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Sometimes it seemed that only two issues mattered in the midterm election campaigns just ended. No, I’m not talking about Obamacare, or the inequality gap, or the country’s sagging infrastructure, or education, or energy policy. I mean two issues that truly threaten the wellbeing of citizens from Kansas, Colorado and Iowa to New Hampshire and North Carolina. In those states and others, both were debated heatedly by candidates for the Senate and House, sometimes almost to the exclusion of anything else.
You know what I’m talking about—two issues on the lips of politicians nationwide, at the top of the news 24/7 and constantly trending on social media: ISIS and Ebola. Think of them as the two horsemen of the present American apocalypse.
And think of this otherwise drab midterm campaign as the escalation election. Republican candidates will arrive in Washington having beaten the war and disease drums particularly energetically, and they’re not likely to stop.
In 2015, you’re going to hear far more about protecting Americans from everything that endangers them least, and especially about the need for a pusillanimous president (or so he was labeled by a range of Republicans this campaign season) to buckle down, up the ante and crush the Islamic State, that extreme Islamist mini-oil regime in the middle of an increasingly fragmented, chaotic Middle East.