Thursday, February 21, 2013

2014 is 10 months away (I do have more interesting maths to share.).

In case you are not readying or hearing about the recent analysis of Nate Silver at FiveThirtyEight, he doesn't see an easy or obvious victorious run come 2014. 2014? You know, the next election...? You know, how we the United States has elections every 2 YEARS...? ...
...Okay, breathe. Yes, we do in fact vote every 2 years. I know, we just started a new Congressional session AND inaugurated the president. But, next year, 620 days from now, we are doing this again...Well, some of us are. We don't all really get involved, leaving older and more conservative people.

Which takes us back to Nate Silver. Looking at the data available and history, he is seeing real dangers coming in 2014. It is possible that the Senate could go to the Republicans. Not a sure thing. But they are in a real positions, if they pull themselves together this year, to put up an effort that could shift 6 or more seats in their favor. (Read Silver for the number crunching.)

Among the issues that most intensely threaten Democratic control in the Senate is that it's a midterm election. And on these occasions, we don't all get out, we don't all pay attention, and we don't all...bother caring.

2010 is a good example of what can happen, with shifts in power and momentum in Washington D.C. leading to Tea Party headaches and an imperiled health care reform. There are many factors that played into the election. Insane conservative anger and paranoia. Frustration with positions that the president and Democrats in Congress were taking. But, the results were that liberals were underrepresented at the polls. And we've seen the results with the likes of Senator Scott Brown, Governor Scott Walker, Governor Rick Snyder and Representative Allen West.

Now some of these people were ousted last year. But some are still around, and enacting harmful policies on the public. And the repercussions of 2010 still are hitting and hurting us. 2014 can't be allowed to go the same way.

So, yeah. 620 days to the next election. It's a long time, and too soon.

But you are needed. Your vote. Your interest. Your engagement in the process. We can't let conservatives drag government to a halt by taking both branches of Congress. We can't pretend the results of midterms don't hold weight. We can't let the Right Wing set the narrative for 2014 and 2016. We can't sit things out until the next presidential election.

It's not the most fun you'll ever have, but welcome to representative democracy.

Consider this your early alarm call. I know you'll be hitting the snooze and getting back to political slumber. But don't ignore it for too long, you don't want to be late. We are counting on you.

...You didn't find the Nate Silver math interesting enough to justify the title? ...Fine!

Hey kids! It's One Direction!

And here's Tom Lehrer for old fogies like me.

No comments: