny it, but you’re a right wing conspiracy theorist, and you really think that HRC is being tracked by the Feds. Meanwhile, though, you refuse to believe Trump associates, who are actually pleading guilty to felonies, have actually done anything wrong.

  35. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    None of the people I am referring to are Jewish. It’s Clinton, McCain, the Podestas, Obama, the Bush’s, Saudi princes…people like that. Soros could be caught up in it but he was a traitor to the Hungarian Jews.

  36. Bob
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    Jean, if that’s true then there is reason for hope. Hopefully the imprisonment of the entire Trump/Kushner family doesn’t happen so quickly that the GOP has time to regroup.

  37. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    None of the people I am referring to are Jewish. It’s Clinton, McCain, the Podestas, Obama, the Bush’s, Saudi princes…people like that. Soros could be caught up in it but he was a traitor to the Hungarian Jews.

  38. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 3:56 pm | Permalink

    “Nice backtracking, but I’m not buying it. You try to deny it, but you’re a right wing conspiracy theorist, and you really think that HRC is being tracked by the Feds. Meanwhile, though, you refuse to believe Trump associates, who are actually pleading guilty to felonies, have actually done anything wrong.”

    Let’s see who is correct.

  39. Jcp2
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

    The truth will be found in a fake LARPing video, with false flags and ethnic traitors.

  40. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

    Vanguard America are traitors to all of us.

  41. Bob
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 5:51 pm | Permalink

    HW, no one has any idea what you are even trying to say at this point. Your posts are increasingly ridiculous. Like Coast To Coast AM radio, but with none of the fun.

  42. Jean Henry
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 6:34 pm | Permalink

    I was wrong about New Jersey. Apologies for that. The race in NJ showed the Dem ahead by 12 points. That’s the reason given for low turnout. https://www.google.com/amp/s/articles.nj.com/politics/index.ssf/2017/11/how_many_of_us_turned_out_to_vote_on_election_day.amp
    Maybe we should allow Richard Spenser to speak at UM as it seems white supremacists unite the Dems in common cause…
    (I actually support allowing him to speak and also support allowing lots of protest of his speech FWIW. That’s a change in position for me… it happens.)

    I know Dems have to be motivated to turn out and we have to turn out in larger numbers than GOP to win due to gerrymandering. One thing we on the left seem to agree on is a need for new exciting candidates with a truly Progressive inclusive, economic and social message. I wouldn’t mind some young blood either. The faster we can move past 2016 the better.

    The circle firing squad has a long history on the left. I think it makes us smarter about he issues and I think it shows we care to much to be in lockstep. A coalition representing a diversity of points of view is our strength, not our weakness. It makes us better at governance too. It does not make us better at implementing strategy however.

    Here’s to moving on with a wee bit of hope to hang our many hats on.

    XXX I have not read that and would be unlikely to, given the title. But good to know…

  43. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

    “HW, no one has any idea what you are even trying to say at this point. Your posts are increasingly ridiculous. Like Coast To Coast AM radio, but with none of the fun.”

    That’s only because you don’t pay attention.

  44. Bob
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

    My memory and attention span are short from all the chemtrails. I’m also busy watching for shadow people and getting 9/11 building 7 updates.

  45. Demetrius
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

    Finally some much-needed good news on the political front. Let’s hope this is just a down-payment on what we might expect to see in 2018.

  46. Lynne
    Posted November 8, 2017 at 7:49 pm | Permalink

    I am encouraged by the results. I too hope this means a major upset in 2018. We can vote our way out of this mess!!!

  47. Jean Henry
    Posted November 9, 2017 at 5:43 am | Permalink

    Meanwhile Trump tweeted this yesterday with a picture from last year:
    “Congratulations to all of the ”DEPLORABLES” and the millions of people who gave us a MASSIVE (304-227) Electoral College landslide victory!”

