Now, Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh became almost official on Friday, October 5th after Susan Collins voiced her support. One day later, he was confirmed, and the unofficial ceremony was on Monday, October 8th. One week ago.
The dust has settled in the seven days since, but what does this process tell us? There are short, medium, and longer-term lessons we learned. The short-run has to do with the November 6th Midterm Elections. Who is more fired up? Democrats threw the kitchen sink, and more, yet still came up short. Republicans showed a unified, angry front, which was something the GOP had not displayed since Obamacare’s passage. Both bases became enraged, yet polling provides a few logical scenarios.
Midterm Scenario One is the Republican Party has become united under Trump for the first time, picked up moderate voters from the left, and Independents during the process. Polling supports this when you take a look at the jump in Senate races in Nevada, Arizona, North Dakota, and Tennessee post-Kavanaugh. Republicans have gained by sizable margins.
Midterm Scenario Two is the Blue Wave is still alive with a very fired up Democratic base, along with their newly enlisted voters from an exceptional two-year ground game. Women, and in particular, white women with college degrees have left the Republican Party in droves, mainly due to Trump’s bombastic rhetoric, and Democrats will solidly win back the House, but still lose a seat or two in the Senate.
Midterm Scenario Three is the turnout from the usual attendees in Midterms is consistent with past years, coupled with a small bump in new voters from the Democrat ground game. Women split, with some women in states voting blue, where other women stay red. The House barely breaks for Democrats, or even stays close to Republican control, and the Senate gains three or four seats for the Republicans. Turnout isn’t as high as originally thought, but both parties applaud and claim victory. The real loser is the average American that genuinely wants and yearns for a lack of partisanship. This voter has become disenfranchised from our divisive two-party system, biased media, and repulsive display of behavior from both sides. The voter stays worried about healthcare and our economy, but feels no party or politician truly has their families best interests in mind.
This leads us to the mid-ranging effects from the Kavanaugh confirmation. A lot of America votes moderate, truly wishes our country would allow for independent-minded voices, and doesn’t get that fired up on any issue the NY/DC beltway tells the country is so important. The scars from Kavanaugh will linger with the country. The middle, moderate, independent voters will further distance themselves from our divisive system and biased media. The right and left will further alienate these voters, as well as move even more apart from one another. The anger and vitriol continue to rise between the parties, which will ultimately experience another climax in November of 2020.
That takes us to our last examination, which is the long-term effect from this confirmation. The month will never be forgotten, and the scars will remain forever. The reputations will always be stained, and the divisiveness will linger on. This was a bad moment for America, and an even worse moment for our political parties. The path was always moving in the wrong direction, and it most certainly is heading down this wrong direction at an even faster pace, now. How do the wheels stay on, and the brakes stay equipped for this ever-moving, rapidly intensifying, downhill pace? Someone needs to rise up in America and become our great unifier. The door is wide open. Even wider now than it was two-months ago. That person is among us in our country, and the place is ripe for the taking.