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.

Advertisements

No Excuses: The Election Rundown: Now Go Vote!

Colorado, there’s a lot on the ballot, and as is the case for all elections: there’s a lot at stake.

You have the civil right to vote. Regardless of who or what gets in your way, voting was a hard-fought right. It harks back to the European Enlightenment (e.g. Rousseau) and is still a valuable process. Powerful interests (i.e. the Koch Brothers lobbyists, international) would change this. As has been the case ever since the franchise first left the exclusivity of the rich and powerful.

In Colorado, you can vote in-person long in advance of an election.

This article is not for you, Early Voters.

This is for those of you that still are on the fence. Hopefully, this won’t be a push in any specific direction sans a single one: toward the polls.

There are No Excuses, not to vote as theSkimm points out. If not knowing the issues is one of your reasons, well, we got your back. Here’s almost everything you need to know  before the polls close at 7 P.M. today. 

Google it: “How to Vote”

There are a lot of sites and organizations that want to help you vote. Those that do their darndest to give you an idea of your ballot and polling place, follow:

Google, Vote SmartVote.orgBallotpedia, theSkimm, Rock the Vote, Head Count, and Vote 411.

Others, strengthen your right to vote, by offering protection and support. For instance, the Election Protection of Vote.org866 Our Vote, and Common CauseStill more offer support for info. These include Democracy Works, and support for getting to the polls (i.e. Lime, Uber and Lyft, and even Carpool Vote).

In some places, you can vote by text, online, and even in an app. The point is clear: we have the technology, we can vote better, faster, stronger!


No one likes getting stumped. Few enjoy voting per a candidate or party’s stump speech. So, here’s the rundown that you likely opened this article for Coloradans:

The Down ‘n’ Dirty

Follow the elections in Colorado at The Denver Post, and nationally, at Democracy Now! and The Intercept, here. Watch the latter, here.

About the Ballot

Before you get into what is on the ballot be sure to Vote Smart on your representatives. Then, learn the ABC’s and 123’s of why those measures aren’t simply 1-12 or something. 9News breaks the info, which you can find from the Secretary of State’s website, down nicely as follows:

Constitutional amendments that are referred to us by lawmakers require two-thirds vote of the legislature to make the ballot in the first place. If they do, they are given a letter, such as “Amendment Y.” Propositions that are referred to us by lawmakers require a majority vote of the legislature and are given a double letter, such as “Proposition AA,” but we don’t have any of those in 2018.

In 2018, the statewide issues are:

  • Amendments V, U, W, X, Y, Z and A
  • Amendments 73, 74 and 75
  • Propositions 109, 110, 111 and 112

City and county issues on your ballot are numbered and lettered differently.

Ballot issues initiated by the public:

  • 200-299 County issues
  • 300-399 Municipal issues
  • 400-499 School district issues
  • 500-599 Political subdivision greater than a county
  • 600-699 Political subdivision within a county

Ballot issues referred by a governmental body:

  • 1A-1Z County issues
  • 2A-2Z Municipal issues
  • 3A-3Z School district issues
  • 4A-4Z Political subdivision greater than a county
  • 5A-5Z Political subdivision within a county

Now that you read the above, check out these statewide Amendments. Has your judgment on them changed?

Amendment 73

Amendment 112

Now check out the rest of those ballot measure, and go vote!

Find your ballots! Ballotpedia has those measures for you. The Colorado Independent also gives a good breakdown of the ballot.


Just Vote Colorado!

Here’s your Vote.org link, and your protections.


If you need a ride to the polls today or in the future, visit CarpoolVote.com. You can also call the interactive voice response service at 1-804-424-5335

If you have any issues or concerns today or in the future with voting, visit www.866ourvote.org. You can also call 1-866-OUR-VOTE (1-866-687-8683).

TheBreez – Vote and stuff!

Quote of the Day

I dissent.” — The cutest, most lawful, most feminist, and most notorious Halloween costumes, you may have missed this Halloween. (Also, hard not to vote tomorrow with the mental image of these adorable RBG’s shaking their heads in disappointment.)

Take me, Spanish Caravan

The Story

Thousands of migrants make their way through Central America and are nearing the United States.

New? Or used Caravan?

Although some of us haven’t heard of a migrant caravan before late this summer, every year migrants make the trek to the United States seeking asylum. And though you may have heard of the caravan only recently, it has been in the news since April, as part of an ongoing wave of migrants, although it hasn’t hit the same pages in the papers as politics until the past couple months.

