(NewsNation) — I have not been this impressed by an election in some time, but it has almost nothing to do with what you are hearing everywhere else. We saw major indications that the game is changing.
The two parties are still battling for control, but what we saw is that the races were not controlled by either one turning out big numbers of their bases. It was a declaration of independents. Those whom I call free agents. Those with open minds and open hearts. Those not tied to team or tribe. Those about the nation, not mere nationalism.
The fastest growing part of the electorate are those of us who do not identify as Democrats or Republicans. You were voting on people and policies more than party, and that is a great sign. That’s why the polls had it wrong about several things, including reproductive rights and voters making sure many of the people who denied the results of the last election were not rewarded with election wins.
In this election, voters were not your typical partisans. We see the number of independents increasing from the last election. We see this even adjusting for a short-term decrease largely explained by people wanting to vote in primaries in states where you must be a party member.
A note about that: It’s more proof we need to get parties out of primaries. Remember, the Constitution doesn’t mandate it, and neither do federal or even most state laws. It is the parties and those in power from them that keep the situation the way it is. But things are changing. Ranked choice voting and open primary movements are spreading in states.
We saw it in the camouflage wave, as well: Veterans voting and running in big numbers, and not your average party-first faux patriots. They vote their mind and their measure of the man or woman running. As candidates, they are, for the most part, about loyalty to God and Constitution more than fealty to a party.
We see the change also in young people breaking so hard for Democrats, roughly 2/3 of them. But why? They were concerned about reproductive rights and they wanted leaders who respect democracy. The young also don’t scare as easily as the rest of us with mortgages and concerns about child care costs.
Now, you are not hearing about any of this as much as you are the horse race between the parties, and that is for good and bad reasons. We do need to figure out who is in control of Congress, but independents growing influence as outsiders does not suit those profiting from and covering the game.
That takes me to two distractions out there. Both are aspects of the game to expose.
Former President Donald Trump just made a really good play. He slammed Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and the media outlets that have been fawning over DeSantis at Trump’s expense. In a statement Thursday night, he again called the governor “Ron DeSanctimonius” and falsely claimed he sent the FBI to stop vote fraud in DeSantis’ 2018 race.
Of course, Trump is trying to hurt DeSantis. But that is not too effective so far, and I’d argue not even his main goal. Instead, Trump wants to distract from the midterm election results by starting a fight. Don’t take the bait, DeSantis. I know your press guys are overwhelmed by media, but don’t take the bait. This is a great play by Trump, even if it does show that he is not about the party so much as about his MAGA base and his own interests. There is no “we” in Trump.
Also, his assertion that he saved DeSantis’ race from stolen votes by sending in the FBI is baloney. The FBI was in Florida during that race in 2018 to ensure compliance with voting rights laws, not to stop any vote stealing. It’s a ploy by Trump to give more fuel to the narrative of rigged elections. Even though so many of you rejected the deniers of the last election, that same cabal is trying that game again.
In Arizona, there are furious fringe players up in arms about how slow the count is going there, zeroing in on Maricopa County. There are wild claims that are devoid of any facts. Let’s not play that game, either.
The views expressed in this article are those of the author, and not of NewsNation.