Tuesday, November 8, 2011

And The Votes Are In

There are a couple of bits of good news from today's elections. This election was almost entirely state and local races. While there may be other news with more than local implications, these two jumped out at me thanks to Taylor Marsh.

First, in Ohio, SB-5, the regressive law that was meant to break the public employee unions in the state, has been repealed by a substantial majority:
Unions hung a humbling defeat on Kasich, who has fast become his party’s poster boy for conservative overreach, by rolling back Senate Bill 5, a new collective bargaining law that bars public sector strikes, curtails bargaining rights for 360,000 public employees and scraps binding arbitration of management-labor disputes.

Ohio Senate Bill 5's repeal buoys Dems
This was an important victory for the public employee unions, and arguably could reverse the trend of decreased union power in politics. I think the latter will only happen if the unions learn that they must treat Democrats as potential allies, rather than as trusted friends. Unqualified support for Democrats got them where they are today, which is screwed just about every time an issue important to the unions comes up.

Still, it's a hopeful sign. Democrats thinking this is good for them need to think again - while there was an alliance between Democrats and unions at the state level, the national Democrats stayed strictly out of it. They aren't any more friendly to unions than Republicans these days.

The second bit of good news is that the Mississippi referendum to make zygotes into people has failed:
Mississippi would have become the first state to define a fertilized egg as a person, a measure which was aimed at outlawing abortion in the state but, opponents contended, would have led to all kinds of unintended consequences.

In the end, those concerns won out in a strongly anti-abortion state. The amendment trailed 59 percent to 41 percent with more than half of precincts reporting. The Associated Press has said it will fail.

Anti-abortion ‘personhood’ amendment fails in Mississippi
What's interesting is this paragraph from Aaron Blake's report:
The measure earned the support of both Republicans and Democrats in Mississippi — including both of the major parties’ nominees for governor — but some of them hesitated to support it, including outgoing Gov. Haley Barbour (R).

Anti-abortion ‘personhood’ amendment fails in Mississippi
Democrats haven't been doing jack to help women at the national level, and at least in Mississippi it appears that local Democrats want to emulate that record. One of the leading Democratic candidates in Mississippi, the nominee for governor, supported this travesty, and the outgoing Republican governor had problems with it.

Yet it will go down to defeat by a wide margin, in one of the most conservative states in the country.

Tell me again why they're worse than Republicans?

I'll vote for Democrats who actually fight for and represent progressive values. Those who don't can count on my voting for someone else. I'm not voting for the lesser of two evils any longer.

What people should take from this is that doing anything else just ends up as more of the same.

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