Tonight Was One of the Great Political Blowouts of Modern History

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Unemployment is at 3.7 percent, a level so low we’ve reached it only once before in my entire lifetime. GDP is growing 3 percent per year. Wages are rising nicely. Inflation is tooling along at a very modest 2 percent. Manufacturers’ shipments are healthy. Consumer spending is strong and household debt is low. Aside from the dotcom boom, consumer confidence is at a 40-year high.

And yet, Republicans are going to lose three dozen seats in the House and cede control to the Democrats. Has any party ever done so badly in the middle of such strong economic performance?

I guess there was LBJ in 1966, after passing the Civil Rights Act and losing the South forever. But that’s about it.

In raw numbers this might not be the biggest wave election ever, but once you account for the economy it’s one of the great political blowouts of modern history. Donald Trump will never admit it, but don’t be fooled. He was crushed and repudiated tonight in a way that few presidents ever have been.

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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