And the pendulum swings the other way (a little)

Yesterday was an off year election / voting day in a number of places.

Last year, Democrats rather stupidly stayed home, out of frustration with the lack of progress by Obama.  This allowed a number of very important Republican victories, which that party decided was a mandate, even though many of the races they won were actually rather close.

Because of this “mandate”, the Republicans pushed for a number of policy changes, on a state and federal level.  In this, they were backed by the Tea Party, an extremist group with only one (maybe two) policy points – lower taxes.  (The second being that a brown person shouldn’t be president.)

Yesterday, however, the policies generated by that mandate started being rolled back.

  • Maine kept same day voter registration.  Republicans opposed this (and are generally in favor of vote limiting efforts) because they determined that people who register to vote the same day that they vote, tend to lean to the liberal side of things.  Other Republican voter restriction efforts are attempts to limit the votes of minorities.  In some places, the Justice Department is automatically fighting them, due to a history of voter suppression in those states; in other states, it will likely take an independent lawsuit to challenge them.
  • Arizona recalled the politician who brought “papers, please!” to the state.  Which will, hopefully, be the first step towards legislatively removing that law.
  • Ohio rolled back their anti-union law.  This will hopefully generate more interest in recalling Scott Walker of Wisconsin.
  • And Mississippi rejected a law that would have defined life as starting at conception, thus treating every miscarriage as a potential crime – something that the extreme Religious Right was pushing for, to the point where they were planning on using a win here to launch the same issue in four other states.
Now, if the Democrats can keep from being stupid in the next election, this might start being the “Land of the Free” again.
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