Republicans expected a red wave – some, even a red tsunami – in the mid-term election. However, as the eighth election progressed, it became clear that the GOP had overlooked what was supposed to be an easy mid-term win, and experts said Tuesday’s results suggested that congress’ waves were a thing of the past.
Historically, the presidential party almost always has bad mid-term elections. During the second term of President Barack Obama, the Republicans recorded the largest gain in the Senate in more than three decades and won the largest majority in the House in more than 85 years during the 2014 mid-term term. In mid-2018, President Donald Trump experienced a “blue wave” that saw Democrats reclaim the House, put in a so-called progressive team, and won a net seven seats in the governorate elections.
The forecast for President Joe Biden was no different. By decision of the US Supreme Court to overthrow power Roe v WadeConcerns about inflation and the health of the economy, Republicans were poised to conduct polls predicting favorable outcomes in several key battlefield states. But as the votes were compiled and the races announced, it became clear that the GOP would not have the wide margins it was prepared for.
Political scientist Steven Schier said that while wave elections were commonplace in the middle of the term, the waves are no longer occurring because “voters are almost in their trenches and shooting each other from established and comfortable positions.”
“We have a very divided country, we had a very divided presidential election [in 2020]. We now had a strictly split semester, “said Schier.” This could be the new normal. “
As of Wednesday afternoon, another Congress remains at stake, with both houses still pending. While the Georgia state senate is headed for the second round, both sides are eagerly awaiting the results in Nevada and Arizona. While they have the upper hand, the Republicans still have few mandates to regain the House.
While Republicans “should have been striving for an easy victory,” this year’s results saw them “scratch their heads and point their fingers,” said Brandon Rottinghaus of the University of Houston.
Rottinghaus and Audrey Haynes, professor of political science at the University of Georgia, said Newsweek that what ultimately hurt the republican government was a group of lower-ranking candidates who were unable to win voters.
Nationwide, Trump-backed candidates appeared in the popular vote after winning the primary. The former president spent most of the campaign cycle advertising the major victories of his supporters as he prepared to take credit for the red coup in November.
But the results showed that concerns voiced by the Republican establishment like Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell about candidates from across the state seemed to materialize when candidates like Mehmet Oz and Doug Mastriano lost in Pennsylvania.
At the same time, Democrats noticed an increase thanks to Dobbs decisions and fear of MAGA’s extreme policies, Haynes said. Even with the unpopular president in the White House, voters appeared to be strongly motivated by the threats to the right to ab*rtion and democracy were carried by the Democrats, defying the Republican assumption that inflation and fears of recession were enough for voters to share their tickets.
Schier said the problem for the Republicans was that they felt the only thing they had to pay attention to was a bad economy.
“What they failed to provide was a promising alternative to this bad economy – a way for the future that many voters can identify, use and vote for,” he said. “They felt the bad news was enough, and it wasn’t.”
Schier also said Republican fundraising strategies were “too impressive” and “missed” in neighborhoods that didn’t need money as much as others. Newsweek that the GOP “did not understand how precarious their situation was and therefore grossly misallocated their money.”
More importantly, Schier pointed out that Biden was not as unpopular as the Republicans believed him to be. The results of the National Election Pool poll found that while a third of voters said their election to Congress was to oppose Biden, 47 percent said the president was not a factor.
Schier said one of the reasons Biden did not play such an important role in the middle of his term was because Trump made them elections rather than a referendum on his democratic rival.
“Biden is still not popular, but is less unpopular than many Republicans locally and nationally,” said Rottinghaus. “The voters chose to choose the devil they knew over the one they did not know.”
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