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OPINION

A Reflection On Election 2022

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
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AP Photo/Keith Srakocic

In Martin Scorsese’s Oscar winning film The Departed, the Irish mafia infiltrate the Boston State Police, and the Police infiltrate the Irish Mafia. Toward the end of the movie, the undercover police officer throws off a hit job, and the mafia boss gets shot. Looking up at the undercover cop, he asks “What the hell happened?”

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We are hearing lots of prognosticators weigh in on the Red Wave that was and was not. No doubt they will fit the outcomes into their narrative. Derek Hunter goes after Lindsey Graham. Neo-Never Trumper Ann Coulter is blaming Trump (of course). MAGA-endorsed candidates point the blame at the Republican leadership in Washington.

I suggest we just look at the evidence, and draw conclusions from there.

First of all, the red states got redder. A number of states now have supermajorities, or their supermajorities are more conservative. Other states saw state supreme courts and other down ballot races get redder, too.

But what about the blue states? New York resisted the blue pushback because of Lee Zeldin’s team-player gubernatorial campaign pulling up the GOP ticket across the state. Strangely enough, even in deep blue Hawaii, Republicans gained a few state legislative seats!

Michigan: their abortion amendment helped the Dems, big time.

Pennsylvania: mail-in balloting, plus a diehard commitment to the blue team, which means that Democrats would vote for Uncle Festering Vegetable (who supports fracking!) over Dr. Oz, who walked away from Trump, who did not resonate with working class voters, who whiffed on abortion, and who was a dual-citizen Muslim, which may have alienated working-class voters. 

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Roe v. Wade played a larger role in this election than people realized, but not in a uniform way. In the red states, the conservative promoters for life got a major boost. Every pro-life Republican governor won big. How does one explain Montana, though, and Kansas earlier on, where pro-life amendments failed? Big money and big lies. The fight for life is not over following the overturning of Roe v. Wade.

I will say this, though: if Roe v. Wade caused Republicans to lose some seats, it was totally worth it. Conservatives need to think about changing the culture, not just politicians. Democrats knew they would lose seats when the shoved Obamacare down our throats. They played the long game, and see where they are. Culture, not just party color makes the difference.

The state of Georgia passed strong election integrity reforms. Kemp won outright, but Walker is struggling. So, how do we explain Georgia?

Governor Kemp is a quieter version of DeSantis. No one wants to hear this, but it’s true. He played the long game, lined up great political support over the last year, got the best campaign team imaginable, and played offense when Trump announced a primary challenge. During the latest legislative session in Atlanta, he enacted considerable reforms, saved taxpayers money, AND fought the culture war. He was competent and confident. And he was the incumbent. Herschel Walker was taking on an incumbent, so right away there was going to be trouble. Plus the fact that the Democrats see the greater prize in maintaining power in the judicial-confirming US Senate, and you have the real reasons why Walker hasn’t won in a walk.

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What happened in Kansas? Most people are not aware of this, but there has been a strong, swampy contingent in the Sunflower State for a long time. The previous governor, Sam Brownback tried to be DeSantis before he was an executive, implementing massive tax cuts and other reforms during his tenure. The Kansas GOPe Swamp did not like that, and they have beenpretty comfy with a “centrist” Democrat remaining governor –and of course, there’s the incumbency factor.

And what about Arizona? The Grand Canyon State still has a grand chasm problem of voter irregularities and dysfunction. It is astounding to me how the voter problems in 2020 still were not solved this year.

And herein lies the largest rub: voter problems, voter irregularities, and voter fraud.

This problem accounts for all the issues and outcomes in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Arizona, Nevada, California, Oregon, New York State, Alaska, and so on. Even in Texas, there were ballot problems in the (what a coincidence) the more Republican-dominated precincts in otherwise liberal Harris County. Yes indeed, COVID in 2019 gave us a massive mail-in Election 2020. Two years later, most Republicans are still not doing something about this problem. I am really disgusted with Arizona politicians, who still maintained a GOP trifecta in Phoenix, and yet here we are today. Will there be a tomorrow?

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For the sake of argument, let’s put aside the fraud issue and just focus on something more basic: elections should be decided by in-person voting, and people voting on one day, not people mailing in a ballot over one or two months, with the final tally taking another month. This whole expansion of Election Day to Election Season to Election Year (if you throw in all the court cases, the back-and-forth wrangling among the political parties and the county and state bureaucracies) is just unconscionable. Tucker Carlson’s damning indictment of this sclerotic failure to count casts the issue correctly: even third-world countries require Voter ID in most places, and they certainly don’t allow ballots getting mailed to people’s homes, whether they are dead, alive, or just plain imaginary. The United States can’t even meet that standard?

The voter problem has been fixed in the red states, for the most part, hence they got redder. The blue states are awash in voter irregularities and no safeguards, hence it was easier to harvest, trafficking, collect, and cure ballots for the win.

If Republicans want to win, they need to stop the cheat, or they need to outdo the cheaters by the new rules, and then fix the rules when they get back in power. And this starts in Washington DC. Right now, Republicans should be drafting their own version of the “For the People Act.”

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