  48. Jean Henry
    Posted November 9, 2017 at 6:41 am | Permalink

    Contrary to the impression of many here, the Dems are developing a deep bench.

    https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/the-sheer-number-of-democrats-running-for-congress-is-a-good-sign-for-the-party/

  49. Jean Henry
    Posted November 9, 2017 at 6:44 am | Permalink

    Lastly this is worth a read (understanding the Nate Silver and co are excusing/backtracking on their utter failure to predict 2016) https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/the-fundamentals-favor-democrats-in-2018/

    “Finally, there’s perhaps an unhealthy obsession with the white working-class vote, and its potential to sway the 2018 midterms in favor of Republicans. This could be more of a concern for Democrats in 2020. But the midterm electorate is typically more educated and better off financially than the presidential-year one. Also, most of the pickup opportunities that analysts envision for Democrats are in wealthy or at least middle-class areas. On average, the 61 Republican-held Congressional districts that the Cook Political Report rates as competitive rank in the 65th percentile in educational attainment (as measured by the share of adults with at least a bachelor’s degree) and also the 65th percentile in median household income. Some of them are fairly white, and some aren’t — but almost none are both white and working-class.”

  50. Bob
    Posted November 9, 2017 at 7:52 am | Permalink

    Except Nate Silver was completely wrong about Trump.

  51. Jean Henry
    Posted November 9, 2017 at 8:06 am | Permalink

    I acknowledged that. So has pretty much everyone. Including Nate. And he wasn’t as far off in the numbers as many think; He was warped in his interpretation of the numbers. He blames that on bubble-think. Please read the links. Or don’t. I’m not impressed that your opinions are in any way malleable.

  52. From a conservative on Twitter
    Posted November 9, 2017 at 9:47 am | Permalink

    #Northam won b/c he moved CLOSER to @realDonaldTrump
    #Gillespie lost because he didn’t

  53. Iron Lung
    Posted November 9, 2017 at 10:01 am | Permalink

    “Iron Lung: What are the racist implications of the term globalist?”

    Make America White Again? I think it should be obvious.

  54. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 9, 2017 at 10:16 am | Permalink

    Take care of yourselves and loved ones in the coming days/weeks. It will be okay (more than okay!)

  55. Iron Lung
    Posted November 9, 2017 at 10:53 am | Permalink

    That sounds like a threat.

  56. Bob
    Posted November 9, 2017 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

    My core beliefs and opinions don’t flip flop based on what’s blowing in the wind via some link on a particular day, if that’s what you mean. You seem to place too much stock in pollsters like Silver while dismissing things like the presence of political signs in people’s yards. I’m no Nate Silver but I’m on the road a ton, much of it in rural Michigan. It was pretty obvious to me that Hillary was going to lose to Trump. I think I’m on the record with that. I got it more right than Nate did. I hear Democrats sounding way too confident since Tuesday. Never a good sign.

  57. Iron lung
    Posted November 9, 2017 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    Trump, like the African dictators he has so much in common with, will make himseld President for life.

    Democrats have no choice but to give up. They are finished.

  58. Jean Henry
    Posted November 9, 2017 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

    Iron Lung– I know many people believe globalism to be inherently predatory, colonialist and racist. I know fewer who see protectionism as racist. They distinguish protectionism from nationalism, especially white nationalism. So I was just clarifying your intent. (I’m inclined to agree with you, while not denying US over-reach and generally bad-action abroad.)

    Bob– I saw those yard signs too. Yard signs are not often predictive of outcome in elections. http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/victory_lab/2012/01/campaign_signs_do_they_work_.html They are more predictive of areas of self-segregation politically, where people feel community consensus on their political choices. My parents Obama and Hillary signs were shot at, so I get it. Polling data is still more reliable.

  59. Iron lung
    Posted November 9, 2017 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

    “Globalist” has taken on a new meaning sinve Trump entered office.

    Im surprised you havemt noticed

  60. Maria E. Huffman
    Posted November 9, 2017 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

    HW is a fortune teller!!! she/he has a crystal ball and knows all.

  61. Maria Huffman
    Posted November 9, 2017 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

    Hey, HW ..what’s your real name? For real. Who are you?

  62. Demetrius
    Posted November 12, 2017 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

    SNL had this pretty funny take on Tuesday’s results:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CBUxNeXgC70

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