Texas turnout shows voters want change

opinions

March 8, 2018 - 12:00 AM

A Texas-sized turnout greeted Tuesday’s midterm elections.
Democratic voters there surged above 1 million — the first time since 1994 — and female candidates had strong showings up and down the ballot.
Breaking 25 years of apathy, Democrats fielded candidates in every Congressional district.
Texas Republicans, of course, still held sway,  with their numbers reaching half again as that of Democrats.
Rural Republicans, as in Kansas, are faithful voters and can be counted on to make a meaningful difference.
Democrats showed strong winnings among women and minority candidates. For the first time in history, two Latina women won their primary races for Congress.
For Republicans, some candidates rode to victory on the coattails of President Donald Trump.
George P. Bush, son of former Florida governor Jeb Bush, happily aligned himself with Mr. Trump to win his race for land commissioner, despite the president’s below-the-belt jabs at his dad during the 2016 campaign.
Even so, the election seemed to signal a turning point in voter engagement, proving that if Americans want change then the ballot box is their best opportunity.
That’s great news.
A healthy democracy depends on competing interests.
It also gives one pause as to whether the efforts to launch a new political party in Kansas, called the Party of the Center, has merit.
Organizers are going door to door to gather 18,000 signatures by June 1 to earn the party bonafide status. The political party is under the umbrella of a Denver-based organization called the Serve America Movement whose goal is to give centrist-based third-party candidates better campaign structures.
Kansas is one of several states to work with SAM this election year, according to campaign organizers.
Because politics today between Democrats and Republicans is so polarized,  perhaps the time is ripe for a party that puts the country first.
Tuesday’s turnout proves Americans are ready for change. Starting from the ground up sounds mighty appealing.

— Susan Lynn

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