by Alex Miller-Mignone
"We live in a free society and our government is only as good as the willingness of our people to participate. Therefore, no matter what your party affiliation or if you don't have a party affiliation, do your duty, cast your ballot and let your voice be heard."
George W. Bush, assuming the fix was in and giving some of the worst advice of his career,
7 November 2006
Actually, I thought we were going to do fine yesterday. Shows what I know.... Look, this was a close election. If you look at race by race, it was close. But the cumulative effect, however, was not too close. It was a thumpin.
George W. Bush, attempting to describe reality, White House press conference,
8 November 2006
Everyone happy with Tuesdays results? As Yogi Berra once famously said, Its deja vu all over again! Not since 1994 has the American public been treated to a political rout of this magnitude, and, as in that landslide election which swept the GOP into power for the first time in 40 years, we have the Black Hole to thank for it.
These two watershed elections have much in common beside the dramatic volte face of their resultsboth have mid-Scorpio Suns in opposition to the Black Hole at 16 Taurus, a situation evocative of major reversal and sweeping change. In 1994 the upheaval was arguably greater, with Republicans picking up 49 House seats and 8 Senate seats after a biblically-correct 40 years in the political wilderness. Not all House races have been certifiedas of this writing, ten are still undecided, with at least two requiring recounts and one runoffbut as of the writing of this article (11/9/06) the Democrats have picked up at least 30 House seats and 6 in the Senate. This Democratic resurgence follows only 12 years of House minority, and just four in the Senate, but the damage done by the GOP in that comparatively short period may be irreversible.
Saturn, too, was in a similar position in both electionsin 1994, it was coming to station astride the Quasar at 5 Pisces, which I then predicted could elicit pervasive voter irritability and discontent with the status quo. On Tuesday Saturn approached another station degree and at 24 Leo opposed a Quasar at 25 Aquarius; much the same atmosphere of disaffection ruled the electorate nationwide and once again the party in power reaped the whirlwind.
Jupiter, too, was replaying its 1994 role; in that election the planet of politics and politicians observed from 23 Scorpio, conjoined powerful and transformative Pluto; in 2006, its position was 26 Scorpio, from where it was squared by Saturn. Venus and Mars reversed rolesin 1994, Venus was at 7 Scorpio and Mars at 17; in 2006, Mars was at 9 Scorpio and Venus at 17. In both elections, voter anger and womens choices were pivotal.
The extent of the Blue Wave is considerableDemocrats have retaken both the House of Representatives and the Senate, albeit by a razor-thin margin of 51-49 in the latter. Not a single Democratic incumbent lost his or her seat in any House, Senate or gubernatorial race nationally, nor did Republicans pick up a single open seat. Of the remaining undecided races still too close to call, all are defending Republican incumbents, and all are within 2 points, many less than a point difference, with 7 leaning Republican and 3 Democratic.
Before the 1994 election, Republicans trailed Democrats in Governors mansions across the country, 20-29; afterward, they were in the majority, 31-17. Democrats have now returned us to the status quo ante GOP and by picking up 7 on Tuesday now control governorships 28-20 (with 2 independents, in 1994 just 1). In addition, Democrats have vastly increased their majorities in State Houses nationwide. Before this election, they controlled just 21 more than half of the 7382 state legislature seats; they now have a 667 seat advantage. Democrats now control both upper and lower Houses in 23 states, up from 19 and the largest margin since 1994, while the GOP has lost ascendancy in four states, dropping from 20 to 16.
Venus position at 17 Scorpio, also in opposition to the Black Hole at 16 Taurus, has yielded some dramatic changes for women on Capitol Hill. There will be 16 female Senators in the 110th Congress, the largest number ever, and Americans will see their first female Speaker of the House in California Representative Nancy Pelosi. Womens reproductive rights were also defended by the populace in both elections, and both times by electorates in traditionally conservative enclaves. In 1994, Wyoming voters rejected anti-abortion Ballot Initiative 1, and in 2006 it was the turn of South Dakotans to overturn a statewide ban passed by the legislature which was widely touted as the next major US Supreme Court challenge to Roe v. Wade, now in the dustbin of history.
There were a few sweet savorings in the results as well; of the three races I profiled in the run-up to the elections, all three went down to justifiable defeat. Ralph Reed lost his bid for Georgia Lieutenant Governor in the July primary, and never even made it to the November ballot; Katherine Harris, having already relinquished her House seat for a Senate run, was trounced roundly, losing 38%-60% to incumbent Democrat Bill Nelson; and incumbent Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum, two-term veteran and the number three man in the Senate GOP leadership, was bloodied by Democratic challenger Robert Casey Jr, losing by an 18 point margin, 41%-59%.
In my election preview article, I stated that galactic factors could be read in two waysas a pervasive shift in the balance of power, or as massive vote fraud and deception. Thankfully, power has shifted, but not, apparently, for lack of trying to manipulate the vote. Many thousands of complaints were registered on voter hotlines across the nation, with innumerable problems and glitches with e-vote systems. Machines that failed to boot up in a timely fashion caused poll opening delays of several hours in Ohios Cuyahoga county, the scene of much of the electoral chicanery in 2004 that brought the administration a second term (on a positive note, the mastermind behind that debacle, Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell, went down in flames for his gubernatorial bid). Reports of machines registering votes for the opposing candidate were common, and it is quite possible that the margin of the Democratic victory would have been still greater if every registration had been honored, every cast vote counted.
But as elections go, this one pleases. There is still much work to doe-vote systems which provide no paper trail or have no auditing capacity must be de-certified by state legislatures, registration must be regularized and crypto-poll taxes such as voter ID cards must be eliminated. We have two years before these problems will once again threaten to swamp our democracy and silence the true voice of the people; lets not waste a minute.
Alex Miller-Mignone is a professional writer and astrologer, author of The Black Hole Book and The Urban Wicca, former editor of "The Galactic Calendar," and past president of The Philadelphia Astrological Society.
His pioneering work with Black Holes in astrological interpretation began in 1991, when his progressed Sun unwittingly fell into one. Alex can be reached for comment or services at Alixilamirorim@aol.com.