Win McNamee/Getty Images

The Kavanaugh hearings might have mobilized the left, but they've mobilized the right as well.

According to a new poll from NPR, PBS NewsHour, and the Marist Institute for Public Opinion, as many Republicans as Democrats now say the coming November election is "very important." That's a shift from before the Kavanaugh hearings, when Republicans were less than concerned about the election than Democrats by 10 points. According to Lee Miringoff, director of Marist, "The result of hearings, at least in the short run, is the Republican base was awakened." Donations to the party have surged as well.

Support The Stranger

The results of this poll are lightly terrifying. They are also, if you spend any time around conservative people or absorbing conservative media, entirely predictable. Of course, most liberals don't have conservative friends (and vice versa) and would never turn on Fox News—for good reason. It probably brainwashed your parents. Tucker Carlson's perplexed expression is enough to give you a migraine. But, as I've argued before, when we only consume media produced by our tribe, we don't understand what the other side believes. And right now, conservatives believe that Kavanaugh is getting screwed. The don't believe he attempted to assault Christine Blasey Ford, and they certainly don't believe the allegations of gang rape, especially after the woman who made them, Julie Swetnick, contradicted details of her own story on NBC.

Democrats are already at a major disadvantage in congressional elections thanks to gerrymandering and re-districting all over the U.S. There are more Democrats than there are Republicans, and yet, the left continues to lose. The worst thing possible for the coming election is for the GOP base to get motivated, and these Supreme Court hearings are doing exactly that. I'm not saying the Dems should have ignored Ford's allegations (they should not have), but I hope those of us on the left are actually prepared to show up and vote this time around, as opposed to 2016.

Trump's tariffs might not inspire the base to go to the polls, but Kavanugh could. Democrats: Take note.