Caravan response…

Back in April, Trump vowed to meet the migrants with a militaristic response. That has only grown, since then. Now Trump plans to deploy troops in numbers that out-proportion that of the troops in Afghanistan. The number grew from just under one thousand, to over 5,000, and now about 15,000 to assist Border Patrol and other U.S. agents. The President clarified Friday that the military “won’t have to fire” on travelers. (The fact that citizens even had to be concerned about that tho…)

USMCA, Caravan, and afta NAFTA…

Back in October, Trump renegotiated NAFTA, the North American Free Trade Agreement, and announced the successful re-agreement between the United States, Mexico, and Canada, the USMCA. Last week, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R -SC) warned Mexico: turn the caravan around or the US will pull this agreement over. This was another economic threat, to follow up those from the President.

Reception of the caravan…

While some smaller groups have made it to the border, the immigration debate has flared up (just in time for midterm elections, what a surprise!), and the ignorance has flared up as well: starting with, well, a caravan of alternative facts. The worst may be when journalists get it wrong, and let’s say, call the caravan a “ragtag army of the poor” (shame on you AP). Trump fanned the flames, claiming that most of the migrants were “hardened criminals” but really they’re mostly women and girls, and children and babies, traveling in such a large group for their own protection. For Democrats, the question of the caravan is pretty straight-forward and a lot simpler to answer than subjects such as ICE, to shrink or to abolish? Or the White House-led debate on crime. Or how exactly to win in the healthcare department.

thebreez

Shepard Smith (on Fox, no less!) said that the caravan wasn’t a big deal, and was only being blown out of proportion to fire up the Republican base for the midterms. (Basically!) For more info, here’s a link to PolitiFact. Now go out there and vote tomorrow if you haven’t already!

Caught in TheBreez

And in local news…

In a recent poll conducted on Nextdoor, the top issues affecting the local community include the following topics that may lead to future investigations:

  1. Rising housing costs (residents say: thanks pot)

  2. Municipal broadband

  3. Crime rates and justice:

  1. Car Break-ins

  2. Porch pirating (when people steal your fresh swag from Amazon right off your stoop)

  3. Front-yard Thievery and Destruction

  4. Neighborhood Watch program revitalization

Colorado tho…

Colorado has a referendum that’s catching eyes on the ballot for tomorrow: slavery. Yeah, you read that right. Two years ago, Coloradans failed to repeal the Constitutional amendment allowing for slavery in the prison system. Tomorrow, Coloradans may actually vindicate themselves. Fingers crossed and all, but this isn’t solely a CO issue; this is a national problem inherent in the interpretation, by some, of the 13th Amendment of the United States’ Bill of Rights.

Speaking of voting…

Get all the deets on the midterms from PBS, RealClearPolitics, and FiveThirtyEight. Whether you’re from New York, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Arkansas, Florida, or one of the other 31 states engaged in gubernatorial elections, you can find a fun interactive map of all the action here, but don’t forget to Vote Smart no matter what the race is. There’s a lot at stake and 435 House seats to fill. Have fuUun!

Back to prison…

VICE released a new docu-series following the criminal justice system’s biggest issue. One which has over 100,000 individuals wrongly convicted. The series is called “Innocence Ignored.” (Another thought on the justice system: could the legal/judicial system be overhauled by artificial intelligence?)

#MeToo

Since late last year, the #MeToo Movement has been on fire. From actors to Supreme Court Justices, the movement now has a new target in its sights: unfair practices from large corporations regarding sexual harassment. Looking at you Google!

What’s transpired…

Here’s the wrap in recent transgender news: after Trump came for the community, attempting to define it out of the UN’s Human Rights protections, universities, over 1600 scientists, about 60 corporations, and activists, all had something to say: no you don’t. The struggle continues in states across the U.S. this midterm, however, such as Massachusetts. If you find yourself on Netflix looking for a documentary to educate yourself further about the community, give Katie Couric’s Gender Revolution a gander.

Okay, the obligatory Trump wrap up…

  1. Some may not believe that Trump has always been so hard on trans people as he has been lately. Well, here’s some reading on that, because he has.

  2. Speaking of his actions… here are his Presidential Actions and bills signed into law in the first 500 days. Or even better, a timeline of everything he’s done thus far. And a look at how much effect he really has had on the economy (Obama would disagree)

  3. Since taking office 28 staff members of the White House have left or plan to leave by the end of the year. Here’s more about what Trump has done to fill vacancies.

And in news, that won’t make you want to tear your hair out… unless you’re a fan of anyone but.

The Red Sox. They won the World Series, for the fourth time this century! Boston was abuzz with excitement, celebrating with a parade, after totaling nine wins overall since 1903. Not a baseball fan? Well, how about them trades in football, eh?

Don’t forget, your weekly dose of science…

Science isn’t sexy? Tell that to these photos! Ow ow! Still no? You actually like politics more? (Really!?) Well, you’re in luck.

Enjoying The Breez?

Share it with your kids.

If you’re good at something, never do it for free.” — The Joker (Heath Ledger). The Dark Knight (2008).

Think I’m good at this? Tip me!