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2018 U.S. Mid-term Elections

2018 Mid-term Election Politics U.S. Elections

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#1
caltrek

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With the close of 2018 approaching, the mid-term elections of this year are beginning to fade into history.  In the News and Discussion forum, election results were covered in real time news stories. Here is a link to that thread:

 

https://www.futureti...-result-thread/

 

At this writing, there are still unresolved issues relating to the 9th Congressional District in North Carolina and the 2nd Congressional District in Maine. News stories related to the resolution of those issues should continue to be posted in that thread. 

 

This thread will focus on the ongoing analysis of the election results.  Not so much what were the results, but the why of how of those results. 

 

First up:

 

Labor's Impact

 

https://ourfuture.or...women-democrats

 

Introduction:

(Our Future) In his victory speech on election night, U.S. Rep. Conor Lamb said he would always remember the union members who helped him defeat two Republican incumbents in one year.

 

“Side by side with us at each step of the way were men and women of organized labor. . .  I will never forget that. I will never forget that. Thank you,” he told a cheering crowd overflowing a ballroom at the Hilton DoubleTree, 20 miles north of Pittsburgh.

 

In his first contest last spring, in a district that went for President Donald Trump by nearly 20 points and that had elected a Republican to the House for 15 years, Lamb received massive support in the form of door-knocking and phone banking from members of the labor union I lead, the United Steelworkers, and from several others, including the Service Employees International Union.

 

Lamb recalled that help when he listed his priorities on his website. They include, he wrote, “protecting Social Security and Medicare as well as fighting for good jobs and strong unions.” And he spoke with pride of his connection to labor at his victory party, “These unions have fought for decades for wages, benefits, working conditions, basic dignity and social justice. . . . You have brought me into your ranks to fight with you. . . I am proud to be right there with you.”

 

…In this election cycle, union workers knocked on more than 2.3 million doors and distributed 5 million fliers at more than 4,600 worksites to support labor-endorsed candidates. Many of them won. That includes more than 740 union members elected to political offices across the country, from Jacky Rosen for Nevada’s U.S. Senate seat to Gretchen Whitmer and Tim Walz for governor’s offices in Michigan and Minnesota. Like Conor Lamb, these newly elected officials can be expected to honor their labor roots.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#2
caltrek

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Mia Love's ominous warning for the GOP

 

https://theweek.com/...ous-warning-gop

 

Extracted Introduction:

(The Week) Rep. Mia Love (R-Utah), the GOP's first African-American woman in Congress, conceded defeat in an incredibly close re-election campaign .... But in her concession speech, she delivered a bracing post-midterm analysis of the Republican Party's shrinking footprint, calling on President Trump and the GOP to pay more attention to minority voters, or risk more defeats like hers in the future. Republicans would be wise to heed her advice.

 

Love's loss in Utah's 4th Congressional District came as a surprise to the GOP. The Cook Index gives Republicans a 13-point registration advantage in the district, although it has been closely contested in three of the past four election cycles. Love herself lost in 2012 by fewer than 800 votes on her first try. Two years later, she won by a little more than 4,000 votes for her first term in Congress, and then triumphed by a 12-point margin for a second term in 2016. Trump carried the district on the same ballot by seven points, leading most to believe that Love — who has never closely associated herself with Trump — would succeed in holding the seat for the GOP in the 2018 midterms.

 

When it became apparent that Love was in trouble, Trump put the blame on her arms-length treatment of him. "Mia Love gave me no love and she lost," Trump said in a post-election press conference. "Too bad. Sorry about that, Mia."

 

Love declared herself bemused by Trump's reproach. "What did he have to gain," Love asked, "by saying such a thing about a fellow Republican?" …Trump wanted to underscore his conviction that the midterms were not a failing on his part but the product of a lack of cohesion among Republican politicians. Had incumbents such as Love, Carlos Curbelo (Fla.), Barbara Comstock (Va.), and others rallied to Trump's side, the president argued, the GOP could have retained the House.

 

Trump's argument…misreads what happened in the midterms. Democrats won because they turned out in droves, exceeding the enthusiasm demonstrated by Republicans. This large Democratic turnout shifted key Trump states — Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania — back to blue status, and had a major impact in swing suburban districts like Utah's 4th especially, but not exclusively.

 


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#3
caltrek

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Did Teacher Walkouts Change Our Politics?

 

https://ourfuture.or...in-the-midterms

 

Introduction:

(Our Future) Even before the votes from the recent midterm elections were completely counted  – a process that took nearly two weeks in many races – numerous prominent news outlets were quick to report on the supposed failure of the “education wave,” those school teachers and other educators who ran for office up and down ballots across the country. One report that received particularly widespread circulation, by Associated Press, carried the headline “Tough lessons: Teachers fall short in midterm races.” Another for U.S. News & World Report said, “Poor Marks for Teachers in Midterms.” Clever, huh.

 

Indeed, numerous news outlets seemed eager to reinforce a narrative that despite an unprecedented number of teachers and public school advocates running for political office, “underwhelming voter interest in education” and a “red wall” of Republican opposition were just too much to overcome.

