As more votes are tallied, the “blue wave” is looking a lot bigger than it did last week, driven in large part by a huge spike in turnout. Still, a lot of Americans plainly feel left out of the political process. Why vote, many wonder, when it seems like the most powerful people always win?

This week in OtherWords, Sam Pizzigati says progressives in Congress need to pursue a much bolder agenda to break up extreme wealth and rebuild the power of ordinary Americans. And, he reports, there are already a lot of good ideas for how to do that.

Meanwhile, Tracey L. Rogers reports on the modest but important shift of white women voters against the GOP. And Jasmine Aguilera reflects on how candidates like Beto O’Rourke and other red-state progressives have redefined their states by waging extremely competitive contests.

Finally, Jill Hightower explains why arguing with people who don’t think like you is so infuriating. Jim Hightower skewers a White House report claiming poverty is somehow over. And Khalil Bendib draws up Trump’s plans for his new acting attorney general.

New This Week…

Democrats Won Big. Can They Go Bold, Too? | Sam Pizzigati
The party’s leaders have been far too cautious in the past. Newer ideas could spark real change in who owns and runs America.

Dear White Women: There May Be Hope for You After All | Tracey L. Rogers
For years there’s been a growing divide between white women and women of color. This year it may have narrowed.

Beto O’Rourke’s Lasting Legacy | Jasmine Aguilera
Maybe states like Texas, Florida, and Georgia aren’t as fundamentally conservative as people thought.

Why Holiday-Season Arguments With Relatives Are So Frustrating | Jill Richardson
Most of us think if everyone just knew the facts, they’d agree with us. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way.

Did You Hear? Poverty Ended | Jim Hightower
Trump’s advisers say there’s no more need for anti-poverty programs. Let’s see them raise a family of four on $25,000.

Battering Ram | Khalil Bendib
Trump’s new acting attorney general has exactly one purpose.

In Case You Missed It…

Midterm Takeaway: We Need a Lot More Democracy | Peter Certo
Republicans banked this election on lies, fear-mongering, and rule-rigging. It almost worked.

The ‘Blue Wave’ Was Also a ‘Muslim Wave’ | Domenica Ghanem
In the most Islamophobic election in history, Muslim candidates scored big wins by embracing progressive policies.

How Aristocracies Are Born | Josh Hoxie
Our country is on track to be run by the children of billionaires. Our ancestors recognized this and took action. We can too.

An Honest Look at Poverty in the Heartland | Saurav Sarkar
Hardship is a lot more widespread in the Badger State than the official numbers would have you believe.

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Peter Certo is the editorial manager of the Institute for Policy Studies and the editor of OtherWords.org.