Democracy, Itself, On Ballots Nationwide, Election Deniers Must Be Stopped

There is no denying the fact that this fall the very fabric of our nation is on the ballots in every state and congressional district. Democracy itself is a candidate and needs your ardent support.

I have noticed over the past year what has become a standard line from supporters of Donald Trump when it comes to those of us who talk about democracy, law and order, or the continuing political chaos.  The refrain from the Trump base is that those who care about the nation have ‘Trump derangement syndrome’.  Talking about the continuing threats to democracy and the growing absurdity of now even violent-laden comments from Trump seems to unsettle that base of voters who championed his candidacy starting in 2015.

As we are aware, however, the growing legal cases along with the weight of evidence proving the dire nature of the seditous insurrection following the 2020 election mandates our attention to the news and conversations with our friends around the dinner table.  It is natural to care about democracy.  And in equal measure, it is also natural to disdain illiberal actions and autocratic desires. But as we also know from the past 6 years, a time which will leave no historian bored or without a topic to research and write, a sizable segment of the nation rejects both constitutional norms, and still more alarming, is dismissive of facts about a whole bevy of topics.

What this has then produced in our nation for the 2022 midterm elections are some staggering statistics that would nearly boggle the mind if we had not already lived through so much preposterousness.

299: That is the number of Republican nominees for federal and top statewide offices across the country — an outright majority — who have either falsely denied the 2020 election outcome or questioned its legitimacy.

174: The number running in conservative seats they’re safely expected to win.

51: The number running in tight races with Democrats.

As Amy Gardner writes so powerfully in her Washington Post news story this has potentially dire consequences for our nation.

The implications will be lasting: If Republicans take control of the House, as many political forecasters predict, election deniers would hold enormous sway over the choice of the nation’s next speaker, who in turn could preside over the House in a future contested presidential election. The winners of all the races examined by The Post — those for governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, attorney general, Senate and House — will hold some measure of power overseeing American elections.

Gardner also reports a breakdown of each state showing where election deniers will be on the ballot—that would be in a shocking number of 48 of the 50 states. Here is what the newspaper lists for Wisconsin.

Elections deniers running for office in Wisconsin

While the top races for governor and senate are creating many column inches in newspapers and discussions from on-air political analysts, it is the secretary of state races that have me paying even closer attention.  Election-denying candidates are making up the GOP’s nominees in roughly half of the 27 secretary-of-state races on the ballot this mid-term cycle. I know the gravity of the situation does not make for a sexy television news story with grand video footage, but the stakes about this matter could not be more intense.  If fact-denying candidates can win in 2022 they can use their positions in 2024 to thwart the will of the voters in that presidential election.

We know from our long history that a segment of the white male population has yearned to undermine social progress and used every means possible to prevent the loss of their power demographically and socially. What Trump has stewed up and used most artfully to his advantage, and which a large segment of that population has swallowed, is now a real threat to our democracy. With the lack of redistricting reform, undermining of voting rights, and a repudiation of a presidential election there is an attempt to allow the minority to rule. Such an outcome would absolutely transform and fundamentally damage our constitutional democracy. Their aim is also to stem and alter our ideals aimed at creating and furthering a multiracial, multicultural society. 

There is no denying the fact that this fall the very fabric of our nation is on the ballots in every state and congressional district. Democracy itself is a candidate and needs your ardent support.

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