Talk about a great night! Progressives won big when voters went to the polls in states ranging from Maine, to Ohio, to Arizona, and even down to Mississippi. How often can you say that?
So here’s what happened. First, Maine voters stood up and fought back against the modern day Jim Crow laws Republicans are pushing across the country and restored same day voter registration. Score one for democracy. Then, down in Ohio, voters handed the union busters and Republican John Kasich a landslide loss and gave working people, including those awful cops, firefighters, and teachers, a victory by repealing Kasich’s Wisconsinesque anti-union legislation. Out in Arizona, the architect of that state’s racist anti-immigrant legislation went down in flames to a recall to which all I can say is Si, se puede!
For me though the best moment of the night was seeing the “personhood” amendment go down in Mississippi. I expected the election to be close, but it went down handily, by over a 100,000 vote margin. In Mississippi! Let me say that again-Anti-choice legislation went down by over 100,000 votes in Mississippi! That’s after the polls showed this thing being a tossup mind you. If this doesn’t cripple anti-choice forces I don’t know what would. Success of this style of legislation spreading was dependent on what was supposed to be a given win in one of the most conservative states in the union. If it couldn’t pass there no way it can get traction in a historically more moderate state like Arkansas. A narrow victory would have been sufficient for keeping that from happening and would have been a big deal in and of itself. This is huge! Consider this anti-women legislation dead in the water!
Meanwhile in Arkansas, the voters approved a bonds bill for better roads by a lopsided margin. All I’ll say on this is two things. First, considering how tonight went (and there were a few losses for our side to be fair, but not many and none so significant) maybe we should have gotten something a little spiffier on the ballot. Second, my favorite clown car rejects from Secure Arkansas sent several emails out railing on the bond issue and telling their loyalists to vote now. For awhile there I thought with low turnout they might just pull off a win. But no, they got absolutely crushed. Arkansas has taken what was the state’s largest and most prominent tea party group and tossed it aside. No one cares what Secure Arkansas and the looney tunes that run it have to say anymore. Good riddance.
So all in all a good night for progressives all across the country. It feels good to win. Damn good. So let’s keep it up, and bring on even bigger victories for 2012!