Big midterm victories that give me hope for the future

While it’s still too soon to know the full results of the midterms, there were some major victories on Tuesday night that spanned the entire country.

Numerous election denying candidates in key battleground states lost their races for both secretary of state and governor.

Abortion rights were protected in five states, minimum wage increases were approved by voters in Nebraska and Washington, DC, collective bargaining rights were enshrined in the Illinois constitution, and Medicaid coverage was expanded to more than 40,000 people in South Dakota.

Control of state legislatures flipped to Democrats for the first time in years in Michigan and Minnesota—as well as in the Pennsylvania House. Maryland elected its first Black governor—only the third Black governor elected in U.S. history. The first openly lesbian U.S. governor was elected in Massachusettes. New Hampshire elected the first trans man to a state legislature in U.S. history.

John Fetterman ran as a voice of the working class and flipped a U.S. Senate seat in Pennsylvania. Meanwhile, dozens of other progressive candidates defeated big monied interests to win elections to the U.S. House, including Maxwell Frost, the first Gen Z member of Congress.

Friends, regardless of the overall outcome of the midterms, have no doubt: progressives are the future.

Why else would election deniers, monied interests, and bigots be fighting so hard to defeat us?

For one simple reason: They’re terrified of our power.

America still has a long way to go. But it is far better and stronger now—more inclusive, more diverse, more dynamic—than it has ever been.

Remember this as we continue our work. The fight isn’t over—and it won’t get easier. But WE can win. Tuesday was proof.

This post originally appeared at RobertReich.org.

Robert B. Reich is the chancellor’s professor of public policy at the University of California, Berkeley and former secretary of labor under the Clinton administration. Time Magazine named him one of the 10 most effective Cabinet secretaries of the 20th century. He is also a founding editor of The American Prospect magazine and chairman of Common Cause. His film, Inequality for All, was released in 2013. Follow him on Twitter: @RBReich.

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