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The Morning After: Unpacking the Midterm Elections
NPR is made possible by Microsoft who wants you to know that the newest member of the Microsoft surface family, the surface pro six has up to thirteen and a half hours of battery life, and in eighth gen Intel core processor, so you can work for as long as you want to wherever work takes you. This is one A. I'm Joshua Johnson. In Washington last night was a big night here in the US. The Democrats took the house the Republicans held the Senate, and nobody got everything they wanted today. President Trump declared the midterms and almost complete victory during a long raucous press conference. He told reporters to sit down repeatedly complained about reporters with accents and really got into it with C N N's, Jim Acosta and NBC's Peter Alexander, very rude person the way, you treat Sarah Huckabee is horrible and the way you treat. Other people are horrible, you shouldn't treat people that way. In in gyms defense. I've traveled with them and watch them. He's a diligent reporter who busts big fan of yours either. So I understand to be honest that was President Trump's sounding off on Jim Acosta and then Peter Alexander. So was this midterm election. A Blue Wave or a red wall or a bit of both the story is still developing. So you can get the latest update. Gates on our website, the one eight dot org and on your NPR member station. In the meantime, we'll unpack as much as we can after this. Support for this podcast and the following message. Come from jail, Marciel, lar-, whatever you call your home. Jomar knows you take great pride in keeping it clean. That's where seal are comes in. Cea lar- dissolves calcium lime and rust all around the house using natural ingredients, not harsh chemicals. Eight even carries the EPA's safer choice. Seal keep your little piece of the planet looking its best with SIA lar- making the world a little cleaner more than twenty years. That's how long Olympic gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar abused. The girls and women who came to see him for treatment believed a new podcast from Michigan radio and NPR digs into how he got away with it for so long. Joining us for the discussion from NPR headquarters in Washington is Alice Stewart, a Republican strategist and former communications director for Senator Ted Cruz who won his reelection fight Alice. Welcome to the program creativity with you on this day after mid term, you're surviving. We are more than surviving. We are thriving. And we're gonna have a great conversation with you. And also with Terry McAuliffe who's here in studio with us. He's the former governor of Virginia governor as a democrat and was chairman of Hillary Clinton's two thousand eight presidential campaign, governor McAuliffe. Welcome great to be with you think for having me. And also joining us from WD ET public radio in Detroit is a stead Herndon national politics reporter for the New York Times. Instead, welcome thanks for having me. Let me start with you. Instead Herndon who won yesterday which party came out as the big winner. If there was one. I think it's hard to kind of declare one singular winner. I mean, Democrats will take heart in the games that they made in the house. Some of those seats came from places where the president one, and there was a clear repudiation of this administration. But you also have to say that Republicans deepened of the red wall is if you would like to call it, especially in some of those state wide races big wins in places like Florida places like Texas that were thought were thought to be maybe signs of a changing electorate that maybe the Democrats and activate its new votes that will permanently alter the electoral map. We didn't quite see that happened last night. So I would say it's less of a sea change than we thought it would be but still meaningful governor McAuliffe Democrats were predicting hoping for praying for a Blue Wave this time, a solid loud statement to kind of repudiates Trumpism for lack of a better word how high was that Blue Wave. I've been saying for several months on TV. Radio that if the Democrats pick up the house of his significant number of governorships, it will have been a great night. We won the house who looks like twenty eight seats in the house. But what I'm most excited about is the governorships we netted seven new governors in the midwest, huge strength force women for you look at our four women candidate governor candidates one. So we won the governorships big states as you look at Maine and Michigan Illinois. Wisconsin was a big win for us, Nevada, New Mexico and Lord Kelly one in Kansas. I love the governors in the sense that they will be in the chairs and twenty twenty one when redistricting comes around. We got crushed as a party in twenty eleven redistricting in many of the seats to win the house this time, we're those gerrymandered seats. So we'll be able to stop that from the twenty one to thirty one and we picked up six Jaber so winning the house winning a bunch of significant governorships picking up a bunch of state houses, six state houses. Very good night's something I'm very happy with Alice Stewart, what about on the Republican? Inside Republicans lost control of the house, but fended off some tough challengers in a number of ways was it ineffective red wall that Republicans built for yesterday. I think so I think the fact we picked up some strong necessary seats in the Senate was was a good sign, and none of us here. Need to be reminded that history is generally not kind to the party in power. So it was antiquated that we would lose the house to to democrat control. But I think that's that's part of the process to have checks and balances in this current cycle. I think there was a few factors that went into the way the house played out is history as well. As the