Way back in 2016, when Hillary Clinton was running as the front-runner, Michigan was either a stumbling block or a turning point, depending on how you looked at it. The polls said that Hillary Clinton would cruise to victory, effectively sewing up her nomination. But in a surprise twist, Sanders won by a small plurality. Even though it was a small margin, it suddenly changed the narrative of the race, and the "concerns" started showing up whether Hillary Clinton could win "White, Working Class Voters". This Tuesday, with Joe Biden in the lead, and six states voting, Michigan was one of the states that Sanders could post his hopes on. Overconfidence had played into Sanders hands before, and there was a chance that after his Super Tuesday losses, his supporters would be emboldened to show up. Alas, it was not to be, and Michigan broadly voted for Joe Biden. It would take something extraordinary for the race to go back to Bernie.
This weekend, Qousqous told me that the country would be in chaos by next weekend. It seemed like a piece of unchracteristic hyperbole. Yesterday, for me, was the day that the prophecy came true, and the week was only half done. The NBA cancelled its season due to a player testing positive for Covid-19. Large swaths of the public life and economic activity of the United States are shutting down. The stock market looks ready to have its largest weekly drop, percentage-wise, ever. The incumbent president, who is generally personally unpopular but has managed to point to a strong economy, is now floundering. Things have changed. Things will continue to change.
Electoral politics, at every level and at every phase, are an important part of our nation's political life. But sometimes unexpected events manage to eclipse them. Six weeks ago, the President of the United States was acquitted in an impeachment trial. Normally the echo of that would last much longer, but six weeks later, it is a footnote.
Things are changing.