There is a very popular author in the alternative history genre by the name of call alternative history by the name Harry Turtledove. “Alternative history” can best be summarized as “what would have happened if John Kennedy survived the assassination attempt in Dallas?”
Similarly, one day historians may look at the 2022 elections and wonder what would have happened if the projected Republican tsunami had actually occurred. What we do know is that, at least for the immediate present, here are some of the things that will not happen:
- There will be no national abortion ban
- There will be no reduction of taxes for high end corporate CEO’s
- There will not be a successful effort to end to Social Security
- There will not be a successful effort to end Medicare
- The Affordable Care Act will not be repealed
- There will not be a successful effort by Congress to overturn the 2024 presidential election.
What we do know is that the Republicans like Senator Rick Scott, who was the author of the Republican Senate Campaign Committee platform that articulated the assault on so many Americans, is not going away and is definitely not giving up.
If we have learned anything over the past several decades it is that the right wing of the right wing is persistent and committed to its cause. They are not looking at the 2022 election results as a setback and they are certainly not viewing the results as a permanent failure.
They are, and have been, very intentional and very strategic and as persistent as the natural phenomenon of erosion. And the analogy is apt, because erosion only stops when its target is either eliminated or drastically changed. And so it is when the target is American democracy and basic human rights.
The progressive movement is characterized by stops and starts and is seemingly always reacting to real danger only when the danger transitions from possible to imminent to immediate. And it is certainly the case right now.
The fact that over 300 election deniers were running for different officers across the nation is more than a warning (can you say Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin?), it is a clear and present danger. And is clear that the progressives, liberals and anyone concerned about the maintenance of some version of justice and liberty need to stopping playing defense and starting being proactive.
Once again, the fact that the right wing of the right did not create a tsunami of victory on a national basis points out that there were some rays of victory (can you say Senator John Fetterman and Governor Wes Moore?) cannot obscure the fact that a dark wave of ugly, racist, anti-libertarian Republican candidates are already lining up to run the cities and states and the nation lining up for 2023 and 2024.
To be clear, this is not the time to be afraid.
This is the time remember the heritage of being part of the struggle for freedom and humanity.
Now is the time.