Rejoice and Be Glad

Becky O'Malley
Friday November 09, 2018 - 03:02:00 PM

UPDATE, 11/16: The final election results might show up today, Friday, so we are going to delay both my comments and those of others until the weekend.  

Well, the plan for today was to discuss the local election results, but it’s apparent that the 100% sure bottom line will elude us for a good while yet for most races around here. I tend to believe Rob Wrenn’s analyses which appear in these pages, and he thinks not much will change from the early reports. However, just to (lazily) avoid wasted effort I’ll hold my comments for a day or so to let the dust settle.

As a substitute, however, I’d like to share with Planet readers some extracts from the handy summary of The Good, Good News from all over the country as compiled and circulated by vigorous feminist activist Susie Tompkins Buell, with links to the main stories.

Read it and chortle, no matter what bad things might have happened since: 




  • Following Tuesday’s elections, Democrats have gained control of seven legislative chambers, flipping the State Senates in Colorado, Maine, and New York; the House in Minnesota; and both chambers in New Hampshire. Connecticut’s Senate, previously evenly split, is now held by Democrats. We broke Republican supermajorities in Michigan and Pennsylvania’s Senates and both chambers in North Carolina. Democrats now completely control all three statehouse branches in 13 states and Washington, D.C., compared to the seven statehouses where they held trifecta control before Election Day. New York Times
  • The youth vote turnout for the 2018 Midterms was higher than any midterm election in a quarter-century. NextGen America
  • More openly lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people were elected on Tuesday night than in any previous election. New York Times
  • The freshman class of the new Congress will boast the largest number of military veterans in nearly a decade. Reuters
  • 27 NRA backed candidates lost in this midterm elections – more than ever before. Change the Ref
  • In a historic victory for female candidates, at least 117 women won elections across the country, taking over high-level political positions including House seats, Senate seats, and governorships. Next year, a record number of women candidates, most of them Democrats, will be in Congress. BuzzFeed
  • In Michigan, Democrats ran women candidates for every statewide office on the ballot, and Democratic women won all of them. Detroit Free Press
  • Special counsel Robert Mueller is set to emerge from his midterm campaign hibernation period with a powerful new ally as House Democrats surged back to the majority in Tuesday’s elections. Politico
  • Maxine Waters, Adam Schiff and Eljiah Cummings are among the top Democrats poised to take over key House panels following Election Day. Los Angeles Times
  • trump endorsed 33 candidates on Twitter. 21 of them lost. CNN


  • Democrats have flipped 30 GOP-held seats and counting in the House. New York Times
  • Sharice Davids of Kansas, a member of the Ho-Chunk Nation, and New Mexico’s Deb Haaland, an enrolled member of the Pueblo of Laguna, became the first Native American women elected to Congress. CNN
  • Rashida Tlaib, a Palestinian-American from Michigan, and Ilhan Omar, a Somali American from Minnesota, will become the first Muslim-American women to serve in Congress. Vice
  • Veronica Escobar and Sylvia Garcia became the first-ever Latinas elected to represent Texas in the U.S. House of Representatives. Texas Tribune
  • Lauren Underwood, a 32-year-old registered nurse, defeated a four-term Republican – and will become the first woman and the first African-American to represent Illinois’s 14th District. HuffPost
  • Democrat Jahana Hayes made history on Tuesday, becoming the first African-American woman elected to represent Connecticut in Congress. Hartford Courant
  • Democrat Ayanna Pressley has become Massachusetts' first black woman elected to the House. The Guardian
  • Six years after losing her son to gun violence, gun-control activist Lucy McBath won her midterm election to represent Georgia's 6th congressional district. Elle
  • The former Staten Island district attorney who refused to indict the officer responsible for the 2014 chokehold death of Eric Garner lost his seat in Congress to Democrat Max Rose. NY Daily News
  • Iowa’s Abby Finkenauer and New York’s Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, both 29-years-old, will become the youngest women ever in Congress as new House representatives. Hello Giggles
  • Kim Schrier, a pediatrician, won her race on Tuesday – to become the first Democrat to hold Washington’s 8th District since it was created. K5 News
  • In Illinois’s 6th District, which has been Republican since the 1970s, Sean Casten, a Democratic businessman, unseated the former Republican chief deputy whip Peter Roskam. The New Yorker
  • Democrat Kendra Horn defeated incumbent Republican Steve Russell in Oklahoma's 5th Congressional District –flipping the district blue for the first time since the 1970s. The Hill
  • For the first time in three decades, Florida’s 27th congressional district will be represented by a Democrat with a win for Donna Shalala. CNN


