A Look Ahead to 2019 – What’s on the Political Horizon

Reggie Fullwood
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Reggie Fullwood 

by Reggie Fullwood

Annually, I do a “Year that was” type of article that looks back at all of the major events that shaped the year. While that is always fun – this year I decided to do something different.

Instead of talking about the events of 2018, let’s talk about some of the major issues on the horizon for 2019.

First things first – this federal government shut down is totally ridiculous. We have a president who, rather than leading the nation’s public workforce, consistently chooses to disparage it. In fact, this week the guy gets on Twitter and says, ““Do the Dems realize that most of the people not getting paid are Democrats?”

How ridiculous is that? Once again, Trump is shows us that he really doesn’t care about common people and the working class. Come on 2020 elections. My prediction is that by the second week in January the shut down will be over.

It’s funny how we spent all of 2017 obsessing over the 2016 Presidential election, and the Russians and the Russians, and the Russians.

Guess what? In 2019, we will still be talking about the same issues. It’s impossible to discuss the upcoming year without wondering or even speculating about the Special Counsel investigation into the President and “All of his men.”

The reality is that the federal investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election that has consumed the first two years of Trump’s term in office will not be over soon. Most legal experts are saying that we should look for more major indictments in early 2019. Some are saying that members of Trump’s family maybe targets, and the President himself maybe subpoenaed by Mueller.

Speaking of the President, several Democrats will be launching campaigns in 2019 for the White House. While Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders are popular choices, a young first term U.S. Senator is getting a lot of attention.

Democratic Sen. Kamala Harris of California announced over the holidays that she will make a decision about whether she will launch a presidential bid in 2020 by the end of this year. Harris has some Obama-like qualities, and could become the first African American female to win the Democratic Party nomination for President. Can she beat Donald Trump – ummmm… Hell Yes.

Also in 2018, the first Muslim and Native American women were elected to Congress and will take office in January. This is major in the make up of the current Congress, which is predominately white and male.

On the local Jacksonville front, all 19 City Council seats, Constitutional offices and the Mayor’s seat will be on the spring ballot. With the first election scheduled for March 19, 2019 some of the seats are crowded with candidates like City Council District 10, which has ten candidate vying to replace Reggie Brown.

Speculations have also been swirling around the Mayor’s race. Some have said that At-Large Group 1 City Councilwoman Anna Lopez Brosche will run against Mayor Curry, but with less than three months before the primary election is simply not enough time to mount a strong campaign against a well funded incumbent.

Crime will continue to be a major focus for city leaders in 2019.

For fans of the Jacksonville Jaguars, 2019 has to be a better year than the 2018 season. After an extremely disappointing season, the team has to get better and has to figure out how to get a more consistent quarterback.

Hopefully 2019 won’t be another year where “Living While Black” is as big of an issue as it was in 2018. Every week in this country all you need to do is casually peruse the news to see situation after situation of: “driving while black,” “delivering while black,” “walking down the street while black” or even “cutting grass while black,” to see that it is still extremely difficult to avoid racism in America.

This upcoming year has to be better for race relations in America – at least that’s my hope. Country is facing a weird dichotomy – the election of the first Black President moved us light years ahead in some ways, but also caused the rise or resurgence of hate groups and discrimination.

While I am focusing on 2019, it’s important to note that a city in Georgia became the first to have its criminal justice system led entirely by black women. How cool is that?

And while we are talking about the criminal justice system, with the passage of Amendment 4, the felon voting rights amendment will technically takes effect on January 8, 2019 according to the state constitution. So does that mean that eligible felons can go and start registering to vote at their county election’s office on that day?

There is still some confusion, but hopefully the Florida Dept. of State will provide some clear guidelines over the next few weeks. If not, the legislature may have to step in and force the issue.

These are just a few of the issues that will be significant in 2019. Stay tuned to the Free Press for more local, state and national news in 2019.
Signing off from the Jacksonville Free Press on Edgewood Avenue,
Reggie Fullwood

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