The “Unlikely Voter”
Last week the Baltimore Sun released a story surrounding a Baltimore County Executive race poll that has left each campaign analyzing their current perceived positions in the hopes of answering the question “What do we do next?” Not a simple question to answer now less than a week out from the primary and early voting about to conclude, but that’s what campaigns do. They adjust and adapt to the environment as any living organism must to stay alive. This isn’t new, polling numbers aren’t prophesies and consulting firms aren’t modern day Delphic oracles. What is new however is the distinct failure of traditional institutions to account for and measure an unconventional electorate that doesn’t fit the definition of “likely voter.”
The election of Donald Trump has galvanized numerous groups across the nation, but none so much as American women. It would be one thing to say that there was a large organized protest in Washington D.C. the day after the 2017 Inauguration, but it would be a grievous misrepresentation. Millions marched across the world in support of human rights, women’s rights, healthcare, and Immigration reform. The reasons were many but underlying the policy and politics was the collective voice of defiance that continues to lift their movement like a rising tide that has yet to recede.
Conservative critics continue to shout, “Defiance against what? What rights have been infringed upon or freedoms limited since Trump took office?” They fail to grasp the fundamental elements of their own movements in the last ten years. The unapologetic disrespect is real. The indignation is real. The disobedience is real. The defiance is against the sobering reality that our President, though American, is the material and philosophical embodiment of what it is to be Un-American.
These activists and self proclaimed political outsiders do not always meet the criteria of the “likely voter.” They are the women that have born the brunt of change in a male dominated workforce and fear regression. They are the traditionally disenfranchised American communities that bear witness to the uptick in hate crimes and fear for the future of their families. They are the new generation of voters that don't have a voting history yet. They have come of age in the shadow of 9/11 living with the knowledge that their government will do what it takes to protect its investment on foreign shores but fall inexcusably short of protecting their lives and futures here at home. This is the unlikely voter that 400 person polls fail to capture.
Baltimore County, and all of Maryland, will soon see the extent to which this wholly American movement will impact the 2018 election. They won’t be voting for Trump this year, but they will be navigating a field wrought with similar influences. False prophets must exude great effort to convince others that they are faithful, agents of change, or “real”, but any lion that has to remind you of how loud they can roar is no lion at all. You can’t blame them though. When an entire career has been made from pandering to a mob values and principles are no longer present in their rhetoric. There is simply a shell of an empty suit crying for attention.
I cast my lot with the army of “unlikely voters” that has yet to Emerge in the wake of Our Revolution against the unacceptable behavior of powerful men. Together We Will prove once and for all that while we differ widely in opinion, we are truly Indivisible.
Delegate Maryland General Assembly
Marine Combat Veteran