Midterm elections are usually dismal. People are (politically) exhausted from the Presidential election cycle two years earlier. Normally, the turn-out favors the party that lost the presidential election, as the losing side seems to be the only ones motivated enough to vote. The size of the loss for the party in power is historically correlated with the disappointment with the president and the president’s party, the state of the economy, as well as occasional scandals or crises.
In the last 17 of 19 midterm elections the party in power lost an average of 27 seats in the House. A president’s party has gained Senate seats in a midterm only six times in the past 60 years: 1962, 1966, 1970, 1982, 2002 and 2018.
Dems hope this year will be different, even though President Biden’s favorable ratings are low and the economy, though showing strong jobs and expansion, is suffering through unusual inflation and high gas prices.
This year, the concerns among voters polled look to be about normal for a mid-term. A new poll from Monmouth University found 82 percent of Americans rated inflation as an extremely or very important issue, followed by crime (72 percent), elections and voting (70 percent), jobs and unemployment (68 percent) and immigration (67 percent).
But the Dems are hoping for an upset primarily concerning one issue – Abortion. They hope women, even moderate Republican women, will show a strong turn-out to punish the Republicans for the Supreme Court’s recent decision to over-turn Roe vs. Wade. A majority of women, regardless of party, see abortion only as a woman’s health choice or at least want to see exceptions for rape, incest and serious medical issues. Issues some states and Republicans have come out against.
In Georgia, early voting is up 85% over the 2018 midterms showing that the Dems are correct about one thing – people are motivated to vote this cycle. Will it favor the Dems, as they hope, or will the economy issues, as usual, take the day and favor the Republicans? We will know after November 8th.
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