The election is over. Now what?
Well, for one thing, we’ll all be getting less annoying junk mail and be seeing less annoying campaign ads. Actually, that’s pretty damn nice. So, hurray! At least we have that.
There’s been a lot of good news/bad news round-ups out there. Mostly, it seems the take-away from the midterm elections is that it’s a mixed-bag. There is no real “narrative” that can totally sew it up in a pretty little bag. There was a “Republican wave” in the House but Dems still control the Senate (well done, Nevada, for not totally letting the country down on that one). The “Mama Grizzlies” didn’t completely win or lose. There were some LGBT victories and losses. There were some pro-choice victories and losses.
See? Mixed bag.
Here’s what matters here at home:
- The really good news is that Nevadans managed to (narrowly) beat back extremism by giving Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid a victory. (Much to the horror of leaders at the RJ compound.) I would say “well done.” But it wasn’t well done at all. It was an ugly, brutal, despicable race that was hard-fought and barely won. I’m glad Harry won, but there’s still blood on the field.
- Unfortunately, Nevadans lost some ground on prochoice issues last night. Rep. Dina Titus lost to Joe Heck, who has a bad record on choice and so-called women’s issues. He was endorsed by the Susan B. Anthony group and while in the state legislature he voted against coverage of the HPV vaccine, which is shown to prevent certain forms of cervical cancer. So that sucks. And there was no good prochoice winner in the Senate race either. Even though Sharron Angle didn’t win, the mormon Reid is on the record as antichoice. We also seem to have gotten an antichoice governor in Brian Sandoval. (Unlike his father, Rory Reid was supported by Planned Parenthood, so that said something about his bona fides. Too bad he lost.) I say “seem to” because I can’t find anything on record about his views on the issue. But considering the purse strings behind him, I’d feel okay going out on a limb and presuming him to be antichoice. (Time will tell.) As usual, it doesn’t look good for reproductive justice in Nevada. Sigh.
- And let’s take a closer look at our new governor-elect Sandoval, shall we? As has been noted more than once, he is a very pretty man. And he is a great “candidate” guy. Not exactly sure what Sandoval is going to do about our state’s gaping $3 billion deficit. (That’s Billion. With a B.) He certainly has not offered even a taste of what his plans might be and the state legislature is set to convene in just a few months — aside from saying “no new taxes” and that he will continue $1 billion in tax cuts without cutting into social services. And he’ll veto a budget with new taxes. So…we’re looking at Gibbons, Jr.? No plan to dig us out of the hole and a complete cock-block to the Democrat-controlled legislature working to fix things. Yep, sounds familiar.
- Speaking of cock-blocking…or rather, not…we seem to have a penchant for brainless, beautifully coiffed, Republican governors (and senators) who are essentially puppets of corporate interests. So, that’s annoying. Let’s just hope Sandoval doesn’t continue the other dimwit, Nevada Republican tradition: scandals.
- Perhaps the biggest story of the midterms wasn’t one that got much attention at all: redistricting. It might not be as death-match exciting as the Reid/Angle war, but redistricting is a big, no make that, huge deal! Since last night’s elections put more Republicans in governor’s seats than Democrats, that will mean that many strongly Democratic districts may be getting tweaked as redistricting starts to happen based on the new census. These new district lines will have an effect on EVERY RACE from federal all the way down to puny local seats. This means that so-called “safe” districts for Democrats like Rep. Shelley Berkley (who easily won last night) might get re-drawn to be more challenging. This is bad news for progressives. Period.