“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere,” Dr Martin Luther King Jr famously said.
Suffice it to say that a threat to one democracy is a threat to all democracy, as well.
This is why an increasing global popular interest in American politics is to be applauded rather than dismissed. Our growing obsession with CNN, John King and his magic wall, though in good fun, has a practical justification.
Many were worried about the trend towards Trumpism. The trend away from truth. A brewing recipe for the fall of a once great, 245-year-old democracy.
Mid-term election results in the United States allow American democracy, and the world at large, a brief moment of respite.
Aside from the scores of gubernatorial races and the entire House of Representatives going up for grabs along with half the seats in the Senate, the various Secretary of State races in swing states across the U.S. have garnered less attention but may prove the most pivotal in the 2024 presidential contest and beyond.
Each Secretary of State has significant power and influence as an election official and the fear was that election denying MAGA candidates could overturn the 2024 race in Donald Trump’s favour, even if his opponent won the vote legitimately.
But every Secretary of State race in a swing state featuring a election denying, Trump endorsed Republican candidate was won by the Democratic opponent. These were victories for truth. Victories for democracy. Victories for hope.
The Democrats held in Arizona, Wisconsin and Michigan and gained in Nevada, all narrowly won states for Joe Biden in 2020 that could have come under threat had GOP candidates prevailed.
These races above all represent not an endorsement of the Democratic Party; indeed, President Biden currently lays claim to the lowest approval rating in American history. This was a rejection of Trump’s attempts to erode freedoms.
In more practical political terms, the Republicans taking the House back means they can delay legislation and block much of Biden’s agenda for the next two years. That the majority is slim and no red wave arrived means hardline MAGA representatives like Georgia’s controversial Marjorie Taylor Greene hold an inflated amount of power.
The far-right of the GOP could leverage threats of not holding the party line on votes to push the party further back towards Trump and his agenda.
As for the upper chamber, holding the Senate majority means the Democrats can continue appointing their own judges and officials at a pace no administration has managed before.
No red wave ever came. This was the best by-the-numbers mid-term performance for the party in control of the White House in 20 years.
And yet still Donald Trump lingers. His 2024 run at taking back the Oval Office has begun. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has thrust himself upon the international stage and may prove a worthy challenger for the Republican nomination.
For now though, democracy breaths perhaps its first sigh of relief in far too long.