retirements, we have of many Republicans opened up some seats for for democrat pickups, and fundraising Democrats were were very strong on fundraising, which was been official to them. And and if I can follow up on what governor McAuliffe said that I do think these governor's races kind of get lost in the shuffle in the. Debate in Washington in they're so so critical and and in shaping of of how these states play out and just showing the strength of Republicans or Democrats in these states. And and I have always felt that redistricting is kind of like the the word you don't want to hear an elections. Just like when I was arguing supreme court throughout all the presidential campaigns. I've been at you don't realize how important it is. While the election is going on right right until you're slapped in the face with announced supreme court is big deal, and in twenty twenty redistricting will be a huge deal and having more Republicans or Democrats in those governor's races will be we'll be helpful. I should know by the way, we've had a lot of conversations on this program about gerrymandering and redistricting. You'll find those on our website, the one A dot org. We should also talk about the impact of President Trump. He was not on the ballot. But he very much played a role in the races. Some of the candidates said that this was a lot about sending a message to the president about his political. Terrific the president of actually embrace that. And said sure, let's make this about me. Presidential adviser Kellyanne Conway was on FOX and friends this morning. Here's what she said about the impact of President Trump. And there are a number of candidates who seemed allergic to the president on the Republican side. They didn't want him to campaign for them. They lost last night. He had people at Claire mccaskill pretending that she works with the president saying, I'm not, quote, one of those crazy Democrats. She also this morning is not even one of those elected Democrats. So without the president's engagement on the ground fifty three rally since he took office thirty just in the last two months since Labor Day. A intensive six day swing leading up to election day all the time being president at the same time with historic gains that last day alone. The three people who went and campaign for Mike dewine for governor of Ohio. Mike Bron Senator now from Indiana, Josh, Holly, Missouri, huge pickups, particularly in those two Senate seats, those flip from democrat to Republican on the strength. The president showing up to packed houses historic rallies and overflow crowds. Joey, there's just no there's just no substitute for his engagement Kellyanne Conway this morning on FOX and friends on the Fox News channel extent. Herndon how much was this midterm election of referendum on President Trump? It was significantly. And I think she has a point that they especially in those state wide races. When we talk about those Senate races, those governorships in places that the president one in twenty sixteen you did see a significant boost to his voter base that flow to those Republican candidates people like Ron to Santos who fashioned themselves as just basically mini Trump's up people who really hugged the president like in Missouri. And in Indiana, really really did see a boost. And I think the White House is is going to take credit for that. And they have the numbers to kind of prove that, but you also see places flipping on the other side in house districts that frankly, Democrats would have no business competing in you, you you saw a significant backlash to that. And places like Illinois, fourteen in Illinois suburbs and more rural areas, you had Lauren under would come and beat Randy Hoke grin and the in the district that back Trump significantly in two twenty sixteen. And so the the president's advice. Kellyanne Conway are saying that that's because those candidates did not have Trump there. But it really is. Because those districts those voters there have not warmed to the president's rhetoric and we've seen the the nativist immigration heavy rhetoric of the last couple of weeks, really soured him and some of those suburbs. Yeah. Unless that was one of the things that came up in the the the days before the election where you had house speaker Paul Ryan, saying talk more about the economy, give up immigration stopped talking about immigration, and yet you have a number of Republicans who hewed very close to the president's line or maybe came to support the president's more, including Marsha Blackburn in Tennessee who is now moving up from the house to the Senate. How do you read that in terms of the Republicans who did or did not embrace the president on their campaign trails? It's one less than one in this presidency is if you want to get the president to not talk about something tell them not to talk about it. And he ended up we'll talk about it. So I think the more people said stay away from immigration and the caravan the more. He wanted to talk about it because it resonated with his base it energize them. He knew that immigration and securing the border and keeping illegal immigrants out of their country and encouraging people to come into this country. Lawfully was something that resonated with his base. And he viewed that as a key factor in why he got elected, and in his mind that was a good way to keep his base energize and get them turn out in the polls. And that's why he focused on that at these rallies and keep in mind that that was one of the many issues he honed on at these rallies. He he did talk about that did seem to get picked up a little bit more in the national press. He also touted his his success on the economy, the unemployment rate historic lows the labor participation rate at a good good pace as well. As the the efforts that he has made with regard to the opioid crisis. So those are the factors discussed. And