This evening’s good news goes far beyond the obvious. (Obvious being, Republicans take a pounding, and cretins like Rick “Man-on-Dog” Santorum join the ranks of the unemployed.) Bernie Sanders became America’s first Socialist Senator in history, beating his Republican opponent by a huge margin. When I heard Sanders speak a few months ago, he noted that his focus on economic justice was key to his appeal to socially conservative, patriotic rural white people. (Unlike many of the Democrats that are picking up seats tonight, Sanders doesn’t do this by becoming a social conservative himself.) It does look like where they were given a chance to do so this year, many people voted for a slightly more humane economic order. Voters in Missouri (74%) and Ohio(65%) have overwhelmingly chosen to raise the state minimum wage to $6.50 and $6.85, respectively. The minimum wage issue was expected to affect other races by turning out the Democratic base in the way that gay marriage may have turned Republicans out to vote in 2004; it’s too soon to say whether that happened. Arizona, Colorado, Nevada and Montana also have minimum wage initiatives on the ballot; the pre-election opinion polls looked good, but stay tuned.