Post-Election Day Forum

Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. Lounsbury says:

    Having avoided American media this past week, happy this is past.

    Was pleased to see the headlines Democrats overperforming expectations, Trump candidates weakly performing. This is good. I do greatly prefer that the Democrats perform well, and one never sees Trump in power again.

    but for God’s sake they need to learn to bloody sell their product to new (or rather former) customers better. (and exploit the living fuck out the expectations movement now, Journos love selling such stories, it’s a sales point)

    Still, God willing, the Trumpist faction will have a black eye at end of this week on what appears to be a clear underperformance against history and against expectations. That is delightful.

  2. JohnSF says:

    John SF opens US news with trepidation.
    …. ooh!
    Fetterman wins!
    Lake trailing; Walker trailing, Boebert trailing.
    Moore takes Maryland gov. Healey wins Mass.
    Whitmer holds Michigan.
    Dems currently only 2 down in the House.

    Not fabulous, but could be a lot worse.
    Certainly not a Republican landslide.

    (OTOH: Senator Vance? Dear me. And Matt Gaetz still wins: yuk. Likewise MTG)

  3. OzarkHillbilly says:

    From US states vote to protect reproductive rights in rebuke to anti-abortion push there is this:

    These wins deliver more blows for Republicans who are increasingly finding that, when put to a vote, Americans frequently do not agree with a sweeping agenda to dismantle abortion rights.

    So far, the anti-abortion movement has relied on judges, state houses and Republican lawmakers to curtail reproductive rights.

    But since the supreme court dismantled the constitutional right to abortion on 24 June, pro-choice advocates are increasingly looking to ballot initiatives as a way of shoring up rights.

    The same can be said of a whole lot of issues. Anyway, more of this.

  4. DK says:

    Biggest loser: the pundit class. Look at all those intellectually lazy refried Fox News talking point takes that aged like three-day-old catfish in Georgia sun.

    — Catherine Rampell, promising a Red Wave shellacking via WaPo: Democrats are drowning in denial
    In fact, Rampell and her media colleagues remain in denial about how they keep being played by right wing propaganda, this time in the form of low quality, unreliable, last minute Republican polls, released to depress Democratic enthusiasm and feed a fake narrative of conservative momentum.

    — Alice Stewart, for CNN: Democrats are out of touch with American voters
    *I’ll concede the point: I’m unapologetically elitist politically and thus out of touch with my countrymen who’ll elect election deniers, Putin-puppets, antivaxxers, climate change deniers, fascists, pedos, and white supremacists because of global inflation and corporate price gouging. Hence why I’ve visited Europe 5x since Aug 2021, scouting out a better tribe for me to immigrate into. But the ‘liberal’ media and the GQP — a party so extreme, dangerous, and toxic it couldn’t generate a midterm wave in the worst Democratic political environment in a generation — are even more out of touch, apparently. So.

    — Bill Maher: predicted that Republicans will win big in the upcoming midterm elections in part because of “woke culture” and Democrats submitting to it.”
    *Looks like Bill Maher should stick to intentional comedy, though this is hilarious in hindsight. I guess mindlessly repeating “woke” a thousand times isn’t one of those vaunted kitchen table issues.

    — Brendan O’Neil, Chief Political Writer for Spiked: The Midterms have exposed just how out of touch the Dems now are.
    *Actually, the midterms exposed how clueless media bros somehow keep failing up into “chief political” press positions.

    — Stephen Collinson, for CNN: Democrats confront their nightmare scenario on election eve as economic concerns overshadow abortion and democracy worries
    *Reality check: various exit polls showed abortion running just barely behind economic concerns, as the #1 concern for more than half of young women, and as the top concern in Pennsylvania and other jurisdictions. Oops.

    USA Today: Why Biden’s closing argument worries some Democrats and could miss the mark with midterm voters
    CNN: Biden’s plea for democracy is a strong election-closing argument for a different election
    ABC: Biden’s ‘defining moment’ messaging has already shown limits
    *Wrong. Biden sharpened focus on the serious threat Trumpist extremism and political violence poses to our democratic republic, scaring up Democratic turnout and keeping suburban voters in the fold. This was stragetically sound. More important: it was his moral, ethical, and patriotic duty as POTUS. And ours as citizens.

    Nate Cohn and Nate Silver need to seriously reconsider which polls they use for their models. No one should ever hire ‘Democratic strategist’ Hilary Rosen again. Carville, thanks but hang it up sir. And anybody still inclined to cite Trafalgar Group or Real Clear Politics as a source is a hopeless case.

