On Wednesday morning, liberal America woke up paralyzed. In spite of the many polls, media pundits, and Facebook news feeds that had all but guaranteed a Clinton victory, Donald J. Trump bulldozed through the “blue wall” of the industrial midwest and straight into the White House. Riding his coattails were conservative senators Rob Portman (OH), Ron Johnson(WI), Pat Toomey (PA), Roy Blunt(MO), and Richard Burr(NC), who all handily won senate races that were once predicted to be mere coin flips.
The Paris Climate Agreement, the Affordable Care Act, and funding for Planned Parenthood are all up in the air and now it’s practically open season for Republicans and Donald Trump. Behind 48 seats to 52, Senate Democrats will need to seek out the few remaining moderate Republicans—at least three of them, if they want any hope of overriding bills put forward by the even more lopsided House of Representatives.
That is if Foster Campbell, a cattle rancher in Louisiana, can’t beat his Republican challenger.
Because of its wacky primary system, Louisiana holds the final Senate and House elections on December 10th. If Campbell can pull an upset, it will have huge implications for the Democrats’ ability to check Donald Trump.
How Foster Campbell could win.
For any other Democrat, winning Louisiana seems unfeasible. After all, the state went 60–40 for Trump. However, Foster Campbell is not any other Democrat.
Foster will fare much better than Hillary because he knows the electorate. Through four decades of listening to those around him, he built up a huge network of support in a deeply Red State. He’s stood up to big Tobacco companies, fought to fund schools, and led a campaign to lower the high cost of telephone calls from Louisiana jails and prisons. In 2008 he was elected to the Louisiana Public Service Commission with more than 78 percent of the vote.
One reason to be hopeful is that turnout for Louisiana’s December 10th election historically has been pitifully low. The race will largely be a game of who can get more people to turn out and vote. Furthermore, Foster’s platform can resonate with both supporters of Trump and Clinton, who all feel abandoned by Washington and corporate interests.
If you want to help get money out of politics, or are worried about the implications of a Donald Trump presidency, doing everything you can to get Foster Campbell in the Senate is the last action you can take that will have immediate results in Washington. The difference between a 52–48 senate and a 51–49 senate is huge.
What you can do right now
1. Go to www.fostercampbell2016.com. Read up on Foster Campbell, understand his message. He is not an establishment Democrat. His core pillars are raising the minimum wage, funding schools, ensuring equal pay for women, and getting corporate money out of Washington. Consider donating $5 to $50 dollars to his campaign.
2. If you agree with him, there isn’t much time to get him elected. Spread word of this fight to every liberal you know. Especially people with connections to Louisiana.
Sign up here bit.ly/FCampbell. Join a phone bank. Make calls.
3. Win or lose, even the act of getting organized—holding onto this energy, will lay the foundations for 2018 and 2020. My advice to all the progressives out there reeling from Tuesday: stop moping and do something.