also reminding voters at his rallies that a vote for the democrat in these races is a vote for more of Pelosi and Schumer policies and that that is something while people on the sidelines. And even some of his advisors would have preferred him to discuss his economic success in his mind, he knew that immigration was a key motivator for his voters. The president mentioned Nancy Pelosi in the tweet this morning. He wrote quote in all fairness Nancy Pelosi deserves to be chosen speaker of the house by the Democrats, if they give her a hard time, perhaps we will add some Republican votes. She has earned this great honor. Glad to get to some of your comments as well. Curtis. Emailed a good day for the country as an independent, I find it crucial to have at least two parties in power. It'll be a good check on Trump and the Republicans will be a good check on the Democrats in the house governor McAuliffe before we move on and focus on Florida. I love to get your thoughts on this so-called Trump effect, particularly as it related to Democrats in. In more conservative states. There were a number of Democrats, particularly senators who had what looked like some tough battles ahead of them because they were in states that, sir. Horta Donald Trump. Yeah. Listen, I saw the Senate map was brutal. I think it was the hardest map for either political party ever. And we knew going in the Senate would be tough. And that's why for monks. I've been saying if we win the house we pick up a bunch of governorships at is a great night for the party. And as I say, you know, would now these new democrat governors, he seven governors we have forty million more over majority of Americans are now controlled by democratic governors. This is critical. I think as we got the election. I think he was a huge driver for our turn out. You know, he was going to get his base out. But I think he really helped turn out you look at women. You look at young voters record turn out this year. And I think a lot of that was because it President Trump. I think toward the end E double down on fear. Hate and division had a very hard time talking about the tax cut because it didn't go to help working families. Head a brutal time talking about healthcare. Even though they're all coming out saying we're for protecting pre existing conditions, and yet the Republicans voted seventy times to get rid of it. And literally ran ads saying we're going to protect it not the democrat. So I think healthcare was a huge problem for them. Couldn't talk about infrastructure because there is no infrastructure. So they doubled down on as I say, the fear hate and division. Talking about the caravan send in our troops down to the border, which you know, general Dempsey, Colin Powell, and others said, it was horrible idea. I have a son in the marines. I mean, no parent wants to see the military used for political purposes. So I think it was those issues that actually drove our turnout in as I say, we we won control of the house with twenty eight seats, we picked up seven governorships we picked up as I say, sixty eight chambers. I'm very proud of Virginia. My state we picked up three members of congress. Nobody in their wildest dreams thought that was possible. All three were women. Big winds. We beat Barbara Comstock, we beat David brat, basically. The whole Virginia house delegation from the DC suburbs is now all democratic. Yes. Absolutely. And now, we have a majority for a long time, a majority of the congressional delegation, and yet if you look at the votes, they always vote more democratic, but due to gerrymandering, you know, it was very hard to win. Now, we've one now with a democratic governor, and we're gonna have a democratic legislature. We're going to fix it. Brandy is in Texas. Brandy emailed. I was thrilled to take the house but devastated at Gillingham's loss. Meaning Andrew Gill who ran as a democrat for governor in Florida Abrahams lack of clear victory. Stephanie Stephanie Abrams who ran Abrahams who ran for governor in Georgia as a democrat and Duncan. Hunter's win. Duncan Hunter the Republican congressman in California brand-new goes on to write. It speaks to the incredible power of white fear and panic also eighteen percent of black women voted for Disentis. I'm not sure I buy that. Rhonda census, the Republican who won the governor's race in Florida race was a topic. That many of you brought up in your comments, including one of our listeners. Who tweeted how could America be this racist? How can an openly white supremacist like Steve king? Still win a seat in congress and Irwin tweeted the big elephant in the room race and immigration hate on the ascendant, a stead Hearn, and could you respond to that the impact of race in the rhetoric of the election? Yeah, we I've written several stories about this over the last couple of months. I mean, it is hard to deny just how central issues of race issues of white identity identity. Politics have been to this midterm elections. We all know the president and how much he loves to talk about immigration. How the caravan became so sensual last week in the half. But even before that you had the national Republican campaign committee doing several ads across the country about Colin Kaepernick and standing for the anthem people like Ted Cruz, Marsha Blackburn, Brian Kemp, all really leaned in to that that that those messages you. Also had folks like Antonio Gado up in New York nineteen face ads for quote, unquote, being a big city rapper and not right for that district up there and upstate New York. So it's hard to the night. Just how central of a role that played? But I think sometimes people forget that the reason these political attacks are being made on the on these lines is because they have a currency. They have a political potency that of that really does fuel some things. I mean, you mean, they do they use this kind