2017 American Elections

The American Government is a complex machine which most people only really think about in four year presidential intervals. This isn’t 100% accurate. Lots of gubernatorial positions turn over on Presidential off years due to unforeseen circumstances, and there are other positions which have different terms than the President. Early November this year, one year after Donald Trump’s successful election, saw a string of these elections take place. New Governors were elected in Virginia and New Jersey, with other smaller positions being filled around the country.

After the Presidential election last year the Democratic Party felt exhausted and defeated. Hillary Clinton, the DNC chosen candidate, had earned more votes than her rival but was still not going to be the President. A wave of fear gripped Democrats across the nation, and the phrase “How to Move to Canada” became the second most searched thing on Google for a few hours.

Rather than spiral out of control though it seems like the Democratic Party has licked their wounds and come back stronger than ever. The Virginia House of Delegates had ridden a “Blue Tide” this year as the election swung the house from being a vast majority Republican to being split right down the middle. At the time of this writing there is still no definite answer to whether the house will be Red, Blue, or have a purple split in the centre, but regardless this is a huge momentum shift for the Democratic Party and mindset.

One personal win sticks out as being vastly influential. Danica Roem, a transgender woman, defeated the Republican incumbent Robert Marshall for a House of Representatives in Virginia. This is a huge win as Marshall is a complete conservative and self-declared homophobe. He refused to debate Ms. Roem and referred to her as a man. He was also the Representative that introduced the controversial “Bathroom Bill” to the House of Representatives last year. LGBT people all across the United States have celebrated Roem’s victory.

These elections also showed signs of a newly energized electorate. Exit polls for the Virginia gubernatorial race showed that the turnout at the polls was the highest it has been in over twenty years. Keeping in mind that President Trump deeply wanted his candidate to win here, the President tweeted multiple times endorsing Gillespie before distancing himself after the loss, this is a reassuring sign for the left. The people are sick of Trumpism and are mobilizing to stop its spread.

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