Recap of the 2018 midterms

The Results Of The 2018 Election Explained For Millennials, By A Millennial

There's plenty of reasons for both sides to be happy and disappointed.


Election Day 2018 has come and gone, leaving the rest of us to settle the inevitable fallout. Just like every other midterm election, this one was billed as a referendum on the sitting president and his party. Given the successes enjoyed by the Democrats on November 6th, many are claiming the results to indicate a blatantly obvious repudiation of Donald Trump's Republican Party.

But is that truly the case? Ehhh, not quite. Interpreting the results of the midterms not so much of a clear cut answer so much as it is a "choose your own adventure" type of situation.

Yes, the Democrats taking control over the House of Representatives is (in Trump's own words) YUGE for them, make no mistake about it. Despite the distinction of being the "lower" body of Congress, the House still wields considerable power as a legitimate check on President Trump and his legislative agenda. The Democrats now control the government's purse-strings as all spending bills begin in the House. They now hold the power of subpoena and the ability to open investigations, presumably into Trump-world. Oh, and should it ever get to this point, impeachment proceedings begin in the House as well.

The ball is now in Trump's court. Does he decide to buckle down and work with the Democrats to attempt getting legislation passed? Or does he turn them into the villains and gridlock becomes worse than ever? As the leader of this country, it is truly up t him.

Election Night 2018 was just as big for the Democrats as it was for the Republicans in 2010 when they took the House themselves. This is a blow to the GOP's power in DC and they will find difficulty moving forward. However, this was not the "blue wave" many were expecting. The tides may have shifted in some respects, but this was hardly a divine mandate from the American people.

The Republicans may have lost the House but they look like they will expand their majority in the Senate. The Senate Democrats were disadvantaged from the start by defending more seats, some of which reside in states Trump won, and the GOP capitalized. North Dakota, Missouri, and Indiana all flipped from blue to red. Depending on how Florida turns out after their recount, there may be another Republican pick-up. Notably, those four red-state Democratic senators all voted against Justice Brett Kavanaugh, Trump's Supreme Court nominee.

Perhaps the biggest victories for the Republicans was the fact they won the three most emotional, nationally covered races in the country. Beto O'Rourke lost his Texas Senate bid to incumbent Ted Cruz, Tallahassee mayor Andrew Gillum did not become the Governor of Florida, and although she has not yet officially conceded, Stacey Abrams does not appear to have the math on her side needed to win the governor's race in Georgia. All three were hyper-progressive candidates, with Beto O'Rourke running to the left of even Bernie Sanders. Their defeats signify lurching to the far left is not a viable option in moderate/conservative areas in the country.

The Republicans also retained control of the Governor's Mansion in Ohio as well. Florida and Ohio are the "swingiest" of swing states. With the GOP controlling both, it will help them immensely when redistricting happens after the 2020 census.

In the end, We The People are going to take what we want out of this election. If you're a Democrat you are thrilled you now have legitimate power once more. If you're a Republican you're thrilled about the expanded Senate majority and critical governorship victories. Conversely, whichever you are, you're disappointed (to say the least) in the opposite side's victories.

Before this election, I held a certain level of optimism, just like I did before 2016. That optimism remains unaltered. America will be fine. The beauty of this is we'll have the opportunity to do this all over again in two years!

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An Open Letter To Democrats From A Millennial Republican

Why being a Republican doesn't mean I'm inhuman.

Dear Democrats,

I have a few things to say to you — all of you.

You probably don't know me. But you think you do. Because I am a Republican.

Gasp. Shock. Horror. The usual. I know it all. I hear it every time I come out of the conservative closet here at my liberal arts university.

SEE ALSO: What I Mean When I Say I'm A Young Republican

“You're a Republican?" people ask, saying the word in the same tone that Draco Malfoy says “Mudblood."

I know that not all Democrats feel about Republicans this way. Honestly, I can't even say for certain that most of them do. But in my experience, saying you're a Republican on a liberal college campus has the same effect as telling someone you're a child molester.

You see, in this day and age, with leaders of the Republican Party standing up and spouting unfortunately ridiculous phrases like “build a wall," and standing next to Kim Davis in Kentucky after her release, we Republicans are given an extreme stereotype. If you're a Republican, you're a bigot. You don't believe in marriage equality. You don't believe in racial equality. You don't believe in a woman's right to choose. You're extremely religious and want to impose it on everyone else.

Unfortunately, stereotypes are rooted in truth. There are some people out there who really do think these things and feel this way. And it makes me mad. The far right is so far right that they make the rest of us look bad. They make sure we aren't heard. Plenty of us are fed up with their theatrics and extremism.

