It’s been a harrowing several months...well, OK, several years. But this election season has been run through with racial violence, mass uprisings, unprecedented climate-driven disasters, and a freaking pandemic. And that’s all on top of the Trump administration’s active measures to suppress the vote. Oh, yeah, there’s that steady march toward fascism too. Pretty heavy stuff.
At the same time, we are seeing unprecedented organing - the likes of which I have never seen in our lifetime. For every challenge it seems there has been a corresponding, progressive/left, grassroots movement to meet it. Think about it. From the day that Trump was inaugurated, there have been people in the streets, building power. In 2018, we had huge progressive/left electoral wins at the national level, most notably with AOC, Rashida Tlaib, and Ilhan Omar. Right here in PA, there were also huge victories by the left with the election of Summer Lee, Elizabeth Fiedler, and Sarah Innamorato. And, it looks like we could double...maybe even triple the numbers of progressives heading to Harrisburg after tomorrow’s elections. Beyond elections, we’ve seen organizations like DSA and the Sunrise Movement lead the way showing the world how movements can build power and change the horizon of our politics.
I wanted to change up our format a bit, today. I wanted to bring in a panel of great folks to give us their take on what we can expect when the polls close tomorrow. But, more importantly, I wanted to look ahead to the organizing that will need to happen as soon as those polls close. We will no doubt see people in the streets this week. On Out d’Coup, Sean and I have talked about preparations being made to defend democracy if Republicans try to steal this election. But we can look ahead to a longer horizon too. We will need strategies for a Trump win, for sure. But, perhaps even more so, we need strategies for a Biden administration.
So, today we’ll have a little pre-election roundtable to unpack some of this and to just have a sane conversation in the midst of all the chaos. To help me with this, I welcome:
- Sean Kitchen, Out d'Coup co-host. Sean is also doing awesome work with PA Spotlight and is a fantastic freelance photographer
- Shana Rose, creator and host of Sustaining with Shana podcast, sustainability professional, and a member of PASSHE's new Sustainability Development Task Force
- Leo Atkinson, Co-Chair of Lehigh Valley DSA, long-time Lehigh Valley resident, and former Fountain Hill council member. co-chair of Lehigh Valley DSA.
We'll give our final takes on Election Day and the kind of organizing that will be necessary as soon as the polls close.