  5. Scott says:

    Went to bed early. Woke up early (now 0430). Haven’t read the news. Always have a sort of dread after election day. But there was a glimmer of hope in the comments above. We’ll see what mess we still have in Texas.

  6. Scott says:

    @Scott: Well, that went as expected. No change in anything in Texas. What pisses me off the most is the continued reelection of the indicted felon, adulterous, under continuous investigation Attorney General, a snake of no morals or principles, who is repeatedly propped up by the far right “Christians”.

  7. Scott says:

    Headlines from Politico:

    McCarthy’s victory party turns into a dud

    The red wave that wasn’t

    Trump’s biggest midterm bets don’t pay out

    I guess beating expectations is close to winning. Though actual winning is better.

  8. OzarkHillbilly says:

    The close races for Trump-endorsed candidates appeared to confound the former president, whose only formal remarks came early in the evening, when he delivered a clipped speech standing in front of a row of American flags at the head of the ornate white-and-gold ballroom.

    Trump had entered to rapturous applause after top aides from his political team and political action committees – some of whom had been ordered to spend the evening at Mar-a-Lago – and donors had filled the room in anticipation of what the crowd regarded as the main draw of the event.
    But as a storm descended on to West Palm Beach, lashing rain against Mar-a-Lago from all sides, and the results became clear, the ballroom emptied within an hour of Trump’s speech while advisers retreated upstairs to Trump’s office or simply left the property.

    The former president finally rose from his table shortly after midnight – but only after reporters had been strategically ushered out.

    It would appear that the shine is rubbing off the turd.

  9. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Scott: I have no idea of what to say about his re-election other than that today’s Texas GOP is little more than an ongoing criminal enterprise.

    I would like to say that not even the Missouri GOP could stand for an outright criminal in the governors mansion. I suspect tho that Greitens real sin was that he thought he was the boss of all and pissed on everyone “below” him and the state GOP had to put him in his place.

  10. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Another provisional interpretation is that Joe Biden has defied the odds again. Just some years ago he was written off as a 2020 presidential candidate after a poor showing in Iowa and New Hampshire only to rally and win the party nomination.

    Now the president looks set to best his Democratic predecessors Bill Clinton, who lost 54 House seats in his first term in 1994, and Barack Obama, who lost 63 seats in his first term in 2010. With the congresswomen Abigail Spanberger and Jennifer Wexton having survived in Virginia, it seems there will be no “shellacking” this time.

    For another former president, however, there is little cause for joy. Trump was already the first president since Herbert Hoover in 1932 to lose re-election, the House and the Senate. Now his curse has condemned Republicans to another below par showing when history and economic dissatisfaction were on their side.

    Trump used to love saying: “We’re going to win so much, you’re going to be so sick and tired of winning.” Republicans, surely, are now sick and tired of losing. But maybe not sick and tired enough to deny Trump one last chance in 2024.


  11. OzarkHillbilly says:

    I have read that early voting was dominated by DEMs. If true, the GOP might be in for some real disappointment.

  12. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Elon Musk sells Tesla shares worth $4bn

    “Didn’t see that coming.” says absolutely nobody anywhere.

    “In the (hopefully unlikely) event that Twitter forces this deal to close *and* some equity partners don’t come through, it is important to avoid an emergency sale of Tesla stock,” he tweeted.


    The sale came just weeks after Tesla reported $3.3bn in profit and $21.45bn in revenue for the third quarter – falling short of Wall Street expectations – which caused a 4% drop on the day. Tesla’s value has dropped about 46% this year, but Musk’s net-worth remains just under $200bn.

    Another turd losing it’s shine.

    In other tech genius overlord news:

    Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg confirmed to executives that the company will begin laying off employees on Wednesday morning, the Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday.

    Zuckerberg addressed hundreds of executives at the company on Tuesday morning, foreshadowing large cuts. He mentioned recruiting and business teams as groups that would see layoffs, according to the WSJ, adding an internal announcement of the company’s layoff plans is expected around 6am eastern time on Wednesday.

    Zuckerberg said he was accountable for the company’s downturn, people familiar with the meeting told the newspaper, with overoptimism about growth leading to overstaffing.

    At least metaburg takes responsibility, something the muskrat is incapable of.

  13. SC_Birdflyte says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: That’s the good news. The bad news is that the results may give DeSantis enough of a boost to make him challenge TFG in 2024.

