OUT & ABOUT: The Voters Who Didn’t Give Up

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BY DENISE CLAY/ Well, thank goodness that’s over.

The long, WWE Rage in the Cage match that was the 2012 Presidential Elections ended Tuesday night. Thankfully…

There’s a lot of things I won’t miss about this year’s elections, and I’m a political junkie. Hopefully, it’ll be a while before we get anymore of the following:

* Poorly moderated debates with questions that don’t reflect any of the issues facing large sections of the country.

* Campaign commercials featuring the kind of mud that you make up in large vats to throw.

* Laws designed to tick off octogenarians and nonagenarians who only want to observe a right to vote – which they probably had to deal with someone trying to shoot them over, when they were young….

* And people throwing bombs at Sesame Street … something that’s real unacceptable, by the way…

It was the Silly Season in a variety of ways. And yet, while many things changed, a whole lot of other things stayed the same.

Let’s start with the big thing: President Barack Obama (and Scranton’s own Vice President Joe Biden) won a second term of office, smacking GOP nominee Mitt Romney around in the Electoral College, 303 to 206. He also won the popular vote by more than a million votes.

If there’s any state the President needs to thank for making sure he still had a job for the next four years, it’s Pennsylvania. In order for the Prez to maintain his hold over Pennsylvania, the City of Brotherly Love had to come out in droves. And, believe it or not, it did. More than 400,000 Philadelphians took time out of their day to vote… and many of them stayed in lines for as long as two hours to exercise that right.

Why? Because when someone tries to take something valuable away from you, it makes you use the heck out of it when you get it back. Many of the people standing out in line would have been sitting this election out had the voter-ID law passed by the legislature had been allowed to stand in time for this election. This law, which required voters to get state-sponsored ID in order to vote, so annoyed people that they came out in droves.

Because of this, Democrats did well overall. In fact, the Keystone State made history. Kathleen Kane became the first woman in the Commonwealth’s history to serve as Attorney General.

It also should have shown the Republican Party it might be time to realize something that it hasn’t: There ain’t as many white folks as there used to be.

I know some of you are going to read this and think I’m being racist, but I’m not. I’m only pointing out something related to former President Bill Clinton’s favorite subject: arithmetic.

While Romney got 59% of whites, which was around the same percentage that has brought other Republicans to victory in the past, that wasn’t enough to carry him. The coalition that has kept the Obamas from having to pack up and move back to Chicago was made up of women, young people, gays and lesbians, and people of color. Otherwise known as people some Republicans wouldn’t spit on if they were on fire.

Like it or not, this coalition is the majority, and if it’s folks you don’t talk to, you might want to do something radical in order to stop being marginalized: talk to them.

If you talked to them, you’d know women would love it if you’d stop trying to legislate them back into the 1950s by denying them reproductive choice; gays and lesbians would love it if you’d stop trying to put them back in a closet with a cement door; and people of color would love it if you would recognize the Emancipation Proclamation is established law. And young people? Well, they’d just love to see you at least try and work with the President to create the kind of economy that will allow them to use that degree that they paid all that money for to earn them the kind of cash that will allow them to move out of their parent’s homes.

If you don’t, you’re going to get beat down a lot over the next few years. And you’re eventually going to go the way of the Whigs.

But while the Republican Party had its share of losers, it did have one big winner: vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan. Now, why was he a winner? He was a winner because he ran for reelection for his house seat while running for nation’s second-highest office. Guess he was a better student of Ayn Rand than we thought….

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One Response to OUT & ABOUT: The Voters Who Didn’t Give Up

  1. Excellent note … what a marvelous way to outline the event called the National General Election 2012.

    Baba Bob Shipman
    November 9, 2012 at 7:48 pm

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