Just did something I never thought I’d do

Actually, more like swore I’d never do. I gave financial support to a politician who:

a) is not pro-choice (although not a completely horrifying one)
b) voted for the Iraq war, and
c) is not even running in an election I’ll be voting in

For context, let me just add that this is only the second time I have ever given money to any political campaign. The last time was in 2008 when I donated to the DNC–A contribution which, by the way, never went through because it turned out my credit card was overdrawn (incidentally, I’m also broke most of the time). So that should tell you about how important I think this particular election is: I have no money, but I still choose to give some theoretical money away to an incumbent senator in another state.

Which Senator? Harry Reid.

The thing is, while Reid may be the Senator from Nevada, he’s also the Senate Majority Leader, which means in a weird way, he belongs to everyone. Even those of us not part of the Democratic party (no, I am a liberal, but I’m also an independent–mostly because I’m too consistently angry at the Democratic party to switch, even for the primaries).

It’s hard enough passing anything in the current senate. Loosing that 59 to 41 majority (and the majority leader into the bargain) isn’t going to ease that situation.

And then there’s is Sharron Angle, a terrifying individual so far to the right that even Bill Raggio can’t bring himself to support her. With this candidate, it’s almost impossible to cover the standard issues questions: her stances include abolishing the department of education and leaving the United Nations. This is someone who talks about the idea of privatizing veterans affairs and refers to autism using air quotes.

At the moment Angle is leading Reid 50 to 46 (or 42 to 40, depending on who you ask) in the polls, and while Bill Mann somewhat snidely remarks that “Harry Reid must have been saying a lot of prayers to get an opponent as weak as Sharron Angle. He will do extremely well.” not everyone is feeling quite so confident.

Including me. I mean, I honestly thought there was no possible way President Bush would be elected for a second term, and I couldn’t have been more wrong there. The 2004 election was the first in which I was old enough to vote, and it taught me one important lesson: you can’t be complaisant. If you think one situation is preferable to another, you have to get behind it. “Even voting for the right is doing nothing for it.” A vote is literally the very least we can do.

Giving a small sum of money might be the second-to-least I can do…but it’s a move in the right direction.

Hurray for California! Everyone else…sorry…

Well, the mid terms are over, and the world isn’t…yet.

In the Bay Area, everyone has been pretty much beside themselves since Sunday night. The Giants won the series, Jerry Brown is the governor, Gavin Newsom his trusty Lieutenant, Barbara Boxer has lived to wheel and deal another day, the 2006 Global Warming act will stand, and today, there is a parade.

Goodbye to Meg Whitman (for four years, at least). Goodbye too, to Carly Fiorina. Now if only we could say goodbye to Prop 8 and stabilize the budget as easily.

The rest of the map is predictably red. But it’s not as bad as you might think. Or at least, as I did think. Harry Reid hung in there, for which I am really and honestly grateful. I’d be even more grateful if he’d take this opportunity to stop throwing state money at his sons’ assorted nefarious businesses and focus–but we take what we can get. (An older man teared up on NPR this morning about how disappointed he was in Angle’s loss. Couldn’t believe it. She strikes me as the most insensitive and racist candidate in the whole country. Except maybe Jim Russell. But I guess it takes all kinds.)

In fact, no one too crazy won anything. No Sharron Angle, no Christine O’Donnell, no one wearing an SS uniform or a costume of any kind, no Carl Paladino, no John Raese. Even second tier crazy Joe Miller might not make it (M-u-r-k-o-w-s-k-i! What’s that spell?). Despite all the talk (change this, tea party that) and an admittedly significant shift in the balance of power, this election hasn’t been the insane alternate universe we all predicted, expected and in some cases, feared. It could still be okay.