  14. grumpy realist says:

    @SC_Birdflyte: If–as is quite possible–it ends up with a Trump vs. deSantis match in the primaries, I expect the GOP to have a civil war.

  15. Mu Yixiao says:


    Last week (?) there were several articles about a new poll that shows only 8% of Americans want a total ban on abortions–down from 13% in 2017. Even Republicans don’t want it banned.

  16. Mu Yixiao says:

    As of 06:00, Wisconsin has retained its Democratic governor, the Democratic challenger ousted the Republican Attorney General, and our Senate seat is too close to call.

    Haven’t heard anything about the State Assembly (but I’m not very hopeful).

  17. Mu Yixiao says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    EDIT (the edit gods are not smiling on me today): Attorney General seat was retained by the incumbent Dem (I wasn’t all that awake when reading the headlines).

  18. JohnSF says:

    @grumpy realist:
    Which would be a shame.
    After all the effort they’ve put in to planning an inclusive one where the whole country gets invited. /sarc

  19. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Well, Missouri is anything but unpredictable, dear readers: The goblin — cough — person with an “R” next to their name has won the U.S. Senate race. Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt has apparently beaten Trudy Busch Valentine, with the AP calling the race around 9:12 p.m. after very preliminary results showed Schmitt up 62 to 35 percent.

    But despite the vomit-inducing reactions you may be feeling right now, you might want to stop and consider one important question: What will our local school districts do with the money they no longer have to spend on lawyers?

    Schmitt, in all of his lacking wisdom, sued multiple public school districts when elementary school-aged children were welcomed back to the classroom mid-pandemic with just one caveat: wearing a mask. Our attorney general simply could not let this stand, because there is nothing worse than preventing a deadly virus from spreading (that was sarcasm).
    So now, fellow Missourians, we offer you a look on the bright side: School districts can turn their focus back to what has mattered all along — the kids. Maybe they can spend their money replacing banned books or buying new textbooks on Critical Race Theory (just kidding, literally no one teaches this shit, Schmitt made it up).

    They’ll actually just spend what little money they get from the state on pencils for your kids.

    Imagine that, spending money on their students. Who’da thunk it?

  20. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @SC_Birdflyte: That’s the good news. The bad news is that the results may give DeSantis enough of a boost to make him challenge TFG in 2024.

    Gonna have to disagree on that 2nd point. That’s the even better news. Of course, there is always a chance trump is spending so much time in a court room he has no time for anything else.

  21. Kathy says:


    OMFG!! We need an emergency tax cut!

    Hell, the government should buy Tesla shares and give them to St. Elon, along with a $55 billion anti-capital gains tax!

    Will no one think of the poor, needy, massively insecure billionaires?

  22. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Mu Yixiao: Yep. I commented a couple days ago that Dobbs might even get a fair number of GOP women to flip. It would be interesting to see if I was in any way right by someone teasing that out of the voting data.

  23. JohnSF says:

    In Ukraine, unpleasant karma catches the car man:
    Collaborationist “deputy governor of Kherson” Kirill Stremousov killed in “car accident.
    Previously seen in a video, urging civilians to “evacuate” the city, but also that “at the moment everything is fully under control”.

    So why does he appear to be in his car with all his belongings in the back?

    I wonder if it was his “friends” or his enemies who said farewell?

  24. Mu Yixiao says:


    Five states had abortion-related measures on their 2022 midterm ballots, and voters in all of these states seem to have sided with reproductive freedom.

  25. Mu Yixiao says:

    Hah! There’s some context:

    Chuck Grassley, 89, who was born before the invention of the chocolate chip cookie, will serve another six (6) years in the Senate.

    [emphasis added]

  26. Joe says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: It was also my impression that early voting – in person and mail-in was dominated by Dems – but the little coverage I saw on TV last night and heard on the radio this morning was both ambiguous about who was voting early and the order in which such votes were counted in relation to in-person voting. I would think later-counted votes would skew blue, but I’ll just have to wait and see. (It would sure be nice to see Warnock avoid the run-off.)

  27. Skookum says:

    Yesterday @Manala posted about difficulty signing up for Mastodon. I didn’t have any trouble using my desktop browser. For those who are curious about Mastodon, here is their help link.

    @Manala, make sure you are using the correct format for you username. It’s keep to sign in with the server that you joined. My username is @Sk*****@ma*.to, where is where I signed up. Sorry to hear that you had a hassle. It will take time for people to learn and figure out their place in the “Fediverse.”