of rhetoric because it works. Exactly. I mean, I'm talking to voters across aisles in the last six months who have who have told me that their number one fear was this changing country or the number one fear was maybe that there were too many immigrants in their culture was being shifted here, and those type of things we can't separate from the electoral decisions that happened last night. So I don't think it's fair to say that all of this. Everyone's. Vote was necessarily controlled by those ideas. But we would be foolish to say that it wasn't top of my many people Alice. Could you chime in on that just in the the nature of of the rhetoric and particularly the wave at race factored in sure, I think it's important distinction in that when President Trump and Republicans talk about the caravan or specifically securing the border or or immigration reform? They're talking about this from a national security standpoint and even an economic standpoint. So that is the message that this president campaigned on and one on and I worked for for Ted Cruz in the presidential election. And that is an issue that that he drove home as well. Well, but Ted Cruz and Donald Trump voiced it in different ways. I mean, Ted Cruz had one line of argument about this Donald Trump in his very first campaign event said they're sending crime drugs rake, rapists, and some I assume are good people. So the rhetoric is not the same. I agree. I, and I will be the first one that I've said countless times that the tone in rhetoric and the tactics that this president uses to make his point I would not use. And I disagree with a lot of it. But the policies I support I support the policies of securing our border. I support his policies of of of ending the democrat catch and release policies. I I support his view on ending chain migration and the visa lottery and making it more of a fair and legal system of entry into this country. The way he talks about it in the way, he chooses to get his message across is not how I would do it. But the policies are sound. And that is why a lot of Republicans voted for him. And we're seeing Republicans across the board continued to stand by him because they may not agree with the tone in the tactic. But the policies are sound. We mentioned one of the candidates who hewed very close to Donald Trump was Ron to Santa's who ran for governor in Florida as a Republican Santa's has won that race. And here to help us. Unpack that and a number of the other races in Florida is David smiley, a political reporter for the Miami Herald, David welcome to one A. Thanks for having me. Josh let's talk a little bit about that race. I let's hear part of what Mr. Santa's and Mr. Gillam said in their speeches last night other than serving our nation in uniform the opportunity to serve as the forty six governor of the great state of Florida. Is the greatest professional honor of my life. Thank you. The people Florida for your faith, your support and your trust. You have placed in me. I sincerely regret that. I couldn't bring it home for you. But I can guarantee you this. I'm not going anywhere. We're going to fight. We're going to keep fighting. We're going to keep working. We're gonna keep believing in all that. I believe that. Ultimately, we will be victorious that lasts voice was Andrew gillum for seeded by the governor elected Florida, Ron to Santa's David smiley. There was a lot baked into this race. This was one the whole country was watching very closely. How did Rhonda Santa's ultimately win this election? I think he owes a great deal of debt to Donald Trump. His campaign was floundering about a month into the general election and to Santa's brought on Susie wiles. A Trump aid to run his campaign. Trump came to Florida and very aggressively campaigned for dissent is whether it was the cavenaugh hearings or Trump's decision in the beginning of his campaign around the country to rally Republicans somewhere in that area is when you. I think we started to see that Republican voter enthusiasm was increasing. I if you look at the results the turn out was around sixty two percent in the state. So it's not that democratic voters didn't come out for for their candidates, which has been the problem for that party in the past. I think due in part to Trump Republican voters matched that enthusiasm. And in the end they were able to push to Santa's so across the finish line. We should also talk about the Senate race in Florida incumbent Democrat Bill Nelson ran against Republican Rick Scott who was the outgoing governor of Florida Scott has claimed victory Nelson's campus. Said, you know, as told some news organizations that they're gonna fight on that this is ripe for recount because the numbers are so close what do we make of that race? So far. Well, it does look like it's going to go to a recount, whether there will be enough votes to to push Bill Nelson past Scott, I think is Dowdell doubtable. But it does look like that's going to linger on pass the certification date. What was going on with that race? I mean Bill Nelson has been a Florida Senator for an extremely long time. He's one of these who's just kind of a reliable kind of moderate democrat. Rick Scott has kind of jumped to the governor's mansion he went from being a hospital executive Puerto bunch of his own money into a campaign became a two term. Governor was the nature of that race. Yeah. Bill Nelson was kind of like a generic democrat, which is crazy because he he was in the Senate for eighteen years. But he just you know, he never he didn't really have a message a lot of people were hoping that Andrew Gillingham would help drag him to victory into reelection. But I I think you know, with Rick Scott who is enormously. Wealthy with his ability, and what he did in pouring tens of millions of dollars into his own campaign, which also held other Republicans like the Santa's campaign