5 Short Takes: We’re in the money. But, enough? A fresh look at Nelson County. And Riggleman doesn’t surprise.

1. The Democrats have significantly out raised the Republicans for this year’s midterms. The Democrats have taken in 252 million as compared with 172 million for the Republicans.

Leslie Cockburn has out raised Denver Riggleman. But more importantly, the Democrats have gotten most of their money from small donors. “Democratic challengers have outpaced Republican incumbents in large part by drawing in millions of dollars from many thousands of supporters online — a strategy wielded by Barack Obama and Bernie Sanders in presidential elections but never replicated on a massive scale in House races, until now.” From an article in the Washington Post.

2. But as Ezra Klein points out in a recent article from Vox a minority government is making decisions for most of the people. We all know that Trump lost the election by almost 3 million votes and just recently Brett Kavanuagh was confirmed to the Supreme Court even though a solid majority of the American people were against it. Klein writes “Republicans control the US Senate despite winning fewer votes than Democrats, and it’s understood that House Democrats need to beat Republicans by as much as 7 or 8 points in the popular vote to hold a majority in the chamber. Next year, it’s possible that Republicans will control the presidency and both chambers of Congress despite having received fewer votes for the White House in 2016 and for the House and Senate in 2018.”

3. A recent collaboration between researchers at the Census Bureau, Harvard and Brown Universities came up with The Opportunity Atlas. It’s an attempt to find out which neighborhoods give children the best chance to arise out of poverty. But it also gives a wealth of information about the economic conditions of every county in America. The first thing you will see about Nelson County is that there is West Side/East Side split with the West Side doing better. If you have the time it is fascinating map to look at and presents a portrait of Nelson County in over 30 different variables from hourly wage & household income to how many young people stay in the county.

4. In the annals of being a hypocrite, Mitch McConnells recent statements calling the deficit “very disturbing” must be up there. The governments fiscal year ended September 30th and deficit was 779 billion and it is expected to grow larger. Of course, McConnell said the only way to control the deficit is to cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. He extends his hypocrisy even further by blaming the Democrats for not helping the Republicans control it. McConnell is becoming almost as brazen as Trump.

5. Lastly, Denver Riggleman’s new ad traffics in fear mongering about immigration. It is from the typical Republican play book where “building the wall’ is more important than passing comprehensive immigration reform. The Freedom Caucus Riggleman is so eager to join will not let him compromise and let him vote for any immigration reform. Better to use fear to garner votes.

Louis Harpster