  28. Jim Brown 32 says:

    I am not a Poll denier but the last few weeks felt like a influence campaign. I was right.

    I believe those Republican polls were amplified to appear as a Red Wave to drive Democrat turnout against their normal trend of midterm laziness. It actually worked.

    Sophisticated consumers of news have to be aware that any information, including polls, can be dual use to drive behavior.

    If you bang on one side of the aquarium the fish dart to the other side….

  29. Monala says:

    I shared this on the open forum late yesterday, and wonder if anyone can advise me:

    I’m already frustrated with Mastodon. I downloaded the app and signed up, but it won’t let me log into the app. It tells me my username and password are incorrect. However, if I sign in with the link they gave me when they asked me to verify my email address, the same username and password work. But I can’t do anything or visit anywhere on Mastodon other than my profile from that link. So I have no idea what I’m supposed to do.

  30. Monala says:


    Reality check: various exit polls showed abortion running just barely behind economic concerns, as the #1 concern for more than half of young women, and as the top concern in Pennsylvania and other jurisdictions. Oops.

    I wonder why pundits don’t realize that abortion is an economic concern. The number one reason cited for seeking an abortion is because you can’t afford a(nother) child. Even when a child is wanted, women know that pregnancy and childbirth/child rearing will hugely affect their economic future.

  31. CSK says:


    @Skookum: may help you. Good luck.

  32. Sleeping Dog says:

    On an entirely pleasant subject, I want to comment on the unusual whether here in northern New England. The weather in November should consist of damp, raw, windy days featuring leaden sky’s, that are more likely to trigger seasonal affective disorder rather than smiles. But what we’ve had were 3 days in the mid 70’s followed by cooler, but still warm for the season temps. All punctuated by cloudless, blue sky’s that might make a southern Californian jealous.

    It won’t last but I’m enjoying it.

  33. Kathy says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Protected by Cantauri prophecy, or by unfulfilled alien fortune cookies?

  34. CSK says:

    @Sleeping Dog:
    Same here in northeastern Mass. Enjoy.

  35. Monala says:

    @Skookum: thanks for the ideas!

  36. Kathy says:

    This week I’m doing a fully-loaded bean stew. That is: beans, lentils, barley, rice, white beans, and either lima beans or chickpeas.

    The thing is I want it to have a meaty, savory feel and flavor, too. So I’m adding 1/4 kilo of beef. I’m undecided whether to use ground beef, browned for a bit and then cooked for a lengthy interval with the lima beans and barley, before adding the other beans and rice and tomato sauce, etc. The second option is a piece of beef cooked in the broth the same way, then fished out to be shredded and added back.

  37. Mu Yixiao says:


    For a stew, I’d go with a small roast cut into cubes, seared, and then slow cooked in the broth.

  38. CSK says:

    Well, Trump has warned DeSantis that if DeSantis runs for prez in 2024, DeSantis might “hurt himself very badly.”

    Trump also claims that he knows many “unflattering things” about DeSantis.

    Straight out of the Mafia playbook.

  39. Mu Yixiao says:


    The nature of my job is that it’s very unpredictable, day-to-day. I support a dozen different departments, and usually things balance out so that I’ve got a steady flow of work across the 9 hours I’m here. Monday, however, was balls-to-the-wall all day (running up against some tight deadlines and a pile of outside stuff coming in).

    Today? I think I’ve done about 30 minutes of work. There’s nothing. I don’t want to be charging at full steam all day every day, but… sitting and doing nothing for 9 hours really gets to me.

  40. Kathy says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Thanks. I hadn’t considered cubes.

    I may go with the cut I use for shredding, but cut it into cubes first.

    And I think I’ve some dried peas, too, I can add to the mix.

    On the side I have some rare russet potatoes (they’re very rare here). I’m thinking some sort of stuffed, twice bakes deal with a creamy mustard sauce and cheese.

  41. Mu Yixiao says:


    Cubes are standard for stew in these parts. In fact, the scraps from cutting primals into roasts and steaks are cut into cubes or short strips and sold at the meat counter as “stew meat”. 🙂

  42. CSK says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Same in these parts.

  43. wr says:

    Strong recommendation for the Swedish miniseries The Playlist, a drama about the creation and founding of Spotify. It’s not as much wild fun as the American series about psycho founder/CEOs, but because there are no psychos here, the show can get a lot deeper into real ideas.

