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Fri Nov 9, 2018, 02:57 PM

Post-Election Numbers

I like numbers. Always have, so long as I can remember. Even on a local level, they are important. When I served on the local school board, for example, even though the superintendent had a strong dislike for me, he trusted me on how the numbers played with the public, in terms of passing a budget. You have to take other things into consideration – including social- economic issues – and have an understanding of the vote totals from past budgets, in order to be able to present a budget that will pass.

Now, here's an interesting number: 1974. If we take into account federal, state, and local elections, Democrats won more mid-term elections in 2018 than we have since 1974. I think that helps to put into the proper perspective just how powerful the Blue Wave was this week. In 1974, of course, it was in large part a response to Richard Nixon's humiliation; in 2018, a response to Trump's corruption.

I worked on four contests this year. The candidates I worked for won all four. (I did not work on my son's local campaign, in which he won as well.) I cannot say I worked harder than ever before, as I am old and have been dealing with health issues. However, I was encouraged by the hard work of a number of college students. As an old man, nothing makes me happier.

There are many, many people who worked much harder than me on elections where Democratic candidates did not win. Their efforts are extremely important. For what we all participated in was democracy in action. And we need to keep that momentum going.

Back in 1974, citizens were concerned by what was called “the imperial presidency.” Kennedy family historian Arthur Schlesinger, Jr., had published a book with that title the year before. He documented how most presidents – Democrats as well as republicans – had expanded presidential powers beyond what the Constitution intended, always justifying it by claims of national security in times of war.

Today, this same phenomenon is taking place under Trump, although in this case, the president has an “undeclared” war on the Constitution and our form of federal government. He continues to attack the institutions of the government, the free press, and the rule of law. Firing Sessions was an expected attempt to interfere with the Mueller investigation; appointing Whitaker is proof positive.

The potential for Whitaker to abuse this position to protect Trump and others – the exact purpose for Trump appointing him – is real. It presents a threat to the rule of law. It may be that entities outside the executive branch can prevent him from doing so, but there is no question that obstruction is his primary goal.

Still, in the current context, it is actually better that Democrats will control the House of Representatives in 2018-2020, than the Senate. If the republicans ran the House, there would be no chance of them impeaching Trump, and sending it to the Senate. But the Democrats can, if the Mueller Report documents the just cause to do so. (It will.) Whitaker may attempt to hide the report, but the House can access it.

Then, Senate republicans will face a test that surpasses that in their ethical failure on Kavanaugh. The 2020 elections in the Senate will hold a greater opportunity for Democrats, regardless of whatever Whitaker may or may not do. Thus, the Senate republicans will be forced to make a decision – not based upon ethics or the rule of law, but entirely upon self-preservation: do they want to hitch their re-election hopes on Trump's wagon?

And that brings us back to numbers. The 2018 elections shows the power of democracy begins at the grass roots' level. In order to repair the damage that Trump has done, and continues to do, it is essential that the Democrats in the grass roots remain active now and in the days to come. The public demonstrations in support of Mr. Mueller are outstanding. But we need to apply pressure as individuals on the current House and Senate, including republicans in office. Phone calls and e-mails are good, but actual postcards and letters are even better. Let's increase those numbers.

I suspect that Mr. Mueller is preparing to file at least two more indictments soon; I'm hoping for one to be unsealed today, though it may not happen until late next week. At least one is currently “sealed” in status. There is nothing Whitaker can do to stop it. But, if not before another is filed (which I believe that Mr. Rosenstein has already given the green light to), Whitaker will almost certainly attempt to try to derail the on-going investigation.

Our side, however, is not only stronger, but we are right. Let's continue to exercise our strength. It's the right thing to do.

Peace,
H2O Man

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Arrow 22 replies Author Time Post
Reply Post-Election Numbers (Original post)
H2O Man Nov 2018 OP
Funtatlaguy Nov 2018 #1
H2O Man Nov 2018 #2
eleny Nov 2018 #3
H2O Man Nov 2018 #4
eleny Nov 2018 #9
H2O Man Nov 2018 #14
eleny Nov 2018 #22
Hermit-The-Prog Nov 2018 #5
H2O Man Nov 2018 #7
spanone Nov 2018 #6
H2O Man Nov 2018 #8
coeur_de_lion Nov 2018 #10
H2O Man Nov 2018 #11
coeur_de_lion Nov 2018 #12
H2O Man Nov 2018 #15
coeur_de_lion Nov 2018 #19
ms liberty Nov 2018 #13
H2O Man Nov 2018 #16
Hortensis Nov 2018 #17
H2O Man Nov 2018 #18
kentuck Nov 2018 #20
H2O Man Nov 2018 #21

Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2018, 03:00 PM

1. 2 indictments. I'll guess Stone and Trump Jr?

