Thoughts on my the top of the ballot, some other elections, and a surprising endorsement for a Lucas County, OH, judge.
Was up to vote early with Allison, who had to leave for work by 7. No lines, but every booth full. Somehow the perfect number of people. Evanston isn’t exactly a battleground. I’m guessing Hillary will end up with about 90% of the city. There was some controversey last week when a Trump supporter had his “Trump/Pence” sign set on fire.
And that’s wrong, but it really isn’t very wrong. This didn’t happen with other candidates. And that’s one of the things that struck me when looking over the ballot. Seeing his name at the top filled me with an almost violent anger. It was sickening that this man, this violent, racist, demagogic monster, this openly misogynist moron, this uneducated ignorant clown, this huckster, this contemptuous authoritarian, this conman, this grifter, this fraud, had his name on the ballot for President of the United States. It was revolting and offending to see.
And it would have offended me as a Republican. Maybe more. This is the spot where you had Mitt Romney and John McCain. Where you had George H.W. Bush, and even his son, who at least had the personal relationship with Christ that Republicans love. Where you had Ronald Reagan. And now this guy?
Don’t get me wrong: it’s almost expected. It’s the end result of a long process. And maybe not even the end result. It can always get worse, after all. But still, it seems like something to think about. I wonder, irrationally, if that’ll make a difference today. Seeing his name up there will make some people think, Donald Trump? President? Like for real? I thought the same thing at the convention, though, so grain of salt (though his numbers did plummet right after).
On the flip side, I was surprisingly moved to vote for the first female president. In all the hate, it was easy to forget just how remarkable a thing this is. And not just any female: someone who has faced and overcome more misogynistic hatred than perhaps anyone in history. No one has been so public for so long in such a bitter age. Catherine and Victoria certainly reigned long, and had terrible sexist and sexual rumors about them, but they weren’t around for Rush, twitter, and Breitbart. That she could stand up to all this, and come out (goddamit, please?) victorious–especially facing the living embodiment of crude and overbearing sexism–is nothing short of inspiring.
Downballot: Tammy Duckworth, of course. I like Mark Kirk, but he is a Republican who will enact a Republican agenda. Susan Mendoza for Comptroller, in a weirdly important and hotly contested race, which is sort of deciding if Illinois is going to fight to be a decent state or if we are going to be more Raunerized (which is to say, Wisconsinized).
And finally, there was a ballot measure about ensuring money earmarked for roads only goes to roads. I’m all about infrastructure spending, and think it is a sign of a fatal stupidity that those funds are always the first ones stolen from, but think it is shortsighted nonsense to designate money, by law, for one thing. It robs flexibility, and then the secondary impact is that if revenue is lowered, the things that aren’t protected by law (like the poor) get the short end. It’s why the Balanced Budget Amendment is sneakily one of the most malicious ideas in American politics, as well as the dumbest.
Also, if you happen to live in Lucas County, you should vote for Lindsay Navarre for Judge. Lindsay is an old friend from college, and it one of the smartest and most-dedicated people I’ve ever known. Her commitment to justice is matched only by her sense of fairness.