When I moved to Seattle, I knew that I was coming to a progressive region of the country, and did so intentionally. There are lots of places that have better year round weather than Seattle, but whose politics I can’t abide. I’d never be able to keep my mouth shut, surrounded by nieghbors who love Trump.
As Trump and the Republicans try to starve the federal government of money for anything but national defense, and as Trump stokes his ruby red base and inflames everyone else, we may be headed for a period where regional government matters more.
Enter the new blue wall of western and Pacific northwestern states.
Right now, blue states send more money to Washington, and get less back, than do red states. In effect, we are subsidizing all those people who wear red MAGA hats and wave their fists in the air every time Trump speaks. It’s not clear how that will shake out under the Trump/Republican tax plan; clearly there are some provisions that specifically target blue states. But I’m cautiously hopeful. If we get to keep more of our money, and if our elected officials can band together to forge progressive policies, I’m happy to leave places like Mississippi and West Virginia to their poor health outcomes, their staggering economies, and their nativist resentments.
We’re a long way from President Obama’s soaring rhetoric about there being no red or blue states, just the United States. But I didn’t vote to take us in the direction Trump wants to take us, and I’m trying to find hope in a situation that seems uniformly bad.