On November 8th, Jim Wallis, President of Sojourners, offered commentary on the results of the Midterm Elections results from earlier in the week. Wallis said, “As we digest the results of Tuesday’s midterm elections, there are reasons for people of faith committed to social justice and the common good to be grateful and encouraged. There are also reminders of what we are up against and some real post-election dangers.”
Wallis expressed cautious optimism in reaction to the Democrats gaining control of the House of Representatives, suggesting that “the change in power in the House of Representatives will change Washington with the end of one party control of the federal government, and create a desperately needed check on Donald Trump’s power after two chaotic and frightening years where he faced virtually no limits or checks whatsoever.”
Wallis celebrated the success of various voting rights initiatives on the ballot across the country, particularly praising the adoption of Amendment 4 to the Florida Constitution that restored voting rights to 1.4 million people. Wallis said, “The success of this ballot initiative, which had strong support from voters in both parties, interest groups from across the ideological spectrum, and from people of faith, finally begins to reverse one of the most insidious continuations of Jim Crow-era policies designed to disenfranchise people of color.”
However, Wallis lamented President Donald Trump’s rhetoric leading up to the elections, suggesting that the President’s “racist and fear-based tactics energized and drove some of the higher turnout from whites, including white evangelicals.” Additionally, Wallis said that “efforts to limit minority participation in the election were widespread in these elections,” and were particularly blatant in Georgia and North Dakota.
Furthermore, Wallis has concerns that Trump’s move to replace Attorney General Jeff Sessions with Matt Whitaker may be an attempt to suppress Robert Mueller’s investigation. Wallis claimed, "this danger to the integrity of democracy is real and present,” and that this action “could quickly become the beginning of a constitutional crisis in America.”
In response to the election results and Donald Trump’s alarming actions, Wallis called on Christians everywhere: “Let us watch, pray, and be ready to act.”
Jim Wallis is available for interview.
The entirety of Jim Wallis’ reactions to the Midterm Election can be found at https://sojo.net/articles/what-midterm-elections-revealed-about-us