Turns out the resistance is not futile.
When it became evident that Democrat Doug Jones would narrowly defeat Republican challenger Roy Moore in the special election last night to fill the United States Senate seat in Alabama left vacant by embattled Attorney General Jeff Sessions, something electric began to pass through the television waves and on social media and at local viewing parties.
Doug Jones accomplished something no one thought was possible. He is now the junior senator from Alabama, and he is a Democrat.
Consider the magnitude of this feat: Alabama, one of the poorest states in the nation, inextricably linked to its country conservatism and firmly squared within the bible belt. Alabama, which has not elected a Democrat to the United States Senate since 1992*. In a seat that should have firmly gone GOP and has for decades. In a seat that was left vacant by Jeff. Fucking. Sessions. In a state that elected Donald Trump by THIRTY (30%) POINTS over Hillary Clinton in 2016.
Indeed Alabama voters said no to sexual predators, to racism, to bigotry, to white nationalists, to sexism, to misogyny, to homophobia, to anti-semitism, to child molesters, to Roy Moore, to Donald Trump, and to the Republican party.
And no means no!
What this tells us is that the massive wins in Virginia and New Jersey last month were no fluke. The resistance is not futile. The calls. The postcards. The social media advocacy. The commentary. The meetings with Members of Congress. It is real. And it is happening. And it is moving full force toward 2018. If a Democrat can win in Alabama, Democrats can win ANYWHERE. Someone should get a memo to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. You’re on notice, Mitch.
But Doug Jones was hardly the star of the evening. The stars of the evening were unexpected, but only because the American news media has done such a poor job of representing their voices. In the aftermath of the 2016 presidential election, Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and many Democrats began to frenetically wonder why Democrats had failed the white working class.
“Protect white people” is hardly the messaging the Democratic Party needed, and nevertheless, despite the fact that Hillary Clinton had the unwavering support of the
Mothers of the Movement, and overwhelmingly dominated amongst African American women both in the general election and in the Democratic primary, the voices of these voters were given a back seat in the post-mortem of the election to the overwhelming chorus that this was about WHITE PEOPLE.
Nay, the heroes of the resistance, the silent trailblazers of this movement were, and proved last night that they are, women. of. color. (We have been on that train for a long time, y’all, thanks for watching!)
Above all, the electricity Tuesday night came from the realization that together, we had made the impossible possible.
Congratulations and welcome to the United State Senate, Doug Jones!