EDITORIAL: Thank the workers and common-sense voters

When working people sit down to Thanksgiving dinner this year they will be savoring more than turkey, stuffing and cranberry sauce.

They will be giving thanks that a clear majority in the Nov. 7 midterm elections displayed so much common sense, voting to end one-party, dictatorial rule in Washington. On the Iraq war, their votes said loud and clear that when we are headed off a high cliff, it is not wise to “stay the course.” They voted their hopes and not their fears.

Consider how smart the voters of South Dakota were in rejecting a ballot measure that would essentially repeal the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade abortion rights ruling. The voters saw through this anti-woman measure.

We are thankful that so many victories came in so-called “red states” long considered “Bush country.” In Kansas, two rabidly right-wing Republican House, members were defeated and the moderate Democratic Kansas governor was re-elected. In Arizona, Republican J.D. Hayworth, a fanatic anti-immigrant lawmaker in the House, went down to defeat. In Sugarland, Texas, Nick Lampson, the labor-backed Democrat is taking Tom DeLay’s seat. How sweet it is!

We give thanks that Florida voters dumped Katherine Harris, who helped Bush steal the 2000 elections. And thank you, voters of Virginia, for sending racist Sen. George Allen packing with a football under one arm and his hangman’s noose dangling from the other.

Republican Bob Corker won a Senate seat in Tennessee by resorting to a racist television ad against Democrat Harold Ford. But we give thanks that the Tennessee labor movement and African American voters mounted a statewide drive that almost elected Ford the first Black senator from the South since Reconstruction. That is a harbinger of victories to come throughout the South.

We give thanks that the forces of democracy ran a “50 state campaign” challenging the Republican right everywhere!

It will take a struggle to make the new Democratic majority deliver on their promises. But in the meantime, we have much to be thankful for.