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Response to Funtatlaguy (Reply #1)

Fri Nov 9, 2018, 03:04 PM

2. Those would be

good guesses, in my opinion.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2018, 03:31 PM

3. Congratulations to your son!

..... .....

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Response to eleny (Reply #3)

Fri Nov 9, 2018, 03:57 PM

4. Thank you!

Although we live in a small town with a large republican majority, he won by a vote total of 514 to 5. And, of course, he wonders who those five were!

I've been showing him and some others the numbers in our region. Some republicans have posted NYS maps that are almost entirely red …..but that is based only on the race for governor. (Sore losers, as Cuomo won easily.) In terms of other elections, including for the House and state & local offices, there is a lot of blue on the map. There will be seats in the state assembly that Democrats can win in upcoming elections. I've identified several for 2020 and 2022, that I'll be concentrating on.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #4)

Fri Nov 9, 2018, 05:38 PM

9. Lol, I'd be wondering, too!

Well, if he was running against someone it would at least be that candidate and their family. Nice that upstate is enjoying some more blue, btw.

Out here in Colorado we'll have a complete executive branch of blue. And we flipped the senate to blue so we'll have a blue state house. One of my big worries was the SOS. We haven't had a Dem SOS since the 1960s. In our county, even the county clerk Republican lost to the Dem. We had signs all down the front of our place even for everyone including county treasurer and that Dems won. Lots of straight ticket voting except for a very few.

We'll still support them again next time. But now we'll do the same as you. Take a bead on red seats to concentrate on for support of all kinds. It'll almost be like picking weeds!

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Response to eleny (Reply #9)

Sat Nov 10, 2018, 11:01 AM

14. There were late-night

efforts to steal the lawn signs of local Democrats in our region. These efforts intensified in the 48 hours before the elections. It was a wasted effort upon their part.

Three of the four last town justices here were removed from office by the state for corruption. All were republicans. There was also an effort to hire a part-time police officer to be in the town court, to handle some of those unhappy to be accused of a crime. Thus, most republicans were actually happy when my son ran, because they figure his being a state Golden Gloves champion will calm the audience. Plus, he's a social worker, with a good understanding of human nature. Still, there were a couple attempts to either get someone from the alt-right on the ballot, or to do a write-in campaign. I'd venture that the write-in campaign failed.

The local/area Democrats have already been talking about having one of my daughters run for office in 2020. She's giving it serious consideration. I pity anyone who would run against her! And my daughter in Boston is thinking of running for office in the future. All four of my kids are smarter and more capable than their old man, which gives me confidence for the future.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #14)

Sun Nov 11, 2018, 03:53 PM

22. What a time!

When it seems that young people are looking at running for office as the "in thing" to pursue using their talents. Taking the helm. Your confidence is well placed.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2018, 04:50 PM

5. k&r

Well done.

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Response to Hermit-The-Prog (Reply #5)

Fri Nov 9, 2018, 05:01 PM

7. Thank you!

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2018, 05:00 PM

6. K&R...



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Response to spanone (Reply #6)

Fri Nov 9, 2018, 05:01 PM

8. Thanks!

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2018, 06:00 PM

10. Wonderful essay

And as always you've had a soothing effect on my psyche. I tend to concentrate on the negative and I often need someone to point out the overwhelming positive things that I gloss over.

I didn't realize you were a numbers guy. You probably have noticed I'm an accountant.

I live in Florida and we always seem to be in a world of crap when it comes to elections. I live in a red area but the blue area further south as usual has trouble keeping track of and counting their ballots. They are not numbers people clearly.

Looking forward to a couple indictments. After Don Jr. is indicted trump won't be able to do much obstructing. I hope anyway.

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Response to coeur_de_lion (Reply #10)

Fri Nov 9, 2018, 08:25 PM

11. Well thank you.

This week's elections were a powerful display of Democratic Party strength. It's funny: I'm glad the alt-right doesn't grasp this reality. Or they'd be acting out. They inhabit an intellectual cocoon that keeps them convinced that everything is a victory for Trump. Sad that they do not have even a shallow grasp of the Constitution.

I used to be able to do "numbers" in my head. Anymore, I have to do things on paper. For anything important, my youngest daughter looks it over for me.

