Energized? Then get to the ballot box.
The 2016 general election turned out to be disastrous for Democrats up and down ballot. From the presidency all the way down to state legislatures, Democrats lost ground at both the federal and state levels. As of 2017, Democrats only hold 16 governorships and 13 state legislatures. As we have seen in the first few weeks of the Trump Administration, elections have consequences. Based on this, you could conclude that the Democratic message isn't connecting with the electorate. However, if you dig deep down, there's another underlying story that might explain why Democrats lost so much ground electorally last year. While Hillary Clinton defeated Donald Trump in the popular vote by about 2.8 million votes, nearly 90 million eligible voters chose not to vote.
Hillary Clinton lost Florida by about 112,000 votes, Wisconsin by 22,784 votes, and Michigan by 10,000 votes. Those three vital states alone could have single handedly secured the electoral college for Hillary Clinton. Here in Missouri Jason Kander lost to Roy Blunt by 87,000 votes. Between St. Louis City and St. Louis County there are roughly 1,000,000 eligible voters. Only 612,633 of those eligible voters voted on election day. In two of the most Democratic counties in the state, if voter turnout had been a few percentage points higher there is a good chance Jason Kander would be representing us in the Senate today.
There has been a wave of activism by Democrats and since the election. Tens of thousands of people across the country and right here in St. Louis have taken to the streets to voice our opposition to the Trump Administration. Next week we have a chance to make our voices heard at the ballot box. The St. Louis Young Democrats have endorsed a slate of great candidates for Comptroller and Alderman. These candidates are:
Mayor: Tishaura Jones
Comptroller: Darlene Green
Alderman (Ward 5): Megan Betts
Alderman (Ward 9): Dan Guenther
Alderman (Ward 11): Sarah Wood Martin
Alderman (Ward 15): Megan-Ellyia Green
Alderman (Ward 17): Joe Diekemper
Alderman (Ward 19): Lindsay Pattan
As we approach the elections for Mayor, Comptroller, and Board of Aldermen next week, and look forward to the midterm elections in 2018, it is important to remember how important it is to exercise our constitutional right to vote. We have already seen the terrible policies coming out of a federal and state government under Republican control. It is up to you and me to show up to the polls next Tuesday and implore our friends and family to do the same.
Shayn Prapaisilp Vice President St. Louis Young Democrats