The Big Progressive Wins on Election Night, Midterms 2018

Democrats were looking forward to a Blue Wave. Progressives were hoping for progressive candidates. Right-of-center? A redder political map.

Well, we can delve into that later on, but here’s what we got for the most part last night.

The Big Progressive Wins

First, a list. Next what we can expect policy-wise from the new Democratic U.S. House of Representatives.

  1. Candidates outside the status quo:
    1. Jared Polis (D-CO) – the country’s first openly gay Governor
    2. Sharice Davids (D-KS) – the country’s first Native American, openly gay Congresswoman
    3. Deb Haaland (D-NM) – the country’s second Native American Congresswoman
    4. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) – the country’s first Somali-American, Muslim Congresswoman, a Somali refugee
    5. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) – the country’s second Muslim Congresswoman
    6. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) – the country’s youngest Congresswoman, at 29 years old
    7. Abby Finkenauer (D-IA) – the country’s second youngest Congresswoman, also 29
    8. Young Kim (R-CA) – the countries first Korean-American Congresswoman
    9. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) – Massachusetts’ first black Congresswoman
    10. Janet Mills (D-ME) – Maine’s first woman Governor
    11. Letitia James (D-NY) – New York’s first black woman Attorney General
  2. Progressive ballot measures that passed*:
    1. San Francisco, CA – raised taxes on big corporations to fund homeless services
    2. Florida – returns voting rights to over a million people that served time for felony charges
    3. Louisiana – requiring felony convictions to have a unanimous jury conviction ruling
    4. Massachusetts – an affirming transgender bathroom anti-discrimination protection
    5. New Hampshire – affirms freedom from governmental intrusion in private or personal information
    6. Missouri – legalizing medical marijuana.
    7. Michigan
      1. confirming automatic & Election Day registration
      2. confirming an independent redistricting commission
      3. And last but pot least — had to. legalizes recreational marijuana. Making Michigan the tenth state to do so. The others? Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California, Nevada, Colorado, Maine, Vermont, and Massachusetts.

*Not a complete list


Although there were a lot of wins, there are some big losses to note before we move on. Before we touch on the bad though, let’s do a quick “good wrap.”

Kim Davis (R-KY), lost her election. She was the county clerk who refused to sign marriage licenses for same-sex couples. The Neo-Nazi GOP candidate renounced by his party lost to Illinois Democrats.

This is where the positives end here. In races across the country, Republicans made wins, losses for progressives. Electing racists wasn’t their only win on election night. In Alabama, voters stripped rights from pregnant people. They gave those full legal rights to fertilized eggs, instead. Republicans went so far as electing to Congress Steve King (R-IA), denounced by his party as a Nazi.

Moving forward, nonetheless.


What to Expect from the new Democratic U.S. House of Representatives

Eight (8) years since the last time Democrats controlled the House, there’s a new image for Congress. A woman’s image. Over 100 women**, are new and returning to the House of Representatives. About one quarter (1/4) of the 435 seats. These are the Policy Positions shared by those women listed above, as per Vote Smart:

  1. Healthcare to cover pre-existing conditions and protecting the ACA
  2. Pro-choice rights
  3. To balance the budget, income taxes rising, particularly for the wealthy and top 1%
  4. Campaign finance reform
  5. Increasing federal spending to spur economic growth, not cutting corporate taxes
  6. Ensuring education has proper federal standards
  7. Government funding for renewable energy
  8. The federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions
  9. Gun control legislation
  10. Pushing back against “The Wall.” Protecting immigrants and ensuring asylum and an easier path to citizenship
  11. legalizing recreational marijuana use

**A similar look at the Top Priorities of these women at a later date.

***Rashida Tlaib offered the most to Vote Smart. She made very clear her political stances and postions.

**** Notable mention. Kate Brown (D-OR) – the countries first openly bisexual governor is re-elected in Oregon.

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Manning: Whistleblower to Senator?

