With Wins for De Blasio, Minimum Wage and Tea Party Losses, Voters Signal Rejection of Austerity

Election Day was held Tuesday, deciding state and local races across the country. In Virginia, former Democratic National Committee chair Terry McAuliffe was elected governor, defeating Tea Party-backed Ken Cuccinelli, the state’s attorney general. McAulliffe’s victory was seen as a rebuke of the Tea Party-backed government shutdown that impacted many of the state’s workers. In New Jersey, Republican Gov. Chris Christie easily won re-election, paving the way for a possible presidential run in 2016. New Jersey voters also approved a constitutional amendment to raise the minimum wage by $1, to $8.25 an hour, and add automatic cost-of-living increases each year. Christie vetoed a similar bill last year. Backers of a measure to impose a $15 an hour minimum wage at Seattle’s international airport and surrounding hotels have also declared victory. After campaigning on a vow to tackle inequality, Bill de Blasio won an overwhelming victory to become the first Democrat mayor of New York City in two decades. In another closely watched race, the union-backed Martin Walsh was elected mayor of Boston. “When I look across this country, I’m seeing results that say people are really ready to look at an alternative to austerity,” says John Nichols, political writer for The Nation. “They want something different than just, ‘cut, cut, cut.'” We also discuss the results of several other ballot measures, including victories for legalized marijuana in Maine and Colorado, and the defeat of a GMO-labelling proposal in Washington State.

Please check back later for full transcript.