    Oh, and when you’re done, you’ll want to check out the singer playing “Bobbi T” on the series. She’s a Swedish artist who goes by the name Janice — but you can find a Spotify playlist of her work if you search the site for Bobbi T…

  44. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Joe: Agreed, I’m waiting too.

  45. Kathy says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Here as well. I know how the cut I want handles when cooked, but not the ones sold in cubes.

  46. Liberal Capitalist says:

    So… looks like with Fox News, Trump is dead to them.

    This is not reporting news, and even beyond expressing and opinion… but it is setting direction and policy for the GOP. After all, who needs all that messy leadership committee organization structure when you are the propaganda control outlet of MAGA. It’s the old Soviet and Chinese communist model of leadership change.

    Trump out, DeSantis in, and DeSantis is the boss.

    Done and Done.

    Trump must be going ballistic. I can’t wait to see how this washes out.

    Trump is gonna crush Barney DeSantis.

  47. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Mu Yixiao: Uck. I hated doing nothing at work. I would find stuff to do rather than just sit there and wait for my foreman to come up with something.

  48. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Liberal Capitalist: I just can’t see DeSantis being up to the task.

  49. Mu Yixiao says:


    I’ve been doing a lot of “I’ll walk to the other side of the factory to see if there’s anything there”.

    And, of course, reading a lot of OTB.

  50. dazedandconfused says:

    With a warning lift of his skunk tail Trump announces his candidacy for the nom.

  51. Kathy says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Between February and May this year, it was non-stop work. Longer days, too, and some weekends to tie up loose ends like petty cash reimbursements. That’s why I took my first tranche of vacation days then.

    Upon returning, there was still some work to do that week. The next six weeks, though, it was as quiet and slow as it’s ever been. I spent a lot of time browsing old OTB posts (I think I read or glanced at most of them between Jan 2017 and mid-2021.

    I also browsed Wikipedia. That took me back to elementary school days, when I browsed the encyclopedia at home when I had nothing to do and someone else was hogging the TV.

    IMO, that was a better use of my time than work.

  52. Liberal Capitalist says:


    @Liberal Capitalist: I just can’t see DeSantis being up to the task.

    Gotta say, he may not be ready, but the Fox minions are all lined up for him.

    Take a look at the comments:

    The Greek chorus is speaking in unison.

    I scrolled through a lot. There is not a single comment defending Trump. NONE

    His time is over.

    But we know that Trump’s death rattle will continue to destroy their party. Because Trump is the horror movie antihero that just. won’t. die.

  53. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Mu Yixiao: Dawg, my last job I was walking all over the job site looking for stuff to do (it was part of my job description). It was really very rare, I couldn’t find something. Thinking about it, I can’t think of a time I didn’t. A construction job site nearly always has a few loose threads.

  54. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Liberal Capitalist: From your keyboard to God’s eyes. Being an atheist I don’t think god has anything to do with it, but if he wants to weigh in, I am not opposed. (assuming god is not satan)

  55. Mu Yixiao says:


    I’m an admin (glorified secretary). Most admins at our company are assigned to one–maybe two–departments, and handle regular tasks. I’m the “Admin-at-Large”–I do daily tasks for roughly a dozen different departments–but the time required for those tasks are a dice roll*.

    I (and my manager) keep reaching out to departments who keep saying “We need help!” And 99.44% of the time, the response is: Ummm… I’ll maybe get back to you later.

    The one complaint I have about our company** is that the managers have no fucking clue how to delegate tasks.

    When I was working as a stagehand or working in a shop, I could always walk up to someone and say “I’ve got nothing to do, put me to work”, and they would.

    * For example: I handle all the incoming checks–open the envelopes, sort them by account, and put them in an order that makes it easier for AR to do their job. Today there were zero checks. We usually process between 1 and 2 million dollars in checks every day.

    ** It’s an amazing company to work for.

  56. Kathy says:

    St. Elon doth Tweet: “Please note that Twitter will do lots of dumb things in coming months. ”

    Isn’t it a little late for that warning? Twitter did the dumbest thing by becoming Elon’s new toy.

    I forget where I heard or read that Elon buying Twitter was like Elmer Fudd buying a platform full of Bugs Bunny clones. And I still don’t see how any of that helps put people on Mars.

  57. Mikey says:

    Today’s Andor. Wow. No spoilers, just…wow.