Everything an Aussie Needs to Know About the US Midterms

On the night of the United States’ midterms election, there was a lunar eclipse and a blood moon. Some Democrats might’ve been superstitious about this, wondering if it was an omen of bad things to come. 

These midterms are important, as they’ll determine who’s in Congress, which is made up of the House of Representatives and the Senate. The House of Representatives makes and passes federal laws. The Senate can make declarations of war, impeach politicians, and block legislation from happening. 

Because of the power that Congress wields, both the Democrats and the Republicans want to hold a majority. However, as previously alluded to, some Democrats might be nervous about this election’s outcome. 

At the moment, the Democrats only hold the House and the Senate by very slim margins. Current polling has indicated that the Republicans have a strong chance of taking the House. Furthermore, they’re also in with a chance to take the Senate.

“Republicans are peaking at the right time,” said Brendan Buck, a former Republican aide. “Democrats did a good job defying political gravity for a long time, but it’s finally catching up to them. It feels like a healthy Republican majority in the House, and, if I were a betting man, I would guess that Republicans pick up the one Senate seat that they need.”

This sentiment was backed up by Planet America’s host John Barron.

History suggests the Democrats are in real danger of losing their majorities in both the house and senate,” said Barron. In the 19 midterm elections since World War II, the president’s party has improved its share of the House vote just once, and picked up seats just twice.

In the aftermath of 9/11 and the ousting of the Taliban from Afghanistan, George W Bush enjoyed a 63 per cent approval rating and his Republican party picked up six House seats. Bill Clinton’s approval was three points higher in 1998, and the Democrats netted five seats. But they were the exception.

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Joe Biden’s Midterms Address

This precarious situation has caused the President of the United States, Joe Biden, to call on American people to not vote for the Republican party. Naturally, he instead wants them to vote Democrat. On November 2, Biden did this by mentioning the fact that many Republicans still deny the reality that they lost the 2020 election.

“It’s estimated that there are more than 300 election deniers on the ballot all across America this year. We can’t ignore the impact this is having on our country. It’s damaging, it’s corrosive, and it’s destructive,” said Biden. 

“This is no ordinary year. So I ask you to think long and hard about the moment we’re in. In a typical year, we’re often not faced with questions of whether the vote we cast will preserve democracy or put us at risk. But this year, we are.”

By mentioning the fact that 300 candidates deny the results of the 2020 election, Biden is making a compelling argument. This is because individuals who deny the results of a legitimate election might also ignore the will of their constituents in other circumstances. 

A bit later, Biden said, “I hope you’ll ask a simple question of each candidate you might vote for: Will that person accept the legitimate will of the American people and the people voting in his district or her district? Will that person accept the outcome of the election, win or lose?”

What Will Happen If the Republicans Win?

If the Republicans score either the House or the Senate, they’ll be able to make passing Democratic-proposed laws much more difficult. They could also control investigatory committees and make it much trickier for Biden to make any new appointments to the US Supreme Court. To sum it up, the Democrats would get tied up in some gnarly political knots.

Do Americans Go to the Polls for the Midterms?

Yup, Americans head to the polls during the midterms, just like any other election. But that being said, they can also mail in their ballots or go to an early voting centre. For this midterms, over 42 million Americans chose one of these two options

When Will We Know the Results?

Due to the fact that the Pennsylvania and Georgia Senate races are predicted to be close, it could be days before the midterm results will be finalised. We’ll keep you posted when this happens.

What’s the Exit Polling Data Saying?

Exit polling has indicated that the voters in this election might have been statistically older than those who voted in the 2018 midterms. In 2018, around 13% of voters were under 30. In 2022, this figure dropped to be around 10%.

Meanwhile, in 2018, around 26% of voters were 65 or older. In 2022, this number bumped up to be around 33%.

It’s worth noting that in America, voting isn’t compulsory. 

The key issues for voters in this election were inflation and abortion. Around 33% of the interviewed voters said that inflation was the main issue that they voted on. On the other hand, 27% of folks said abortion rights were their primary concern. Other voters were divided between believing that gun laws, crime rates, and immigration policies were the most important issues of said midterms. 

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