Election day has come and gone—unless, of course, a person lives in Broward County, Florida, where elections seem to linger quite a bit longer than other places.
There was an incredible amount of build-up to last Tuesday’s midterm elections. Anyone who watches any television knows that as commercials in the weeks leading up to the vote were dominated by political ads. Nationwide, billions of dollars were spent on advertising in an effort to build up candidates or, more often, cast negative light on their opponents. Somewhat surprisingly, a Green Bay TV station shared in a news story what candidates had spent with them and the number was in the millions—again, for just one Green Bay TV station.
With all that money spent and all that build-up, a person might expect something equally colossal to happen after it is all over. Granted, newly elected candidates do not take office for several months yet, but what happens after an election never seems to match the grandeur of the election itself—and that is OK because people need to remember that government is a portion of society but not all there is to it.
Think about last Wednesday. As people awoke they might have checked out the previous night’s election results on the news, celebrated their candidates who won, or lamented their candidates who lost. Then they went off to their jobs and their meetings and their other tasks like they would any other day. The same will be true after January’s inaugurations come and go.
Yes, elections do matter. As new governors, senators, representatives, and others take office they will work to push legislation that they feel is in the best interest of their constituents. Others will push back if they feel there is a better way.
In the meantime, the private sector will continue to churn along with an unchanged goal of maximizing profits. It, too, is connected to government and the people who pass laws which affect the private sector, but its primary focus remains on producing products and/or providing services—no matter who is in office.
In the days following a big election people also continue to go to school, go to church, volunteer in organizations, etc. Elections matter, but life goes on no matter who won last Tuesday. —Mark Sherry