If you believe a midterm election in a time of relative peace and economic prosperity is the most important in history, or even the most important in your incredibly fortunate lifetime, you’re either oblivious to basic history or you don’t have a single non-partisan synapse firing in your skull. We might ask people to please stop being so melodramatic and conceited, but then, it’s 2018.
“We have had many important elections, but never one so important as that now approaching,” a New York Times editorial claimed during the 1864 presidential race between Abraham Lincoln and George McClellan, which took place during the Civil War. As others have noted, this probably the last time that the words “most,” “important,” “election,” and “lifetime” should have been stuck together.
Yet it’s now become standard for partisans to claim every presidential election is the most important. Since many people view the president as an emperor, with all the false expectations that go along with that perception, perhaps they believe it. That’s one thing. But now we have people whose religious denomination is partisanship, foisting this insufferable cliché on us for House elections that happen every two years in every single district.