Issues & Insights

With Elections Broken, Free States Must Step Up

The Red Puddle is now a Spurt. Like slicing into an artery (as this correspondent once did while absent-mindedly wielding a box-cutter) and watching a 10-foot crimson spray transverse the floor.

Lately drowned in the subsequent bloodbath are Kari Lake (Arizona governor, +3.5 points in final Real Clear Politics average), Blake Masters (Arizona Senate, +.3 but lost by 5), Adam Laxalt (Nevada Senate, +3.4), and any hope of a Senate and even a meaningful House majority. 

And worse yet, any prospect of reversing the catastrophic economic, energy and woke social policies of the pathetic current Administration and its fellow travelers across still-Blue America.

Conjecture as to the causes of this decidedly unsettling outcome abound. “Candidate quality.” Roe’s reversal. The omnipresent and often omni-aggravating Donald. Or, as predicted here, the appearance of sufficient votes to swing outcomes after convenient Election Day irregularities and overtime vote counts all magically favored one party.

No matter. The party of the most unpopular and incompetent White House occupant in recent history – running a collection of non-entities, failures and petty tyrants along with one brain-damaged trust-fund radical – bucked all midterm convention. 

And with that seemingly impossible outcome, the system of selecting our leaders is now either irretrievably broken or corrupt, with the machinery in erstwhile “swing states” decisively in control of one party. In other words, Americans can no longer look to elections to effect the popular will or address our pressing challenges at the federal level or in those provinces.

Yet… one can gaze toward three states whose restoration of electoral integrity yielded vastly different results.  Georgia, which stood tall against the entire “Woke Industrial Complex,” including Major League Baseball and Faux POTUS, in reversing its previous shameful abdication of electoral processes to demagogue Stacey Abrams. Result: record turnouts and Abrams’ banishment to the ash heap of mediocrity by Governor Brian Kemp.

Florida, where Kevlar-tough Governator Ron DeSantis had dispatched the incompetent, habitual vote-extending election heads of two blue counties. Which enabled a statewide landslide for him and his Senate and House ticket-mates and the blue-to-red transformation even of wildly liberal Palm Beach and Miami-Dade Counties.

Plus Texas, where MAGA conservative Secretary of State Ken Paxon makes a “priority” of prosecuting election fraud following 2017’s legislative reforms in “state election integrity.” There, Governor Greg Abbott annihilated Harold Stassen-runalike Beto O’Rourke by double digits.

These leaders’ reform-secured power base in the nation’s second-, third-, and eighth-most populous states positions them to exert a hefty counterweight to mounting federal oppression. Meaning a creative pooling of their combined massive potential influence could shift the balance of power from hopelessly woke and weird Washington and Wall Street.

Their states have paved the way in championing school choice. Corralling critical race theory (CRT) and transgender ideology – an effort defamed as “Don’t Say Gay” in Florida yet resulting in virtue-signaling Disney’s public disembowelment. Pushing back against “gender-affirming care” for youth. Freeing their states from the grip of COVID Cops. And re-routing illegal immigrants to blue “jurisdictions.”

Meanwhile, Texas and Florida have been at the forefront of another, quieter movement: using state financial clout to rein in Woke Capital, in particular barring investment of state-controlled assets with firms employing politicized, lefty – and highly subjective – Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) factors or actively disinvesting from firearms and energy.  Other states have gotten into the act: Reuters earlier this year catalogued 44 new laws or bills targeting companies that have “waded into fractious social debates.”

So imagine for a moment if, with the DeSantis-Kemp-Abbott axis as the anchor and treading the paths of “sanctuary” jurisdictions who refuse to enforce federal laws, “free states” reclaimed their sovereignty in a federalist system and took the same battles to the “puzzle palaces on the Potomac?” (Essentially making official an option explored by Michael Anton as Banlieues Rogues.)

  • Pooled resources to defend Texas’s border and resolutely refused to accept illegals from other jurisdictions, not as political one-offs (blue state-bound buses and flights) but as systematically enforced policy?
  • Created an interstate consortium of alternatives to Obamacare, defying Washington in shifting the focus to cost-saving, people-empowering consumer-driven care, including in Medicaid?
  • Refused to let rogue agencies like the IRS and the FBI operate in their states until reforms were implemented, and barred the Justice Department from interfering in the re-establishment of law and order in their urban centers?
  • Followed Abbott’s and DeSantis’s lead in essentially criminalizing underage transgender surgery while passing Dobbs-blessed and voter-favored abortion restrictions (i.e., post-15 weeks)?
  • Went Florida’s pro-fatherhood initiatives one better by pursuing Hungarian-style incentives – including loans and grants – promoting marriage and childbearing and raising in two-parent families?
  • Further flouted the feds by opening oil and natural gas spigots – and coal mines and power plants – to unleash fossil fuel production and usage, with some Western states outright claiming control of closed-off federal lands in their states?
  • Took steps to decouple their state economies from China – subsidizing the insourcing of supply chains and manufacturing jobs?

A now-popular slogan in this pundit’s state reads: “DeSantis 2024: Make America Florida.” Could bold, confrontational action by this now even more empowered leader and his Red-State peers break the re-cemented Democratic electoral stranglehold – and make “MAF” (+T&G) the new MAGA?

Bob Maistros is a messaging and communications strategist, crisis specialist, and former political speechwriter. He can be reached at

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  • DeSantis will be a good leader some day if the USA survives. He does not have the resources to go up against the very deep state and globalists that Trump does.

  • Of course, the populations of these states give them proportionally more influence. But there are many other states that are part of this “alliance.” Missouri, Iowa, Oklahoma, much of the South, the Dakotas, etc. If these states all act with unity of purpose, there’s little the elites can do about it.

  • Don’t forget, however, that Brian Kemp is an election fraud denier, which could hurt Herschel Walker (we’ll see). Georgia still allows drop boxes, a prime source of election fraud.

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