Sunday, October 28, 2018

Why the fuss about midterms? Donald Trump is not on the ballot

A version of this was published in the Sky Hi News, Oct.30-Oct 31, 2018

Donald Trump is not on the ballot but he  says he wants the November 6 midterms to be a referendum about him.  If so, send him a message with your vote.  That is the American way. What is not the American way are his  words of hate and fear or to deliver the same in return. Words have consequences." Violence begets violence" (MLK.Jr)

Both parties use  heated political oratory, but no one is  equivalent to the bully pulpit of a president  and no one equals Trump’s constant insults of rivals by name, his demeaning racial and religious minorities, and his exhortation of  violence against reporters.  This is still a citizen driven democracy. If that is the president we want to continue to empower, that is the president we get.  My hope is that  most Americans  see an America better than that.  We are becoming two countries: one mired in yearning for a past where racism was not tempered by political correctness  and patriarchy reigned unchallenged.  There is another America driven  by tolerance, fairness,  and idealism of our founders who gave us a form of democracy that, unless abused, would protect us from hate mongers.  In the Novembers of  2018 and 2020, this country has the opportunity to choose which country it will be for years to come.

The horrific massacre in the Pittsburgh synagogue Saturday reminds us  of what an atmosphere of hate of “others” can foster. The anti-Semitic, anti-immigrant shooter posted his beliefs on social media. Chants of “lock her up”, “Build the wall” rocked and still rocks Trump’s  rallies. Earlier in the week, a  frequent Trump rally attender addressed letter bombs to the who’s who of Trump’s  named enemies and critics  and  had plastered his van with targets drawn over faces of those who were to become  bomb recipients.  The FBI and Attorney General Jeff Sessions quickly put to rest Trump media promoted conspiracy theories that this was a hoax, committed by Democrats to make the President look bad. The bombs were real. The accused was a partisan.

Trump cannot control how every unhinged follower will react, but Trump with his powerful position  bears a special responsibility not to be a match that lights the fires.  Trump  does not stop hate filled chants at rallies; he regales in them.  Trump, taking no responsibility in inspiring hateful violence,  blamed the bomber  on the mainstream media he had frequently called  the  enemy of the people. For what? For reporting and preserving Trump’s own words, for providing live coverage of his rallies, and  fact checking?

Not to be lost in breaking news, are issues that impact many,  health care coverage and Roe v Wade’s survival.  We are voting for  state officials who can shape them .Twenty GOP State Attorney Generals have sued  to declare the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare)  unconstitutional, ending subsidized health insurance  premiums and  coverage of pre-existing conditions. There is no comparable replacement.  The Democrat  Colorado Attorney General candidate Phil Weiser would  defend  the ACA against the Texas suit destined for the Supreme Court. His GOP opponent  George Brauchler, once had backed repeal.  The conservative Supreme Court  majority is likely either to rule against Roe v Wade or to give more power to states to restrict access. The Governor can veto  what  its legislature passes.  Democrat Jared Polis is pro choice. His opponent Walker Stapleton is pro life and  is mum if he would sign state legislation further restricting abortions. In the Attorney General’s race, Weiser is pro choice.  Anti choice Brauchler has left open  whether he would file  a brief  before the Supreme Court urging  repeal  of Roe v Wade

 Forgot to register?  No problem. In Colorado, you can register up to and  on election day , November 6. Visit for how.  For candidate positions, google.

(This  posting draws on, condenses, joins and updates some recent postings
Footnotes and sources can also be found in prior postings on similar subjects)

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