NORTH BETHESDA, Md. (AP) — Chelsea Manning intends to run for the U.S. Senate in Maryland, returning the transgender former soldier to the spotlight after her conviction for leaking classified documents and her early release from military prison. Manning, 30, filed her statement of candidacy with the Federal Election Commission on Thursday, listing an apartment…

via Chelsea Manning Files To Run For U.S. Senate In Maryland — CBS New York

Miss Trans America Founder, First Trans Murder, 2018

A transgender woman was found stabbed and beaten to death in her Massachusetts home on Friday evening. Her husband has been charged with her murder. Christa Leigh Steele-Knudslien becomes the first known transgender person to be killed in 2018, according to GLAAD, an LGBT-rights organization…. from Raw Story http://ift.tt/2mdapJH via

via Transgender rights advocate killed — Daily Archive

It’s screwed up what’s going on

A friend made a good point yesterday, and here’s what he said on Facebook:

Everyone is upset Trump blocked trans people from enlisting. I agree he did it as a political move to spite the LGBT and appease the right. Examples include:

  • Any history of depression, anxiety or suicidal thoughts.
  • Any history of mood altering medication (including for ADHD)
  • Any dietary allergy
  • Any history of using a psychiatrist for more than six months
  • Diabetes
  • IBS
  • Color blindness
  • Pretty much any condition which requires regular medication.

The sad truth is that the psych requirements already ban most trans people, as well as a large portion of my feed who take any sort of medication. I agree Trump is doing this just to screw trans people, but in all honesty they were screwed before this anyway.” — Joe

And Joe isn’t wrong.. Being transgender is an alienating experience, and a dangerous one. The only statistic higher than our murder rate, is the number of trans people that enlist compared to cisgender individuals; we’re brave.

Stay brave friends, because this is only a speed bump, on a long road.

Transgender to no longer serve US Military

USA — Wednesday morning, “after consultation with [his] Generals and military experts”, President Donald J. Trump announced via Twitter that “transgender individuals” will no longer be accepted or allowed “to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military.” The ban comes after a discussion in the US Government about transgender medical costs and the inclusion of such costs in the Obama-era military budget.

Trump continues with the reasoning for the ban stating, “our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail. Thank you”

However, a 2016 RAND study commissioned by the Pentagon itself contradicts the President’s reasoning, finding that the medical costs for transgender military members would be an “exceedingly small portion of active-component health care expenditures.”

By analyzing private health insurance data on gender transition-related expenditures, (such as hormone therapy or surgical treatment, for instance), researchers found that Military Health System costs could increase by $2.4 million and $8.4 million per year if it were extended to cover the costs of the estimated 1,320 to 6,630 transgender people in the military. This amount pales in comparison to the Department of Defense’s $49.3 billion health care expenditures in 2014, for example, and would represent between 0.005% to 0.017% of the department’s overall health care costs, according to the study.

Overall, the study estimated that only 29–129 service members would seek gender transition–related care per year, and 30 to 140 personnel would seek hormone therapy. Another 25 to 130 personnel would seek surgical treatment. — via Fortune.com

Trans Community, Allies Press Back Against Police

WASHINGTON D.C. – Friday, in response to a traumatic and life-threatening incident that occurred Wednesday, trans woman of color organizer, speaker, and activist, Lourdes Ashley Hunter, made a call-to-action for those who stand in support of the transgender community, people of color, and anyone facing state repression by way of the now militarized police around the country. This rallying cry is resounding with the growing social awareness of police violence against the Black community, and louder still, in a year that isn’t just the most deadly on record for the transgender community, but one that saw the election of a President that many believe to be fuel to the flames of hatred, bigotry, white supremacy, and violence.
Lourdes posted this Friday afternoon: “[Metropolitan Police Department] has NO RIGHT to drag me out my home because a white woman was offended by my Blackness! I will be mobilizing if folks are interested in joining the team! Lawyers, organizers, folks with financial resources, cis folks who are ready to lay their body down for a Black Trans Woman!”
Late Wednesday night, 16 police officers illegally entered the home of Trans Women of Color Collective activist and organizer, Lourdes. Claiming an alleged report from a neighbor of assault by the known nonviolent activist. Without being read her Miranda Rights, she was taken into custody by the Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia’s 3rd Precinct.
Venus Di’Khadijah Selenite, who was present for the incident, reported that 16 police officers detained the single trans woman of color. The activist, Lourdes, wasn’t returned home until close to 4am, Thursday, the same day of a #TransCommunityBriefing at The White House including her and Venus. As of 10:30pm, Friday night, no formal charges are being pursued by the activist against the Metropolitan Police Department.
twocc
Image Credit: Trans Women of Color Collective