 

An exception to this shallow reporting was a piece by The Guardian that reported “teachers made huge gains in the midterm elections.”

 

But the article quotes union leaders in walkout states Oklahoma and Arizona, as well as president of national American Federation of Teachers Randi Weingarten, even though unions did not lead the teacher walkouts.

 

To get a better sense of the real impact teacher walkouts had on the midterms, I called on frontline organizers and public-school advocates in states where there was substantial documentation that education would have a big impact on election results. What I found was overwhelming consensus that yes, teacher walkouts this spring had a significant impact on the midterm elections and will continue to reverberate in politics and policy making.

The rest of the article includes a focused look at West Virginia, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Arizona, and Wisconsin.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#4
caltrek

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Meet the ‘Exvangelicals’: Young Christians are fleeing the church for cozying up to Trump

 

https://www.alternet...h-cozying-trump

 

Introduction:

(Alternet) As hardcore Christian evangelical leaders continue to embrace President Donald Trump, younger churchgoers are having a harder time reconciling the words of the Bible with less-than-Christian actions of the Republican Party which supports him.

 

According to Newsweek, exhortations from the pulpits to support Republican positions on war and immigration are causing an exodus of some of the same young Christian voters who helped Trump get elected.

 

As Blake Chastain, 35, who left the church and created the podcast “Exvangelical” explained his departure: “Conservative Christianity was at odds with the teachings in the Bible.”

 

The reports states that the flood of young believers who are abandoning the church could be disastrous for Republicans who have become used to depending upon conservative Christian leaders to turn out votes for them.

 

In fact, data reveals that the effects of abandonment likely impacted the 2018 midterms.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#5
caltrek

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The Hidden Money Funding the Midterms

 

https://www.propubli...ng-the-midterms

 

Introduction:

(ProPublica) Allies of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell used a blind spot in campaign finance laws to undercut a candidate from their own party this year — and their fingerprints remained hidden until the primary was already over.

 

Super PACs, which can raise and spend unlimited sums of money in elections, are supposed to regularly disclose their funders. But in the case of Mountain Families PAC, Republicans managed to spend $1.3 million against Don Blankenship, a mustachioed former coal baron who was a wild-card candidate for a must-win West Virginia Senate seat, in May without revealing who was supplying the cash.

  

The move worked like this: Start a new super PAC after a deadline for reporting donors and expenses, then raise and spend money before the next report is due. Timed right, a super PAC might get a month or more undercover before being required to reveal its donors. And if a super PAC launches right before the election, voters won’t know who’s funding it until after they go to the polls.

 

The strategy — which is legal — is proving increasingly popular among Democrats and Republicans. The amount of super PAC spending during the 2016 congressional primaries in which the first donor disclosure occurred after the primary election totaled $9 million. That figure increased to more than $15.6 million during the 2018 congressional primaries and special elections.

 

Backers of Mountain Families PAC didn’t respond to a request for comment. It is one of 63 super PACs this election cycle that have managed to spend money to influence races and postpone telling voters who funded them, according to an analysis by Politico and ProPublica of Federal Election Commission data.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#6
caltrek

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In addition to the thread I linked in the opening post, there were other threads concerning to the subject elections:

 

 

https://www.futureti...enate-election/

 

https://www.futureti...tives-election/


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#7
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Democratic Texting Platform Hustle Lays Off Big Chunk of Staff

 

https://techcrunch.c...hustle-layoffs/

 

Introduction:

(TechCrunch) The company behind a texting platform that powered more than 1,300 Democratic campaigns has slashed its staff in the lull following the 2018 midterms. Hustle co-founder and CEO Roddy Lindsay, a former Facebook engineer, disclosed the layoffs in a recent Medium post, apologizing for the choices that led up to the decision to “right-size” Hustle’s team.

 

“… While we have an exciting set of initial commercial customers using Hustle  successfully, it was premature to aggressively expand our team — we need the time to do the research with our customers and build the right product to support industries beyond politics and non-profits,” Lindsay wrote in the layoff announcement. “I made the rookie misstep of not watching our growth closely enough, and we ended up overbuilding our team beyond our means.”

 

Bloomberg reports that Hustle’s aggressive layoffs reduced its team by 35 percent. TechCrunch has reached out to Hustle to confirm those numbers.

 

It sounds like Hustle scaled up considerably in the lead-up to midterms, undertaking “an enormous operational challenge” that ultimately could not be sustained after the political cycle died down. The company’s booming success and its post-race contraction serve as a cautionary tale for startups that hitch their wagon to the inherently boom and bust nature of political campaigning. To correct course, Hustle has brought in “strong finance leadership” and plans to chart a fiscally realistic path forward.

 

Hustle’s platform allows clients to mobilize and optimize texting campaigns that eschew mass texting templates. Within Hustle’s system, designated point people can manage and personalize texting campaigns, tracking progress in the platform as they go. A number of Democratic and progressive campaigns have leveraged Hustle for their causes, most notably the Bernie Sanders campaign in 2016. Notably, Hustle exclusively opens its platform to causes on the political left.

 


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls






Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: 2018 Mid-term Election, Politics, U.S. Elections

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