This week we’re rounding up our last batch of op-eds before the midterms, and what better day than Halloween?

After all, the GOP campaign to keep control of Congress seems to rely entirely on spooking conservative white Americans. From attacks on immigrants to trans people and beyond, Jessicah Pierre writes, the White House is playing as dirty as it can. That has a cost, Jill Richardson adds, in the form of horrible recent violence against Jews in Pittsburgh and black people in Louisville — an ironically common occurrence in this “law and order” administration, Khalil Bendib notes.

The vote couldn’t be higher stakes, not just for the country but for individual voters. Keith Sellars shares this week what it’s like to be criminally prosecuted for trying to vote. (And don’t miss Robert P. Alvarez’s piece from last week on the states working hardest to keep people away from the polls.)

Also this week, I reflect on why it matters to you — wherever you live — that D.C. residents don’t have a vote in Congress. Jasmine Aguilera reports on how border communities will be hurt by the administration’s fear-mongering over a migrant caravan. And Jim Hightower holds up some inspiring initiatives on the ballot across many states this year. (Add to those a measure for universal home care in Maine and numerous marijuana legalization initiatives we reported on last week.)

Finally, for all the fake boogeymen out there, there’s also some really scary stuff. Yemen-based journalist Alex Potter shares her outrage at the U.S. companies profiting from atrocities there. And Olivia Alperstein explains a dire new climate report from the UN, which says we have just 12 years to save our planet from irreversible climate change. (You’d think that would be a bigger election issue!)

New This Week…

Trump Returns to an Old Formula: Lies and Hatred | Jessicah Pierre
The president is putting up a dirty fight to maintain the Republican majority in Congress.

The White House Desperately Wants This Election to Be ‘Us’ vs. ‘Them’ | Jill Richardson
As the midterms approach, the administration is ratcheting up its attacks on anyone who isn’t a straight, white, native-born Christian.

I Was Threatened With Two Years in Prison for Voting | Keith Sellars
Are politicians afraid of poor and working people like me actually having a say in how we run things?

Don’t Sacrifice Border Communities for Political Gain | Jasmine Aguilera
Trump’s threats to shut down the southern border would hurt the interconnected communities along it.

These Ballot Measures Could Bring More Democracy to Your State | Jim Hightower
Corporate elites are so afraid of democracy that they’re actually trying to outlaw it.

D.C. Residents Don’t Have a Vote. That Makes a Big Difference Wherever You Live. | Peter Certo
Our government would look a lot different if the 4.5 million Americans in non-voting territories like D.C. and Puerto Rico had a voice.

We’re Killing Thousands of People to Enrich a Few Corporations | Alex Potter
I’ve lived in Yemen. The lives of its people are worth more than any military contract.

We Only Have 12 Years to Save — Or Lose — Our Only Home | Olivia Alperstein
Consider this your all-hands-on-deck, siren-blaring warning that we need to act now or forever hold our peace.

Hate Crimes, Mass Shootings: Where’s the ‘Law and Order’? | Khalil Bendib
There sure are a lot of hate crimes under this “law and order” administration.

In Case You Missed It…

Being Trans in America Was Already Scary. Now It’s Terrifying. | Robin Carver
A new federal order wouldn’t just deny civil rights protections to trans people. It would deny we exist altogether.

Journalists Say Trump’s Caravan Claims Are ‘Evidence Free.’ It’s Worse Than That. | Domenica Ghanem
Reporters know the president is telling racist lies to rile up his base. Why won’t they just say that?

Even as Voter Registration Soars, Voter Suppression Lives On | Robert P. Alvarez
Is your state working to increase accessibility to the ballot box, or to disenfranchise its citizens?

Any Senior Who Needs Home Care Should Get It | Sarah Anderson
Caring for loved ones with dementia is hard enough. Families shouldn’t have to bear a financial crisis on top of that.

More Americans Than Ever Want Marijuana Legalized. Lawmakers Should Listen. | Paul Armentano
Nearly two-thirds of Americans want cannabis to be legal — but marijuana arrests are going up, not down.

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Peter Certo

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

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