Always remember this: it's the FBI and federal prosecutors investigating Trump & friends. Mr. Mueller is perhaps the single best federal prosecutor in the nation's history. He understands the psychology of criminals. Hence, he has spread significant parts of the total Trump & Co investigation to others. The Cohen example in the SDNY is only the one the public is aware of -- but it isn't the only one. More, he has encouraged the sharing of information with state attorneys general.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #11)

Fri Nov 9, 2018, 08:36 PM

12. Really encouraging

You have a very good grasp of the many pieces in play here. I can't keep it all straight and whenever I hear about something that threatens the investigation I freak out a little.

I do have faith in Mueller. He seems methodical, precise, thorough. And I do believe he is a numbers guy as well. My favorite thing about him is that he doesn't seek publicity or leak anything about his strategy. He just quietly gets it done.

My opinion, the freakouts we've witnessed past few days from Fredo are partly due to the fact that he knows his son will be arrested soon. Midterms have an awful lot to do with it but his son would be his main worry. Not that he worries about his son at all. He loves no one, least of all himself. No, he's thinking about how bad he will look when the kid is arrested.

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Response to coeur_de_lion (Reply #12)

Sat Nov 10, 2018, 11:18 AM

15. Perhaps we will hear

that Don Jr was a mere coffee boy?

One of the things I find fascinating is that Trump et al say that Mr. Comey and Mr. Mueller are "close friends." That is not accurate. They had a good relationship at a specific time -- the days when both were prepared to resign, along with twelve other high-ranking officials in the DOJ and FBI, during the W administration. Other than that, they have a common friend, Patrick Fitzgerald.

Mr. Fitzgerald will be remembered here for prosecuting Scooter Libby. Also, for urging the House to investigate Cheney's role in the Plame scandal. He believed there was enough evidence to impeach and convict Cheney, though not quite enough to insure a criminal conviction.

Immediately after being fired, Mr. Comey contacted Mr. Fitzgerald. Patrick, for example, was one of two sources to tell Mr. Comey that it was legal to leak parts of his notes per the weird conversations with Trump. And Mr. Fitzgerald has a close friendship with Robert Mueller.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #15)

Sat Nov 10, 2018, 11:58 AM

19. can't wait for trump

to disavow his own son.

"I don't really know him very well. I just met him a few times, we aren't close."

I find it interesting that Fitzgerald and Mueller are good friends. Maybe Fitz is helping Mueller avoid the pitfalls of the Plame investigation.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2018, 09:47 PM

13. K&R. Wise words, WaterMan. Congrats to your son! n/t

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Response to ms liberty (Reply #13)

Sat Nov 10, 2018, 11:20 AM

16. Thank you!

Perhaps my favorite thing from these elections is that young people -- including a lot of college students -- were invested in the campaigns. And there is nothing like winning to reinforce their passion for politics.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sat Nov 10, 2018, 11:30 AM

17. Good summary of what's ahead. I'm greatly encouraged

by the new voters who took a stand against the trumpists in and out of government and what they're doing. The suburbs are now majority blue, and even rural areas are slightly less red. The biggest part of what went wrong with our nation, our electorate, is starting to say no to authoritarian viciousness and "yes, what's the fuss?" to diversity.

But the great battle for the future of our nation continues. Fortunately, to a real degree Trump himself is our greatest asset, and 2020 is looking very bad for them and very positive for us. But we know the great powers allied against us on the right will stop at nothing to win.

You think I should write some letters this year. Will do. Off to Amazon to order a nice box of stationery with a patriotic theme.

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Response to Hortensis (Reply #17)

Sat Nov 10, 2018, 11:54 AM

18. Thank you!

I love the idea of stationary with a patriotic theme! I'll have to get some. Thank you for that great idea!

Late Tuesday night, I got a message from a college student from Ithaca. She said the election victories were great, but that now, the real work begins. I like that attitude!

In my opinion, a fair amount of the cowardly republican "leadership" knows exactly what you said about Trump helping us. They are going to have to decide who they want in the Oval Office in 2020 -- Trump or Pence.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sat Nov 10, 2018, 12:18 PM

20. "do they want to hitch their re-election hopes on Trump's wagon?"

I think a lot of folks here will change their attitude about impeachment as soon as the evidence is made public . It will be the Republicans that will feel the pressure of trying to defend him.

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Response to kentuck (Reply #20)

Sun Nov 11, 2018, 12:20 PM

21. Exactly right!

As bad as the evidence that is publicly known is -- and it is indeed bad -- what will come out in Mr. Mueller's report is far worse. Add to it the information coming from the SDNY, and defending Trump will be costly for republicans in 2020.

It's also important for people to understand the standing of the federal grand jury. It has a status separate from that of any of the Department of Justice. Federal judges have a long history of supporting the integrity of these grand juries when it comes to investigating cases. This is because they have authority through the judicial branch, rather than being exclusively under executive authority per the federal prosecutor.

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