and get money from donors who didn't have to get to the Senate to raise. He was just able to completely flood the TV markets with commercials for himself and against Bill Nelson. And Rick Scott has always been around that forty nine percent area. And he, you know, I think thanks largely to his own money was able to hit that number. There was a lot of branding of Democrats as socialists in Florida. I mean that was a national trend, but they really went hard at it, which Bill Nelson was pretty absurd. But I I think you know, Scott was capable and able to to brand Bill Nelson better than Nelson was able to define himself after nearly two decades and a Senate. We're speaking the David smiley political reporter for the Miami Herald, another thing I wanted to ask you about David were some of the. Amendments that passed in Florida several that were really very consequential including amendment four which had to do with felons being able to regain their voting rights amendment four past right? Yes it past. It does look like there's some issues in the courts. I was looking at Danny Rivero from wwl Rin who was mentioning that. There could be some legal issues, which might tamp down some of the consequences of amendment four. But there's going to be a lot of sort of Monday morning quarterbacking and analysis about wh-. How would the election have looked if the voters who appear to be eligible fairly soon to vote in the next elections would have been able to vote in this one that may be one of the things that Democrats might feel better about after losing yet another governor's race by one point or so David smiley, a political reporter for the Miami Herald, David we pre shaped your time. Sir. Thanks for talking to us. Thanks, glenn. Also to hear from some of you about the racist in Florida, including this voice that just landed our inbox Armando from Miami Beach, Florida. I am a democratic voter and voted downtick a democrat with the hopes of electing a democratic governor and democratic Senator I will it's really optimistic intil. I started to reach out to some of my friends and colleagues who are between the ages of eighteen and twenty five and unfortunately, just in my little small microcosm no-one planned on voting. I was able to convince people to vote, but I think in Florida, that's where we lost it. There wasn't an done to energize those eighteen to twenty five year old or Mondo. Thanks very much for sharing your thoughts with us governor McAuliffe. I'd love you to react to this, particularly because as a Floridian I've been hearing, what are Mondo sits at least the two thousand election. Young people people of color like. People in south Florida these diverse pockets along the I four corridor in central Florida that this has been the story in Florida for decades and Florida's Democrats for some reason like it's never enough to carry the candidates. They really want to get elected over the finish line. Yeah. But I think as we'll look at the exit data and the actual votes that you will see a huge influx of young voters. I think you saw it all over the country the amendment for that, you just mentioned I cannot tell you how important is that will enfranchise about one point five million new voters in Florida. This is something very personal knee. As you probably know, I did this in Virginia. I've restored more felon racing. Any governor in the history of the United States of America? I was sued by the Republicans take into our supreme court. I ultimately won. And this isn't about politics. This is about giving people a second chance, you know in forty states. Gosh, this it's automatic. But in the southern states, primarily going back to Jim crow laws. This was a way to disenfranchise voters. In fact. When I signed my order, I stood at our capitol where one thousand nine hundred to Senator glass said I'm putting this in to eliminate the Durkee from being a political factor in Virginia. It was clear said that absolutely Senate I read the quote into executive order. I brought these people in it. It's not a political issue. It's about treating people with dignity respect what happened yesterday in Florida at amendment four is gigantic, and it will be transformational for Florida vote going forward. But I think you saw that more young voters coming out is I say it was a very good night. We won the house. We won a bunch of governorships. Now, we gotta continue on next year Virginia Josh will win both chambers in Virginia last year, we picked up fifteen house a delegate seats the most since eighteen eighty Alicea. Do you want to start talking about Texas for a moment? I know we have to Paul shortly. But we mentioned the Ted Cruz beat Beto Aurora. We'll hear some from both candidates when we return, but it just wonder what you make of Ted Cruz victory having worked for him. And also just in terms of the strength of the campaign. The award campaign was tremendously strong, not just because they had great resources. He he was a good candidate. And he worked hard, and he was passionate on the issues. He connected with with the people, and he ran a positive campaign towards the end. You know, evidently, he was given some guidance to to take the gloves off. But he ran a good strong positive campaign promoting himself and not tearing tearing down his opponent to the the most he possibly could. And I think that's the way it should be in Ted did the same. I'm glad to see that Ted one. He has worked extremely hard for the people of Texas. And certainly since the recent hurricanes have hit, but he stuck strong on the issues that he cares about which is certainly Cavanaugh was very helpful to Ted and in reaffirming where his lot of his support comes life and second amendment rights as well as border security key issues that he has been consistent on in certainly resonated with tech. We'll talk more about Texas's. We continue with Alice Stewart