Most Americans are apathetic about voting in the Mid-terms and it has had disastrous consequences.

Vote in the Mid-terms
Courtesy David Horsey & the LA Times

Here’s a reminder of who exactly is coming out to vote in the Mid-terms; a minority. Most Americans are inexplicably apathetic about voting in general and voting in the Mid-terms in particular. These elections traditionally have much lower voter turnout and it has had disastrous consequences.

As witnessed in 2010, with record low voter turnouts, the Tea Party Tidal Wave rolled through the country. Subsequently, a relatively small faction of Americans managed to throw monkey wrench after monkey wrench into the works of government.

Republicans have run on a remarkably small platform. Their original intent was to ride the failure of Obamacare, but it is more apparent every day that the Affordable Care Act is working.

Then the GOP did everything they could to turn the Benghazi attacks into a scandal. They stayed with this for 20+ months spreading fear and division throughout the American populace. When they were proven wrong, they dropped it and walked away. Nobody held them accountable for essentially aiding the terrorists in spreading fear and mistrust in the nation.

Republicans went on to scream about child refugees, Executive Orders, and Ebola. They have done everything they can to scare Americans. They have not offered any solutions to issues that weren’t ridiculous. Everything has been travel ban this, close the border that. Build a big fence! That’s the ticket, yeah!

Vote in the Mid-termsSo if the GOP has no solutions to anything, what is it that they have actually accomplished? Making it harder to vote. Some Republican states have implemented sweeping voter suppression laws. Texas, Mississippi, and in any number of Red States, Voter IDs are required, polling stations are shut down, early voting is cancelled, and their pet television network makes up lies to entice a conservative base to scream “Voter Fraud!”

Hilarious, considering Georgia required tens of thousands of voters, mostly black and Latino, to register in order to vote, and then promptly lost those registrations. This will most likely block these people from voting.

So who is coming out to vote? Gun nuts. Fox News viewers. Religious fundamentalists. Conspiracy theorists. Believers of “Cultural Marxism.” Male chauvinists. The ignorant. The uninformed. The racist.

None of these people represent the average American. But as the average American isn’t likely to come out to vote, this small faction of America, using the volume of their opinions to mask the comparative lack of volume in their numbers, are going to speak for everyone.

Yes, that means you.

Here’s the part where we say that not all Republicans are religious zealots, or racists, or gun nuts. But those factions all happen to vote conservative. As hate is a great motivator in elections, and these subsets of American society are filled with hate, this will benefit Republicans.

These are the people who get up early on Election Day, and organize their families, friends, and communities in order to go vote. They will be there. They will vote.

And what exactly are they voting against? The Stock Market is at record heights, unemployment is down, gas prices are way down. The Affordable Care Act is working, and Osama Bin Laden is dead. They are running on villainizing Obama. End of list.

Hey, remember when Mitt Romney said in 2012 that he’d reduce unemployment to almost as low as it is now? That’s why Republicans aren’t talking about the economy anymore. They can’t.

Vote in the Mid-termsThe Democrats could have easily stopped the GOP at several turns. They could have pounced on the faux scandal of Benghazi, but let the Republicans walk. They could be reminding everyone of the Shutdown, the Sequester, the least productive Congress in all of history, again, all of history, but they have all ducked and covered instead.

This should be the easiest election ever for Democrats to win. But instead they squabble and fight and desert the President. They have chosen to run scared instead of standing up to loudmouth bullies. They could have galvanized the Electorate to get angry with obstructionists, but they failed to do so.

So, it falls to the American people. As it should. But when Americans don’t turn out to vote, extremists benefit. And it very much looks like that’s what’s going to happen again in these Mid-terms. Americans have let a minority convince them that their vote doesn’t count.

This isn’t quite a done deal of course. Many races are too close to call. But many conservative candidates in these races should not even be within sniffing distance, let alone be projected to win the whole thing. Not to mention that Mid-terms traditionally go against the party of the President.

Perhaps we’ll see a huge turnout. Perhaps records will be set this year. America is certainly capable of surprising, and certainly capable of doing the right thing as well. All that really scares Republicans is voting, and that’s why they make it so hard to vote.

If we don’t vote and subsequently the Republicans win the Senate and keep the House, the message will be that obstructionism works. Lies work. Screaming cowardice works. And that will be on all of us, as it will deserve to be.

If you don’t want that to happen, then vote. It is, quite literally, the very least you can do.

“One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.” ~ Plato

Chad R. MacDonald has a degree in English literature from Cape Breton University and subsequently received a full scholarship to AMDA in New York City. He is a former security professional, veteran of the hospitality industry, and experienced in both the arts as well as administration.He has been writing all his life, likes baseball, hockey, literature, science, the arts, and marine photography.Chad lives in Brooklyn with his wife and son and their gigantic cat.

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