Offering asides, recommended links, blogworthy quotations, and more, In Brief is the Northwest Progressive Institute's microblog of world, national, and local politics.

Aside

Trump blows off ceremonial presidential duties so he can sulk in the White House

The magnitude of last Tuesday’s losses have sunk in.

For weeks this fall, an ebullient Trump traveled relentlessly to hold raise-the-rafters campaign rallies — sometimes three a day — in states where his presence was likely to help Republicans on the ballot.

But his mood apparently has changed as he has taken measure of the electoral backlash that voters delivered Nov. 6.

With the certainty that the incoming Democratic House majority will go after his tax returns and investigate his actions, and the likelihood of additional indictments by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III, Trump has retreated into a cocoon of bitterness and resentment, according to multiple administration sources.

Behind the scenes, they say, the president has lashed out at several aides, from junior press assistants to senior officials. “He’s furious,” said one administration official. “Most staffers are trying to avoid him.”

Trump may project confidence through social media or when he appears in public, but it’s apparent that behind the scenes, he’s not feeling confident at all. There really was a blue wave… and it hasn’t even crested yet. Races keep getting called in favor of Democrats, and in Florida (where recounts are underway), it’s unclear who won the top races: Trump’s loyalists or their Democratic opponents.

All those Democratic gains — and the ongoing media coverage of them — have seriously wounded Trump’s pride and left him feeling very bitter and angry.

Trump ought to have been able to see this coming. The pendulum has always historically swung back after periods of one party rule. But Trump is a narcissist and sociopath, so he was nicely positioned for a big emotional crash.

Although Democrats did win a number of special elections last year (and took back the governorship of New Jersey in addition to keeping the governorship of Virginia), the just-held midterms showed that Trump’s Republican Party isn’t invulnerable.

Democrats are on track to have their best showing in U.S. House races since the 1970s. The party has flipped seven governorships and increased the number of trifectas in its column. And it also took two U.S. Senate seats away from the Republicans in the southwest with the victories of Jacky Rosen and Kyrsten Sinema.

Photo

East Link continues to roll forward: This photo shows the new elevated guideway that will one day carry trains under construction above I-90 #CapturedByLight

East Link continues to roll forward: This photo shows the new elevated guideway that will one day carry trains under construction above I-90 #CapturedByLight

Recommended Link

Trial balloon or imminent news? Trump is preparing to remove Kirstjen Nielsen as Homeland Security secretary, aides say

The Washington Post: “Trump has told advisers he has decided to remove Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, and her departure from the administration is likely to occur in the coming weeks, if not sooner, according to five current and former White House officials.”

Video Clip

Highlights from the fifth episode of Saturday Night Live’s forty-fourth season:

The cold open: Jeff Sessions (Kate McKinnon) packs up his office as Sarah Huckabee Sanders (Aidy Bryant), Mike Pence (Beck Bennett), Eric Trump (Alex Moffat), Donald Trump Jr. (Mikey Day) and Robert Mueller (Robert De Niro) stop by.

Read More »

Photo

Inside King County Elections, Part II: Ballots literally fly into a tray after being scanned by an ultramodern ImageTrac-Lite optical scanner

Inside King County Elections, Part II: Ballots literally fly into a tray after being scanned by an ultramodern ImageTrac-Lite optical scanner

Photo

Inside King County Elections, Part II: Return ballot envelopes wait to be archived

Inside King County Elections, Part II: Return ballot envelopes wait to be archived

Photo

Greetings from peaceful Cannon Beach, Oregon, where representatives of NPI's staff and board are gathered for our annual post-election sojourn. We wish you a happy, tranquil Veterans Day weekend!

Greetings from peaceful Cannon Beach, Oregon, where representatives of NPI's staff and board are gathered for our annual post-election sojourn. We wish you a happy, tranquil Veterans Day weekend!

Photo

Inside King County Elections, Part II: This industrial strength Pitney Bowes sorting machine helps elections staff stay on top of hundreds of thousands of incoming ballots

Inside King County Elections, Part II: This industrial strength Pitney Bowes sorting machine helps elections staff stay on top of hundreds of thousands of incoming ballots

Aside

This year, Los Angeles is going all out to knock down transportation barriers to voting

Way to go, Los Angeles! Courtesy of Mayor Eric Garcetti’s campaign team, here’s an update on what America’s second largest metropolitan region is doing to make it easier for voters in Southern California to cast ballots.