instead Herndon and Terry McAuliffe. We'll also check in on California. And we'll see what all of this might mean for the future of governing the country. If we can do that, stay close. The following message comes from our sponsor capital. One. Would you know if someone applied for credit using your social security number if not listen to Joe witch arch head of the credit wise app? Talk about the new SSN tracker his team recently released while identity fraud is something everyone needs to be worried about we want to make it easy and seamless for them to become aware of anybody attempting to use their identity without their knowledge or permission, credit wise is free for everyone. Whether you're a Capital One customer or not you can find credit wise in your app or play store now. Sam Sanders here this week. I'm talking to Abby Jacobson, you know, her from her comedy central show brought city we're gonna talk about a solo cross country road trip Abby took recently, and why she wrote a book all about that is on the latest episode of it's been a minute from NPR. Let's hear a little bit more about the Texas Senate race where Ted Cruz kept his seat against democratic challenger Beto Aurore here is some of what Senator Cruz and mister O'Rourke said in their speeches last night beginning with the Senator. Tonight is a victory for all the men and women in this room, and all the men and women across this state. That poured your hearts, your passion. Your time your energy to rising to defend Texas. I want to thank this amazing campaign of people not a time from a single pack. All people all the time in every single part of Texas, all of you showing the country. How you do this? So proud of you guys. Clearly that was bento Arocca concession speech last night preceded by Senator Ted Cruz instead her and and what did we learn from the Texas Senate rate race? It was not a blowout for Ted Cruz. It was it was within a few points. No, Texas is still Texas. And so the result of a Republican Senator remaining or securing we elections we should not say as a surprise. But we should say that, you know, progressive's there that I have talked to while they were excited about the Beddoe campaign. We're still always fairly skeptical that this result could happen this year, what they were hoping for was an infrastructure to be built that communities would be reached in activated by state party. That has not been the best over the recent years, and that really groundwork will be laid for Texas to start mobilizing Latinos. African American voters in different parts of the state that may not have been reached previously and they're pretty excited with how this campaign. Out the margin. Looks good for them and more importantly, the infrastructure in the resources involved have created a pipeline for Texas Democrats in the future that all being said Ted Cruz is there in the me number one. And so the fact that he secured reelection. Well, you know, we'll have them be too giddy. But I think still if you listen to Texas Democrats, they think that there was a lot to like from last night in terms of that pipeline. Mario emailed. I hope that the record number of young people and people of color who came out to vote realize that it's not about Beto. It's about them. The only way the political discourse in this country is going to change is if young diverse people continue to come out and become an ever larger part of the electorate with those of you who voted in or watching the races. In Florida Travis tweeted, imagine how different results in Florida might be this morning if the over one million disenfranchised Florida's citizens could have cast ballots yesterday and berry wrote on our Facebook page. Why did Florida with its vulnerability to climate change elect Republicans who don't believe in climate science governor McAuliffe racist like Florida and like Texas half the be heartening in a way? And I do want to move on to talk about other racist. But. Just briefly it's got to be heartening in a way. And it's also got to be frustrating in a way like especially the Andrew gillum race that that morning after twenty twenty hindsight has got to just be making democratic strategists in Florida tear their hair out fields waking up today. But I agree that if you look at Florida you look at Georgia. I mean, you know, Stacey Abrams would have been the first African American woman in US history. Andrew Gilmore would've been the first half governor and for historic in beta even come in as close. So I agree. We'll take a lot of south side of it actually does that Stacey Abrams is at the time of this broadcast has not conceded that we're not yet. And you gotta get fifty percent or goes to a runoff on. We'll see what happens there, but you know, we have made inroads, and I agree with you earlier statement that you know, it's building for the future. And you know, it takes time to do it. You know, when I became when I ran in one five years ago today. Republicans controlled all the state lines. When I when we won all three statewide, all Democrats, we built a state party. And we have led a renaissance. We used to be a red state in Virginia when I will blue state primarily because we did things that people want us to put the politics aside for second. You know, I went in I inherited a gigantic deficit turned it into huge surplus record amount of jobs and economic development. But listen, I leaned in on the socially progressive issues. I kept a women's clinics open Republicans want to shut everyone them down. We had HP to anti-gay legislation. I stopped all that. You gotta make your state open and welcoming and a huge economic engine for the new gig disruptive economy. And that's what we did the process that we've gone through now in Florida in Texas and Georgia we're making great inroads, and it's going to take some time. But you know, we we had a very good night