It gives me great pleasure to see the much-vaunted Republican “red wave” turn into a pitiful pink puddle. Just before the polls opened, Lauren Boebert, who stands to lose her seat as I write this, tweeted “Let the red wave begin!” That tweet was followed by 17 hours of silence as she watched her own House seat melt away in a chorus of crickets.
So divisive has Trump shown himself to be inside his own MAGA base, so toxic are the MAGA lies and so thoroughly sick are women of male Republicans trying to insinuate their mediaeval values into their rights that history has done an about face. The usual wisdom, that the opposite party always gains control after the election of a new President could have just been set on its ear.
It’s all down to what Joe Scarborough termed Donald, Dobbs and the Deniers. The three Ds have poisoned the much-anticipated red wave. Donald Trump is already looking for specific Republicans to blame for this disastrous midterm failure. Republican minority leader Kevin McCarthy could be first on his hit list.
The enormously unpopular SCOTUS Dobbs decision has turned women out in record numbers to vote against Republican candidates. Far right election deniers, such as Kari Lake, are losing. As I write this Lake is behind by about 12,000 votes with 66 percent of ballots counted. Pennsylvania has flipped to Democrats.
Lindsay Graham’s 2016 comment, “If we nominate Trump, we will get destroyed and we will deserve it,” is looking more and more like a belated prophecy. Given sufficient time fascistic movements collapse under the weight of their own toxicity. We could be witnessing that result right before our eyes.
One paradoxical bonus to election denialism is it kept a lot of MAGA voters home. The Big Lie that elections are miraculously “rigged” by Democrats somehow no matter what anyone does has amusingly caused many MAGA morons to give up in advance. The lie that their votes don’t count has become self-fulfilling. It is a delicious irony that we can all enjoy.
Should it turn out that we retain both houses of Congress — and I believe we will — our next true work must begin. The 2024 election starts right away. Joe Biden, awash with victory, has announced his re-election intentions. Trump and DiSantis are gloriously turning into enemies that should divide the MAGA movement. With Trump in danger of criminal indictment the Republican Party is in a state of chaos and calamity. This is our chance. Let’s seize it. And, as ever, ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, comrades and friends, stay safe.
Robert Harrington is an American expat living in Britain. He is a portrait painter.