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Divided We Stand

Divided We Stand
New book about the 2020 election.

Thursday, January 19, 2023

The Midterms Are Over… What’s Next?

 What happened? 

Rep. Kelly Armstrong (R-ND): “This is the weirdest election I’ve ever been a part of.”

The fundamentals looked terrible for Democrats:  One formula predicted that Democrats would lose 44 House seats.  Instead, they lost nine.

In Senate races, Democrats outperformed the polls. Candidates mattered.

Margins of election-night leaders:  election eve polling averages vs. actual:
  • Arizona: Kelly (D) 1.0%  vs. 4.9%
  • Georgia: Walker (R) 0.6% vs.  -0.9%
  • Nevada: Laxalt (R) 2.8% vs. -1.9%
  • New Hampshire: Hassan (D) 1.0% vs. 9.1%
  • Ohio: Vance (R) 7.5 % vs. 6.5%
  • Pennsylvania: Fetterman (D) 0.1% vs. 4.5%
  • Washington: Murray (D) 3.0% vs. 14.9%
  • Wisconsin: Johnson (R) 2.8% vs. 1.0%

The final score:
  • House  222R-212D (1 vacancy that leans D)
  • Senate 51D-49R
Why is this Congress different?
  • In the 20th century, divided government was often very productive.  But Congress was far less polarized and House majorities were usually larger.
  • Republicans have always had internal feuds.  But they never broke into the open this way:

What's next?

Government shutdowns and debt default:  both are bad, default is much, much worse.
Investigations and Oversight (and Dems rejoice)
  • Border security
  • Afghanistan
  • Hunter Biden
  • Presidential documents
Some investigations (e.g., Watergate) have had a major political impact. Most have not (e.g., Fast and Furious).

  • The state of the economy
  • Foreign crises
  • Disasters TBA

Mister T sums it up: