Americans are voting to choose representatives in Congress; an election that appears to have become a referendum for Donald Trump, two years after he entered the White House. About 20 million Italian-Americans are called to the polls…
US citizens are going to the polls to vote for their representatives in Congress for the midterm elections. These Midterms seem to be more of a referendum on Donald Trump’s presidency, in a country with a current deep political divide. Even Google is encouraging people with a ‘Go Vote’ message on its homepage.
Two years ago, after the night of 8 November 2016, which unexpectedly brought the Republican billionaire to the White House, Democrats and others dreamed of regaining control before the natural deadline of 2020.
The 70-year-old President from New York has campaigned until the last moment: with his “Make America Great Again” slogan continuing. “Security and prosperity are at stake in this election,” said the president wearing the Republican red tie in his last meeting in Missouri, where he was accompanied by his daughter Ivanka.
Voting opened at 6am on the East Coast (12pm in Italy). There are over 400 seats to be voted for in the House of Representatives, a third of those in the Senate, as well as the office of Governor in thirty states including Florida and Alaska. The polls favored the Democrats in the House of Representatives, while the Republicans – again, according to some rumors – may keep the majority of the Senate. Uncertainty, however, remains very high.
The 20 million Italian Americans called to the polls will act as the scales, just as it did two years ago. Almost 7% of the population in the United States has Italian origins, including many notable people, from Fiorello La Guardia, the first Italian-American mayor of New York in the 1930s up to the most current, Nancy Pelosi and Bill De Blasio. In music they have “the voice” Frank Sinatra, the great Dean Martin and the pop stars of our days Madonna and Lady Gaga.
There’s a long list of film celebs: from Frank Capra – the director of the most popular films of the ’30s and’ 40s – to Quentin Tarantino, the director who has “revolutionized” the way of making films in Hollywood, drawing heavily from “spaghetti westerns”; from Martin Scorsese to Francis Ford Coppola, and from Brian De Palma to Michael Cimino – there are many Italian-Americans who have created films that are part of the history of American cinema. Equally long is the list of actors with Italian heritage, starting with Rudy Valentino, the first global sex symbol, Al Pacino (Alfredo James Pacino) and Robert De Niro (honorary citizen of Ferrazzano in the province of Campobasso – country of origin of great-grandparents); Leonardo Di Caprio (fourth generation Italian blood) and Nicolas Cage (actually, Nicolas Coppola, the surname of his father); Danny DeVito, John Travolta and Lou Ferrigno, the Incredible Hulk. Some of these great actors – as repeatedly highlighted by glossy newspapers around the world – even wear GuidoMaggi elevator shoes to increase their height in comfort and style, appropriate to their image – and perhaps to also have another piece of “made in Italy” with them.
The Italian Americans have been and remain a fundamental part of the political, social and intellectual framework of the country that has grown since it was “discovered” by Christopher Columbus. God bless America and Italian Americans!