As I stood in a long line while waiting for our local polling place to open on Election Day, the irony of the moment was inescapable. The Covid-19 pandemic had caused a relocation from our established Montgomery County voting venue to what, decades earlier, had been the elementary school for our children.

A reduction in personnel, a product of the virus, had seen it expand from three districts to four. The lengthy wait—already starting at 25 minutes before the poll’s opening—reflected both the enhanced national turnout as well as the increase in districts.

Staring at the walls inside of the school, I thought back to a period of the late eighties, a time when the emergence of Ronald Reagan had propelled me to register as a Republican. It had galvanized a belief in me—as well as in so many others—that the party was one of sensibility, consistency and maturity.

It was one that was mindful of fiscal restraint, reliable in terms of military security and respectful of those with opposing viewpoints. In full, the Republican party was clearly the one composed of adults.

Now, as I awaited my entry, mask-on, I was about to cast a vote for a Democrat. It would be the second such consecutive registration of a vote against President Donald Trump.

Now, as I awaited my entry, mask-on, I was about to cast a vote for a Democrat. It would be the second such consecutive registration of a vote against President Donald Trump.

Despite our incumbents’ various acts which may have met my approval, I had found his lack of honesty and leadership regarding our pandemic to be cause alone for dismissal. In addition, his blatant disregard for established principles of our great republic—from the Constitution to respect for established allies and marginalization of bigoted views—all to be intolerable.

Just days later, as I passed by Independence Hall, I experienced a feeling of rebirth in the city of our nations’ birth. Philadelphia and its collar counties had played a key role in the election of Joe Biden—an honorary local from Delaware and a reasonable adult who is a long-time veteran of elected office.

As statistics would show, my choice was not an anomaly. In fact, the transfer of votes from Republican to Democrat in surrounding counties was substantial.

According to CNBC, the margin of victory for the presidential Democratic vote in my own Montgomery County increased from 21 percent to 26 percent in four years. Delaware County picked up four points, while Chester County increased by seven points.

Results of races in lower offices reflected little such change. Apparently, the presidential outcome indicated more of a repudiation of Trump than of the party itself.

Now, we have seen a return of many voters to the blue side of the fence, believing, as do I, that four years of normalcy in the White House will do much to put our out-of-control country back on its axis.

Voters can be won over by magnetic personalities. The term “Reagan Democrats” was coined during the eighties, as a massive number of white, often working-class Democrats opted for the conservative leanings of Reagan. Likewise, many of those same voters attached themselves to Trump, believing the Democrats had abandoned them.

Now, we have seen a return of many voters to the blue side of the fence, believing, as do I, that four years of normalcy in the White House will do much to put our out-of-control country back on its axis. In the meantime, either Biden will do a quality job or we might have the option of a better Republican candidate in 2024.

Whether the Republicans retain control of the Senate will be decided with the two Georgia runoff races on January 5. If they do, they can act as a counterbalance against progressive forces in the Democratic party who will try to influence Biden. Biden has shown a willingness to work across party lines over the years.

Philosopher John Dewey, in discussing the idea of a democracy, may have put it best. He said: “…I think that unless democratic habits of thought and action are part of the fiber of a people, political democracy is insecure.”

As our country’s body count for those lives taken by Covid-19 now reaches over 235,000, I am reminded daily of my decision to vote for Biden. And as the carnage continues, it does so without any visible federal intervention, as the person leading the executive branch of our government continues to rue his election loss and contest the race, without merit.

Jeff Hurvitz (jrhurvitz@aol.com) is a freelance writer who is a native Philadelphian and resides in Abington Township.

4 thoughts on “Jeff Hurvitz: A surreal election ends with a call for decency, both in Philadelphia and across the nation”

  1. Our country is not out of control. Just out of the hands of the establishment political machine. Trump is not a politician, and is for the people. That’s why he is so loved.
    Biden is a fool and international laughing stock. We will reap what we sow here for four years then get to see new life again.

    1. Thomas, you use “so loved” quite liberally. His behavior is often tolerated by his biggest supporters because of their approval ofany of his initiatives. But so many are embarrassed by his disregard for proper behavior in that highest of offices. It is akin to burning down the house while rearranging the furniture.

Leave a (Respectful) Comment

Your email address will not be published.