  • Democratic Representative Jacky Rosen beat her Republican opponent Senator Dean Heller in Nevada’s Senate race –flipping the seat from red to blue. Business Insider
  • Beto O’Rourke came within three percentage points of defeating Ted Cruz – the best performance in decades by a Democratic Senate candidate in Texas. Washington Post
  • Florida’s Senate race is headed to a recount, with Democrat Senator Bill Nelson behind by only 0.26 percentage points. Tampa Bay Times
  • Democratic Senate candidate Kyrsten Sinema has taken a narrow lead over Republican opponent Martha McSally in the Arizona Senate race as officials continue to tally mail-in ballots. Washington Post


  • Democrats flipped 7 governorships on Tuesday, a significant achievement that could help undo years of harmful Republican policy – particularly when it comes to the gerrymandering efforts that help keep GOP politicians in control. ThinkProgress
  • Stacey Abrams vows to fight on as Georgia’s governor’s race remains undecided. NPR
  • Florida’s governor’s race is not quite over as Democrat Andrew Gillum contemplates a recount. Atlanta Black Star
  • Democrat Lou Leon Guerrero, the current president of the Bank of Guam, has been elected the first female governor of the U.S. island territory. TIME
  • Democrat Janet Mills won her race on Tuesday, to become the first woman to serve as governor in Maine. WBUR
  • Albuquerque congresswoman Michelle Luján Grisham will become New Mexico's first Latina Democratic governor after defeating Representative Steve Pearce. Santa Fe New Mexican
  • Colorado voters on Tuesday elected Democrat Jared Polis, making him the first openly gay person elected governor in America. Coloradoan
  • Democrat Gretchen Whitmer defeated Republican Attorney General Bill Schuette in Michigan’s gubernatorial election, ending eight years of GOP control in a state trump narrowly won in 2016. Politico
  • Democrat Tony Evers, Wisconsin’s state superintendent of public education and a former teacher, won the governor’s race against incumbent Scott Walker – who has undermined teachers unions and supported the underfunding of public education in the state throughout his career as governor. ThinkProgress
  • County Commissioner Steve Sisolak upended a rising Republican star to become the Silver State’s first Democratic governor in two decades. Las Vegas Review
  • Kris Kobach, the nation’s leading voter suppression architect, lost his bid for governor to Democrat Laura Kelly. ThinkProgress
  • Democrat Gavin Newsom defeated Republican John Cox in California’s gubernatorial race. San Francisco Chronicle
  • Democrat Eleni Kounalakis won the race to become the first female to be elected lieutenant governor of California. Greek Reporter
  • Democrat Mandela Barnes will become the first African-American lieutenant governor in Wisconsin history. WTMJ
  • Democrat Garlin Gilchrist will become the first black lieutenant governor in the history of Michigan. Chicago Tribune


  • Democrats flipped more than 300 state legislative seats. Washington Post
  • Moderate-to-liberal candidates won state supreme court elections in Arkansas, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina and Ohio. Governing
  • Democrats captured a majority of state attorney general seats (27-23). Bloomberg
  • Democrats flipped two secretary of state seats. Governing
  • Ed Emmett held the position of Harris County judge for 11 years – on Tuesday, 27-year-old Colombian immigrant and Stanford University graduate Lina Hidalgo beat him by nearly 18,000 votes. Houston Chronicle
  • All 19 black women who ran for various judicial seats in Harris County won their races on Tuesday, marking the single biggest victory for black women in the county's history. Cosmopolitan
  • Alaska voters rejected a judge who signed off on a plea deal that let a man serve only one year of home confinement for assaulting an Alaska Native woman. CBS
  • Leticia James won the New York's Attorney General race becoming New York's first black woman ever elected to the job. WNYC
  • Mary Ann Wilder-Vivians won her race for Carthage, Mississippi – she will become the city’s first African-American female mayor. MS Democratic Party
  • Safiya Wazir, a 27-year-old mother of two whose family fled persecution from the Taliban in Afghanistan, beat out Republican Dennis Soucy to earn a seat in the New Hampshire House of Representatives. Concord Monitor
  • Tom Sullivan, whose son Alex died in the Aurora 2012 mass shooting, won his election for Colorado’s House District 37 seat. Everytown
  • Zach Wahls, who seven years ago stood before the Iowa House of Representatives and delivered a stirring speech defending his two lesbian mothers, became a state lawmaker himself on Tuesday. HuffPost
  • Kim Davis, the Kentucky county clerk made famous by her refusal to sign marriage licenses for gay couples, lost on Tuesday in her reelection bid for the Rowan County clerkship to Democratic challenger Elwood Caudill Jr. Lexington Herald

Ballot Measures

  • Potentially altering the election landscape in a key swing state, Florida voters approved a ballot measure that will enable more than 1 million ex-felons to regain their voting rights. PBS
  • Maryland voters backed a constitutional amendment to allow residents to show up at the polls, register and cast a ballot, all on Election Day. Baltimore Sun
  • Michigan voters approved an amendment to bring automatic voter registration, same-day registration, post-election audits, no-excuse absentee voting, straight-ticket voting and protections for military and overseas voters. ACLU
  • Nevadans approved a measure to make voter registration automatic when a person applies for an identification card or a driver's license. The Hill
  • Michigan, one of the most gerrymandered states in the Union, overwhelmingly approved a state constitutional amendment which provides that future legislative maps will be drawn by an independent commission. ThinkProgress
  • Missouri voters passed an amendment to end gerrymandering & diminish lobbyist influence. KSHB
  • Residents in Idaho, Nebraska, and Utah supported ballot measures to extend Medicaid benefits to more low-income adults. NPR
  • Oregon voters voted no on a measure that would have banned the state's Medicaid program from covering abortions for low-income women. The State
  • Louisiana voters overwhelmingly passed a constitutional amendment to require unanimous juries in all felony trials and ending an aberrant practice rooted in the Jim Crow era. The Advocate
  • Voters in Nashville overwhelmingly approved a ballot measure to create a community oversight board to investigate claims of misconduct against police officers. CBS
  • Colorado voters passed Amendment A, which officially ended the state’s ability to extract labor from people inside its prisons’ walls without pay. ACLU
  • Michigan voters legalized the sale and use of marijuana – and Missouri and Utah voters legalized medical marijuana. New York Times
  • Both Missouri and Arkansas voted to raise the minimum wage – to $12 by 2023 in Missouri, and to $11 by 2021 in Arkansas. New York Magazine
  • Voters in San Francisco approved Proposition C, which will levy a new tax on businesses posting gross annual receipts of over $50 million and allocate the funds toward homelessness services, like housing and eviction defense. The Intelligencer
  • Voters across the country on Tuesday made ballot decisions to help fund public schools, which are increasingly starved for resources. Most of them were successful, with six education initiatives passing overall, in places like Seattle, Washington; Georgia; Maryland; Montana; and two in the state of Maine. ThinkProgress
  • A state gun-regulations ballot measure (the only one on the Nov. 6 ballot anywhere in the country) seeking to make Washington’s firearms laws among the strictest in the country passed with 60 percent of the vote in election-night returns. Seattle Times
  • Voters in Massachusetts chose to keep a law that protects transgender people from discrimination. Vox
  • Oregon voters rejected a measure that would have repealed the state's sanctuary law that bars local law enforcement agencies from spending state and local resources on enforcing federal immigration laws. Willamette Week
  • Floridia voters banned offshore oil and gas drilling in Florida’s state waters with the passage of an amendment that prohibits oil and gas exploration activities three miles into the Atlantic Ocean and nine miles into the Gulf of Mexico. Center for Biological Diversity
  • California and Florida both passed animal welfare laws by a landslide. Global Animal
  • Nevada became the 10th state to scrap the "tampon tax," making menstrual products exempt from state sales taxes. Today