Voting is our most fundamental right as Americans.

We know that 51% of California voters cite a lack of transportation as a factor in deciding not to vote — so we’re doing everything possible to make sure that nothing stands between you and your ballot.

Check out these nine ways we’re making it easier for you to get to and from the polls on November 6.

9 WAYS WE’RE MAKING IT EASIER TO GET TO THE POLLS ON ELECTION DAY

  1. Metro trains will be free all day.
  2. Metro buses will be free all day.
  3. LADOT’s DASH and Commuter Express buses will be free all day.
  4. Parking meters will be free within one block of polling places.
  5. Parking time limits will be relaxed within one block of polling places.
  6. Parking restrictions due to street cleaning will be suspended within one block of polling places.
  7. Permit parking will be suspended within one block of polling places.
  8. The first thirty minutes of Metro Bike Share will be free: use code 1162018.
  9. Access Services and Cityride will provide free rides to and from the polls for riders with disabilities and their companions.

Every vote counts in our democracy. Make your voice heard on Tuesday, November 6.

There is no good excuse for not voting. Be sure your ballot is in a drop box or at a post office by the last outgoing mail collection time before tomorrow night!

Video Clip

Highlights from the fourth episode of Saturday Night Live’s forty-fourth season:

Democrats are confident in the blue wave coming to vote in the midterm election.

Read More »

Photo

Retired oil refinery worker Steve Garey gives an in-person pitch for Initiative 1631

Retired oil refinery worker Steve Garey gives an in-person pitch for Initiative 1631

Photo

It ain't easy being wheezy: Initiative 1631 is doctor-recommended because it would clean up our air and water

It ain't easy being wheezy: Initiative 1631 is doctor-recommended because it would clean up our air and water

Photo

Ahmed Gaya rallies grassroots activists to sprint to the finish for Initiative 1631, the groundbreaking plan to put a price on pollution in Washington

Ahmed Gaya rallies grassroots activists to sprint to the finish for Initiative 1631, the groundbreaking plan to put a price on pollution in Washington

Video Clip

“I’m not asking any of you to give any blood,” civil rights legend Representative John Lewis said at a rally for Stacey Abrams. “I’m just asking you to go and vote like you never voted before. We have to vote!”

Photo

Washington Environmental Council leaders celebrate their work to pass Initiative 1631 following a Get-Out-The-Vote rally

Washington Environmental Council leaders celebrate their work to pass Initiative 1631 following a Get-Out-The-Vote rally

Photo

Progress starts with you! This November, be the change you wish to see in the world. Vote, and convince people you know to join you in fulfilling their civic duty!

Progress starts with you! This November, be the change you wish to see in the world. Vote, and convince people you know to join you in fulfilling their civic duty!

Quotation

It goes beyond politics now. I’m a Republican, I’ll finish a Republican as I cruise through my 91st year. But you’ve got to put the nation’s interests and the state’s interests ahead of politics… I just feel that the Democrats have got superior credentials to what is being offered.

— Virginia Republican Party dean John Warner endorses Democrats for Congress, including Senator Tim Kaine (via NBC News)

Tags: ,

Photo

State Senator Patty Kuderer and party switcher Rodney Tom Square off in one last candidate forum before the November midterms

State Senator Patty Kuderer and party switcher Rodney Tom Square off in one last candidate forum before the November midterms

Photo

Senator Patty Kuderer explains how a state bank - one of her ideas to improve our fiscal strength - could lower the costs of borrowing for Washington's local governments

Senator Patty Kuderer explains how a state bank – one of her ideas to improve our fiscal strength – could lower the costs of borrowing for Washington's local governments

Photo

Party switcher Rodney Tom argued at a recent candidate forum that he's the best fit for the 48th District in the Washington State Senate... even though it rejected his candidacy in the August Top Two election

Party switcher Rodney Tom argued at a recent candidate forum that he's the best fit for the 48th District in the Washington State Senate… even though it rejected his candidacy in the August Top Two election

Photo

Senator Maria Cantwell speaks at a Get Out The Vote rally following the Sounders' weekend victory over the San Jose Earthquakes

Senator Maria Cantwell speaks at a Get Out The Vote rally following the Sounders' weekend victory over the San Jose Earthquakes