As Election Day approaches and with early in-person voting ongoing in dozens of states around the country, former President Barack Obama has issued a new call to action for Americans. With a new video message that he posted to his Twitter account on Monday, Obama called on Americans to pay close attention to races besides just the presidential race. He reminded folks that people who may never go to D.C. at all can often have very significant impacts on the lives of local communities. As Obama noted, offices and office-holders who have such a position of power include mayors and district attorneys, among others.
As the former president put it in his caption for the video:
‘From police reform to funding our schools, the officials with the most power to change the issues we care about in our communities are often found at the state and local levels. So educate yourselves up and down the ticket, make a plan to vote, and vote’
Check out his message below:
From police reform to funding our schools, the officials with the most power to change the issues we care about in our communities are often found at the state and local levels. So educate yourselves up and down the ticket, make a plan to vote, and vote: https://t.co/70CqTO5Gbf pic.twitter.com/6z2c7HZ7H4
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) October 19, 2020
One issue that could hinge on the outcome of local elections is redistricting. Following the 2020 Census, state legislatures across the country will be tasked with redrawing legislative district lines across their respective states. These lines can be manipulated to favor a particular political party, through means like breaking up populations of the opponents of those in power so that they’re in the minority in as many districts as possible. With that kind of scheme in place, those in power would get to stay in power because they’ve drawn district lines to make sure that their populations of their own supporters are in the majority in as many districts as possible. This manipulation of the redistricting process is called gerrymandering.
President Donald Trump’s own sinking political prospects seem like they’ve been dragging down the prospects of Republicans in other some races on the ballot. As of this Monday, Democrats are favored to win the majority of the U.S. Senate, according to FiveThirtyEight, with strong Democratic showings in races in Arizona, Colorado, Maine, North Carolina, and elsewhere. With Democrats in control of Congress, a potential Biden presidency would be significantly more free from the threat of Republican obstruction.
Check out Twitter’s response to Obama’s Monday call to action below: