Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Ignore The Hot Takes: Georgia And North Carolina Are Both Purple States

Guest Blogging: Drayton Aldridge

Election 2020 is drawing to a close, and the same pundits who predicted a Biden landslide are churning out their pieces on the momentous Democratic victory in Georgia, as well as the red wave that swept through states like North Carolina. There’s no doubt that Georgia showed up this year, and Democrats across the country owe tremendous gratitude to the efforts of organizers and volunteers throughout the state. 

Carolyn Bordeaux
As of this writing Joe Biden appears poised to win Georgia’s 16 electoral votes and turn the state blue for the first time since 1992. Democrats also flipped a suburban Atlanta congressional seat in one of their few pickups of the night (Carolyn Bordeaux in the 7th CD). Georgia may even rescue Democratic hopes of a Senate majority in the January runoff elections. 

Meanwhile North Carolina Democrats once again lost to Donald Trump, blew an eminently winnable Senate race, lost every competitive congressional election, lost crucial judicial races, and came up short in their efforts to flip the state legislature before next year’s redistricting. Particularly due to the ramifications of that last point, Democrats in North Carolina are feeling deeply dispirited as they begin to assess their daunting path forward.

While the wins and losses in both states are very real, the narratives forming around them are mostly hogwash. When all the votes are counted, Georgia will very narrowly go for Biden and North Carolina will very narrowly go for Trump. Results from other statewide races reinforce the fact that both states remain closely divided.

Looking ahead to the future, both states will be central to Democrats’ path to the presidency in the next election, taking the place of traditional swing states like Ohio and Florida that are clearly trending red. North Carolina’s Senate election will be one of the marquee races of the 2022 midterms, as will Georgia’s senate race and gubernatorial election. Both states are highly competitive and changing quickly, yet continue to be dominated by ultra-regressive Republicans who lie, cheat, gerrymander, and vote-suppress their way into power. So far this has worked swimmingly for Republicans and it will continue to work for them until it doesn’t. Take a look at Virginia if you want to know how this story eventually ends.

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