last night. And now as I say democratic governors will control a vast majority of the population of the United States. We want to talk about some of the racist further west, particularly in California. But first let me get to a few of your comments from Twitter. Roll tweeted, what scares me is the we one statements. We is not in reference to America. It's in reference to political party America is entering into a new era of segregation political. Segregation nNcholas tweeted, I find myself almost more excited about some of the ballot measures that passed reduced criminality of marijuana and multiple states, creating independent non-partisan commissions to create congressional district maps, both long overdue and hopefully starting a new trend that might be a good segue. Talking about independent congressional districts and laws on marijuana to talk about California because California had a big election last night, a reliably democratic state, but still worth taking a look at and to help us. Do that is Joe Gareth foliage senior political writer for the San Francisco Chronicle and the host of the podcast. It's all political show. Welcome to the program. Thanks for having me. So Gavin Newsom has basically been running for governor since he became the Lieutenant governor eight. Eight years ago. He won the race last night. How impactful will that be in terms of California's deep blue status, especially as an as an opponent to President Trump politically? Well, California will remain a deep blue state and Newsome will be sort of at the head of that. It's no secret to anybody at Josh. Well, you know from your time out here that he has a political aspirants beyond being governor of California as someone told me last night, that's not the last item on his political bucket list. So he has positioned himself as the leader of the resistance last night without mentioning Trump by name. He very pointedly spoke about him in his victory speech. He said, there's a reason why California's dream is America's leading brand because California's dream has always been and always will be too big to fail and too powerful to bully. He's been taking on President Trump both online on Twitter, and they've had some back and forth at their various rallies. Trump called him a clown and Newsom responded by comparing him to a character from Stephen King movie. So yeah, this is this is look for these two to go at it over the next two years that Blue Wave and the red wall that we talked about earlier in the program. What did that impact look like in California within the state who gained ground who lost ground? What the Democrats targeted seven congressional seats here in California that Hillary Clinton won two years ago, and the they're very close. Several of them are very close. In fact, the votes are still being counted. We may not know the results for days, but it looks like to incumbent Republicans are in some trouble. One of them would be Dana Rohrabacher who was congressman from southern California, Orange County and another one is Steve Knight. Who's a congressman from Los Angeles County and Trump today earlier said that people who followed him would be were the ones who won. And those who didn't were the ones who lost. That's not the case in these two Rohbock was on the shortlist, very briefly to be secretary of state. He's a nickname is that Putin's favorite congressman. There's no doubt about his Republican credentials. So it's a mixed bag. We're going to see some newcomers here in California on the democratic side. What about some of the issues that were directly impactful to Californians there were some ballot measures in propositions that had to deal with things like rent control and funding housing for the homeless like some some issues that Californians are very hot on. And I think a lot of other Americans are dealing with the impacts of as well where they are. How did those do? Well, there's some again a mixed bag on that there's a statewide proposition to expand rent control. Currently there's only fifteen cities in California, San Francisco, Oakland that have rent control. But the voters turn that down that was a bit of a confusing measure because people didn't know how would affect them. And there was also concerns that it would chill development, and what California needs more than anything is housing. There has been a dearth of housing, particularly affordable housing. Being built even Gavin Newsom who wants to build a ton. More housing was a was against this statewide ballot measure, and San Francisco we had propositions C which would have raised taxes just on businesses and just on very very big businesses, and that one past and it sparked this war within the the tech billionaire community, very elite group billion Evers billionaire billionaire versus billionaire violence and on the pro side was marked Benny off. Who is the CEO of Salesforce is San Francisco's largest employer. I believe at this point. And he said, hey, we we billionaires have to pay our fair share on the other side was Jack Dorsey, the CEO Twitter, and he's like, you know, what the city doesn't know what it's doing with this money at that. It's collects already the three hundred million. This would have doubled it to six hundred million and excuse me, he was against it. This may be depending on you know, the March. A victory. This may be tied up in the courts for a while. So the money will be collected. But not spent which will really tick everybody off Joe garafolo senior political writer at the San Francisco Chronicle and host of the podcast. It's all political. Joe thanks for talking to us. Thank you Alice. Can I get you to chime in on California Republicans have really struggled in California to build new inroads? There seemed to be some seats that looks like opportunities for pickups. Maybe they still could be Californians have many Californians. I should say not all have kind of doubled down on being the core of the resistance. You have congressman Adam Schiff who could become the new chair of the house intelligence committee and take that from Devin noon as who won his race. How do you view California going forward? Interesting. I'm speaking with some conservatives in Los Angeles this morning, and they're big takeaway, certainly was no surprise that Gavin Newsom winning governor race. And what this does is. Is this sets up the the war of? Words between Gavin Newsom and the president. And and I think that will be a big takeaway from what we're getting out in California. In addition to the the congressional seats that Democrats picked up because Gavin Newsom has has made it his mission to run an agenda repudiating this president. And he certainly has you just mentioned he has higher aspirations, and he will continue to push his agenda of environmental regulations immigration, universal healthcare single payer healthcare. And that I think will take a lot of oxygen out of the California room with regard to the national dialogue. Although we should be clear that it's not just his agenda, a lot of Californians are all foreign VAR or regulation and single payer healthcare. Exactly, exactly. And and he is simply leading the charge as well. As a lot of the members of congress as well. But that that was the takeaway in conversation with with Republicans out there in California this morning. It will be interesting to see how Schiff and others from California. How if they will start to try and play ball with with this president? Or if they will continue as they have been in not working cross, the I think, it's it's both the responsibility lies on both sides. But the president and Republicans as well as Democrats, but I'd like to think that this new balance of power here will help ease ease that that mission. I do wanna talk about that going forward as we're winding down our conversation. Let me get to a few more comments from those of you reacting to your states elections Kristen emailed as a democrat from zuri. I am just so confused by our state we voted for progressive ballot measures raising the minimum wage medical marijuana campaign. Finance reform yet they continue to vote for GOP candidates who do not support these policies. I just don't get it. Elaine emailed. How about some kudos for Michigan? We elected democratic women as governor attorney general and secretary of state to democratic women flip. Long held congressional seats in our suburbs. And we have the first Muslim American Representative Laura tweeded, can we be hopeful the Democrats will get to work instead of worrying about dividing the country even more now is the time for Nancy Pelosi to be a leader. And be the voice of reason, not the voice of revenge. A herndon. I love your outlook on where we go from here, particularly because we're hearing from some listeners about the lingering political tensions in our country and in their families. Here's what one listener dropped in our inbox. There's this is telling you Lewis and dumbing Hanau Danna. It's Dan I left morning, and every single thing that I voted voted again. Have I got my hopes up with Alabama. She's in Doug Jones. And I said, that's my fault. I should have known better that. It's been very devastating. And I am the only you're not crat in my family. My entire family is Republican and I'm for lack of a better term closeted. So this is just making it all the harder to try to let them know. What I am. You know, Tanya, thanks very much for sharing your story with us from that closet from the closet democrat, by the way. Of course, Doug Jones with the democratic Senator who beat ROY Moore for the seat that had been Jeff Sessions to see a steady Herndon. I know we're low on time. But where do we see this going? Do we see signs of bipartisanship? Does the divide deepen? What's it looks like right now? Yeah, I'm probably the bear bad news here. I don't see that divide going anywhere. I think if there's any lesson from last night, it's that parts of the country are explicitly rejecting this kind of Trumpian message and parts of it are clinging to more deeply, I think we see even from the president's tweets this morning. That we have a long road ahead of us in terms of getting what will be a democratic house and a Republican president who has not shown the willingness to really been there on the same page, and I think actually more important than the politician divide is the voter divide and the actual people. And I think that's something. We actually kind of under talk about is. It's not just that these politicians are, you know, more polarized because of their own kind of ambitions. And opinions it's because the basis of those two it of those two parties are splintering more further apart. So I don't really see it going anywhere. Instead Herndon national political reporter for the New York Times stead, thanks for talking to us. Thank you. Former Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe and former chair if Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign governor, thanks very much. Great to be with you and Alice Stewart, Republican strategist and former communications director for Senator Ted Cruz. Thanks alice. Enjoyed Josh thanks or election team was led by Stephanie collect and James Morrison to learn more about our staff. Visit the one eight dot org slash staff. This program comes to you from W AMU part of American University. In Washington distributed by NPR until we meet again, I'm Joshua Johnson. Thanks for listening and thanks for voting. This is one A. Support for this podcast and the following message. Come from internet essentials from Comcast. Connecting more than six million low income people to low cost high speed internet at home. So students are ready for homework class graduation and more. Now, they're ready for anything.