And it is that voter participation that makes the difference between a 2006 or 2012, and a 2010. If we vote, we win. If we don't, they win. It's pretty much that simple.
Which is why local elections in the Raleigh area are so encouraging. Sure, we can be happy that Democrats retook the school board and swept city council races and the mayor's race. Go team! But that's not the best news from these results. It's this:
In the school board races overall, turnout was about 21 percent of registered voters, which doesn't sound like a lot but is twice the turnout of the 2009 elections, in which the Republicans seized their 5-4 board majority.Our people turned out, and we won. They didn't turn out in 2009, and we lost. And lost big in 2010. So is this increased Democratic performance a harbinger for 2014? It's hard to say with a historical sample size of one. But it's certainly a good sign. Our people are fired up against GOP extremism. The country is sick of that GOP extremism.
As long as Democrats don't capitulate to those extremists, our 2014 chances look better every day.