For those of us brave enough to wear the title “Republican" in this day and age, as millennials, it's different. Many of us don't agree with these brash ideas. I'd even go as far as to say that most of us don't feel this way.

For me personally, being a Republican doesn't even mean that I automatically vote red.

When people ask me to describe my political views, I usually put it pretty simply. “Conservative, but with liberal social views."

“Oh," they say, “so you're a libertarian."

“Sure," I say. But that's the thing. I'm not really a libertarian.

Here's what I believe:

I believe in marriage equality. I believe in feminism. I believe in racial equality. I don't want to defund Planned Parenthood. I believe in birth control. I believe in a woman's right to choose. I believe in welfare. I believe more funds should be allocated to the public school system.

Then what's the problem? Obviously, I'm a Democrat then, right?

Wrong. Because I have other beliefs too.

Yes, I believe in the right to choose — but I'd always hope that unless a pregnancy would result in the bodily harm of the woman, that she would choose life. I believe in welfare, but I also believe that our current system is broken — there are people who don't need it receiving it, and others who need it that cannot access it.

I believe in capitalism. I believe in the right to keep and bear arms, because I believe we have a people crisis on our hands, not a gun crisis. Contrary to popular opinion, I do believe in science. I don't believe in charter schools. I believe in privatizing as many things as possible. I don't believe in Obamacare.

Obviously, there are other topics on the table. But, generally speaking, these are the types of things we millennial Republicans get flack for. And while it is OK to disagree on political beliefs, and even healthy, it is NOT OK to make snap judgments about me as a person. Identifying as a Republican does not mean I am the same as Donald Trump.

Just because I am a Republican, does not mean you know everything about me. That does not give you the right to make assumptions about who I am as a person. It is not OK for you to group me with my stereotype or condemn me for what I feel and believe. And for a party that prides itself on being so open-minded, it shocks me that many of you would be so judgmental.

So I ask you to please, please, please reexamine how you view Republicans. Chances are, you're missing some extremely important details. If you only hang out with people who belong to your own party, chances are you're missing out on great people. Because, despite what everyone believes, we are not our stereotype.


A millennial Republican

Cover Image Credit: NEWSWORK.ORG

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Why The Idea Of 'No Politics At The Dinner Table' Takes Place And Why We Should Avoid It

When did having a dialogue become so rare?


Why has the art of civilized debate and conversation become unheard of in daily life? Why is it considered impolite to talk politics with coworkers and friends? Expressing ideas and discussing different opinions should not be looked down upon.

I have a few ideas as to why this is our current societal norm.

1. Politics is personal.

Your politics can reveal a lot about who you are. Expressing these (sometimes controversial) opinions may put you in a vulnerable position. It is possible for people to draw unfair conclusions from one viewpoint you hold. This fosters a fear of judgment when it comes to our political beliefs.

Regardless of where you lie on the spectrum of political belief, there is a world of assumption that goes along with any opinion. People have a growing concern that others won't hear them out based on one belief.

As if a single opinion could tell you all that you should know about someone. Do your political opinions reflect who you are as a person? Does it reflect your hobbies? Your past?

The question becomes "are your politics indicative enough of who you are as a person to warrant a complete judgment?"

Personally, I do not think you would even scratch the surface of who I am just from knowing my political identification.

2. People are impolite.

The politics themselves are not impolite. But many people who wield passionate, political opinion act impolite and rude when it comes to those who disagree.

The avoidance of this topic among friends, family, acquaintances and just in general, is out of a desire to 'keep the peace'. Many people have friends who disagree with them and even family who disagree with them. We justify our silence out of a desire to avoid unpleasant situations.

I will offer this: It might even be better to argue with the ones you love and care about, because they already know who you are aside from your politics, and they love you unconditionally (or at least I would hope).

We should be having these unpleasant conversations. And you know what? They don't even need to be unpleasant! Shouldn't we be capable of debating in a civilized manner? Can't we find common ground?

I attribute the loss of political conversation in daily life to these factors. 'Keeping the peace' isn't an excuse. We should be discussing our opinions constantly and we should be discussing them with those who think differently.

Instead of discouraging political conversation, we should be encouraging kindness and understanding. That's how we will avoid the unpleasantness that these conversations sometimes bring.

By avoiding them altogether, we are doing our youth a disservice because they are not being exposed to government, law, and politics, and they are not learning to deal with people and ideas that they don't agree with.

Next Thanksgiving, talk politics at the table.

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