I was on edge all day yesterday, nervous to hope.
Superstition came to claim me. We didn’t watch the returns in the same place, didn’t eat the same food, drink the same wine.
And in the end, the blue wave didn’t quite overwhelm, but I am happy nonetheless. (Also, keep in mind that if there were more Republican senators up for re-election, things could have been very different for Democrats last night). Because I will take the victories that did come. And there are some to celebrate raucously.
Women! One hundred of them, to be exact will march into Congress for the first time ever. Right here at home, Ayana Pressley became the first woman of color to hit Congress from Massachusetts. Rashida Tlaib in Michigan and Ilhan Omar in Minnesota are the first Muslim women to take Congressional seats. Sharice Davids beat a Republican man in Kansas. Deb Haaland won in New Mexico, becoming the first Native American woman elected to Congress. In Tennessee, Marsha Blackburn, a Republican, became the state’s first woman elected to the Senate. Jahana Hayes is Connecticut’s first black congresswoman. Veronica Escobar and Sylvia Garcia are the first Latina congresswomen in Texas. Janet Mills is the first female governor of Maine. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is the youngest woman ever to win a congressional seat. Stacey Abrams is still waiting for the full count in Georgia. Estrogen tsunami, baby! First we marched, then we won. History books got new a chapter last night.
Yes, the Republicans gained more Senate seats, but the Democrats took the House for the first time in eight years. C’mon, victory dance with me! The Liar-in-Chief will now have a Congress that will limit his actions (although they sadly won’t have any ability to stop his tweet storms). This is big!
I was heartbroken that Beto didn’t win, but I’ve never seen a social media fundraising game like his (I swear, they contacted me in my dreams and I gave money). This intelligent, empathic and charismatic guy may have lost, but he also won. And you can only imagine how much I loved his use of my favorite word in his concession speech –“I’m so fucking proud of you too, Beto!” This guy is the future of the Democratic party.
Andrew Gillum’s loss in Florida was also a tough one to swallow, but as BenjaminEPark said in a tweet: “I swear Florida could be voting between ice cream and a kick to the head and the results would be 50.5%-49.5%.”
Also in the major victory category–Jared Polis, the first openly gay man was elected governor in Colorado. Yes to diversity!
So, I’m going to celebrate today. There was a lot that went right last night and a lot of hope for the future. And I for one, am optimistic for the first time in two years.
Gratitude that overwhelming numbers came out yesterday to vote. There is hope. We sent a message. Onward.