“I would tell them it’s Judgement Day,” Rep. Adriano Espaillat (D-N.Y.) told those who have yet to cast a vote in today’s midterm elections. Polls are open until 9p.m. EST in the Congressman’s district.
Today, says Espaillat, is not merely another election, but in fact a “referendum on Trump.”
Predicting that greater voter turnout than in years past would favor Democrats and, despite a rainy day, voters in New York would “break records in voting,” Espaillat is confident that a “blue wave” nationwide is coming today.
“No question about it, I think that [Democrats] will take the House, and I would not give up on the Senate yet,” Espaillat said in a phone interview today with Bold. “I think the Senate may still be in play.”
If that happens, it would be the first time in nearly a decade that the Democratic Party controlled both houses of Congress. But what is it about this election cycle that is motivating Democratic voters and spurring confidence in Espaillat?
Espaillat asks that among many Democratic voters, for them 2018 is a question about, is “our nation going to be a heavy handed nation, that beats up on people and that dehumanizes people and is racist, or are we going to be a nation of aspirations, of hopes, opportunities like the tradition has been for many, many years? I think that most folks will choose for the latter.”
If voters see Trump and the Republican base as the former it seems like a sure win for Democratic candidates across the nation, and some polls seem to suggest just that. However many polls are within the margin of error in many districts, and as was learned in the 2016 presidential election, polls are sometimes misleading, if not outright wrong at times.
Espaillat is not concerned, and in fact, he said that “any glitch in the polling will favor Democrats in this election cycle,” counting on the assumption many first-time voters, including many young people, are not represented properly in polling.
If that’s the case, and “America cleans up its act,” as Espaillat put it, the Democratic surge in congressional control would certainly impact future policy, likely with greater deadlock.
Nonetheless, whether tonight is “a referendum on Trump” or a reaffirmation, the result of tonight’s voting will have significant impact on the second half of the Trump presidency and indeed the 2020 presidential election cycle (which many have already claimed has started).
That, as Espaillat put it, “will send volumes.”
Carrie Sheffield is the founder of Bold. She is passionate about storytelling to empower and connect others. A founding POLITICO reporter, Carrie contributed on political economy at Forbes and wrote editorials for The Washington Times. After earning a master’s in public policy from Harvard University, she managed credit risk at Goldman Sachs and researched for American Enterprise Institute scholar Edward Conard. She earned a B.A. in communications at Brigham Young University and completed a Fulbright fellowship in Berlin.
Anthony DiMauro is an undergraduate at New York University and a newsroom intern with Bold TV.