- - Friday, November 4, 2022

It’s finally here. The most important election of our lifetimes, since the last most important election of our lifetimes, which happened to be the last election. We’ve talked so much about the names, the issues and the full-contact politics. The races have become part sport, part sitcom and part reality TV series that would make even the Kardashians envious.

For all the sound, fury and farce, the script has been quite familiar. Democrats focused their time and money scaring voters about abortion, heralding their latest welfare schemes and the impending planetary doom that more government will somehow prevent. Let’s not forget the new drive to allow children to carve up their bodies and change their gender. At least that was new.

Republicans have predictably hung their fortunes on the economy, crime, the border and pushing back against the culture war that threatens basic societal norms and fundamental rights.

Campaigns are always flush with promises, but whether those elected have the courage to move the country in a positive direction is the leap of faith we make every time we go into the voting booth. It’s a faith that often is more of a transference of responsibility.

In this time of democratized information, for all our perceived individual power, too many Americans still cling to the notion that a party, politician or program will cure the ills of society.

Only Americans can save and strengthen America.

One of the reasons many of our chronic problems go unsolved or that the far left has made progress toward upending America’s formula for greatness is that we all too often leave the change we seek to others. No president, member of Congress or senator can truly restore the soul of the nation. Sure, those with a pulpit can deliver a moving sermon, but only the congregants of American freedom can turn good words into positive action.

Politicians, Big Government, the media and Big Tech don’t do that. People do.

The failures of the welfare state and public education system should serve as a reminder that our experimentation with top-down systems has resulted in the corrosion of our society. The national sin of abortion on demand in the name of freedom has hung like a pall over the country for nearly five decades.

Fortunately, in that very issue and the awakening of parents to the danger of leaving education to bureaucrats and union bosses, we are seeing Americans restore America.

Citizen action on abortion is very personal. As much as Democrats and the media tried to stir fear and panic over the Dobbs decision, Americans and their governments in most places are settling into a nuanced position over the issue with a focus on more limited access, but some access nonetheless. On education, the pandemic, radical indoctrination, and rising costs for lower returns are resulting in parents engaging in schools in a way they haven’t in decades.

These are positive steps for the nation that disprove President Biden’s divisive and nonsensical admonitions over extremism threatening democracy. On Tuesday, we will see clearly that our imperfect republic is healthy, not because the pendulum may swing back toward a more conservative government, but for all the rants about the results, the people will again speak.

Before we go patting ourselves on the back, though, remember that voting is only the beginning of citizenship. America is big, powerful, complex and beautiful. It can’t be left to the politicians. Members of Congress have very limited individual power by design. America certainly can’t be left to the deep state.

Frankly, we often set our expectations far too high for our national leaders. One of the reasons why they often lack the courage to do the right thing or push back against damaging special interests is that they are often right to believe we’re not paying attention.

Manage your expectations. Tuesday is but one step in a process in which your enthusiastic participation is critical.

America is truly preserved only by our working together to support one another and forging solutions to challenges they see every day from the ground up. It is strengthened by keeping the perspective that the violence and hate we are force-fed by our media do not represent who we truly are.

America is preserved by people giving of themselves and taking pride in their families, neighborhoods and towns. It is at its best not just when one political party over another holds the reins of power, but when it follows the roadmap our Founders laid out for us. One grounded in being a nation created and guided by Providence and existing to serve His will for our advancement.

• Tom Basile is the host of “America Right Now” on Newsmax TV, an author and a former Bush administration official.

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