We’ll that was a surprise. I, with the rest of the majority of the country, was in shock late Tuesday night into Wednesday morning. How could Trump win the presidency? This isn’t what was supposed to happen. I didn’t vote for Trump or Clinton, but I assumed, because the media told me so, that Clinton would be the victor. What a major underestimate that was.
So why did Clinton lose? Blaming people who voted third party, like myself, isn’t the reason why Trump was elected. I wasn’t going to vote for Clinton or Trump, no matter what. I just couldn’t. I wouldn’t have felt good about my choice. As much as you couldn’t vote for Trump, I couldn’t vote for Clinton. So let go of that blame you have towards people who voted different than you.
My hypothesis of why Trump was winning in battleground states on Tuesday night was low voter turn-out. What else could explain how the polls were so wrong? Turns out I was right, which is a rarity, so I’d like to share these numbers with you.
Voting Eligible Turnout 2016- ALMOST A RECORD LOW.
Almost half of eligible voters stayed home. WHOA NELLY. (These numbers are from the NPR Political Podcast, which I’ve embedded below)
So can we stop blaming the third parties and take a real look at the Clinton campaign? I know it’s hard to hear, especially when you were so passionate about your candidate. But I implore you, did you do everything that you could do to get Clinton elected? Did you go door to door? Did you make phone calls? Did you help plan rallies? If you did, good! I’m sorry that you worked hard for your candidate and this was the turnout! However, I do think there is a systematic apathy in the Clinton campaign. I can tell from
being involved politically in Northeastern PA, that Clinton’s campaign was absent from my life. Only one person knocked on my door- and they came to speak to my finace, who is still a registered democrat. No one from Clinton’s campaign called my phone to see if I would be voting for Clinton, no one came to my house to talk to me personally about whether I was voting, no one reached out to me to see if I would vote for Clinton since I was part of the Demexit over the summer. And if I had to guess, this is partially what caused her the election. Her campaign thought the blue wall was unbreakable which was a folly in the face of apathetic voters who thought they didn’t need to get out and vote for Clinton because she had it in the bag.
Another big problem I had from this campaign was Clinton supporters ostracizing Trump supporters. By making Trump supporters afraid to admit that they were Trump supporters for fear of being called racist or sexist or bigoted or stupid… well that ended any conversation that may have been possible to change their minds and open up their ears to listen to a different perspective. And don’t think for a second that Clinton supporters didn’t make Trump supporters feel as though they were the other. The turnout numbers show that that there had been a much greater number of silent Trump supporters than originally thought, and a reason for this has to be partially due to the combative political climate that Clinton helped create. How much sense does this make: Clinton supporters have been much meaner to me and called me stupid and naive for voting third party than Trump supporters. In fact, no Trump supporter I know said anything negative about me voting for Stein. So… I think that’s something that needs work on over the next four years within the democratic party.
I know that passion can get the best of us and it’s so important to be passionate FOR someone. It gets dangerous when that passion transfers into being AGAINST someone. Its this type of attitude which deepens the divides. 15% of people who said they couldn’t stand Trump voted for him… if this doesn’t show how dangerous a vote against someone can be, then I don’t know what is.
So what happens now that Trump is going to be our president and all three of our branches of government are going to be republican and conservative? Well, we organize. We preserve our freedoms locally in order to have a sturdy foundation to challenge our federal politics. Don’t loose hope that it can’t be done- you just have to get involved! All this energy from the aftermath of the dystopian results on Tuesday needs to be bottled up! Don’t let it dissipate! In the end of 2017, when the ACA is probably going to be repealed, and 22 million people lose their health insurance, remember your passionate energy you have now and stand up!
Wondering how you can actually do something, other than just post shit on facebook? Join local chapters of your party, join organizations like the IWW, get informed about your local ACLU chapter, go to your city council meetings, write your editor, write your congressman, GET INFORMED!
And don’t let fear get the best of you. Fear is crippling. Fear will tell you to not get involved. To only worry. To stay at home. To tell others to stay at home. To blame others. Fear is the leader of all these emotional pulls. Stay present, stay woke, stay positive. Being scared and spreading fear won’t accomplish anything.
If there is any time for revolution, it will be within the next four years. I urge you to take a stance!
Local chapter links to get involved:
NPR Political Podcast on Voter Turnout: