Midterm elections in the USA: Democrats can breathe easy

The midterms confirm the deep divisions in the USA. But President Joe Biden is emerging stronger, while Donald Trump is weakened.

A man with a shirt covered in photos of Donald Trump

Not so enthusiastic: fashionably over-motivated Trump supporter on election night Photo: Ross D. Franklin/ap

One thing is certain: one Trump avalanche did not roll over the US. The Republicans made gains on Tuesday. But compared to the successes of opposition parties in previous midterm elections, these successes seem small. And they fall well short of Republican expectations.

Up to a complete result of midterm elections in the US days, possibly even weeks – if another runoff election should be necessary in Georgia – could pass. But at least a few things became clear on election night that will determine US politics in the years to come.

Donald Trump emerges weakened from the elections. He has been more involved in the past campaign than any ex-president before him has done in midterm elections. He’s flown all over the country to promote his favorites and – most importantly – his own ambitions for a new run for the White House in 2024. But of the radical candidates he has backed, some have failed miserably. And in many places, his constituents of 2016 and 2020 have failed him.

The damper on Trump’s personal ambitions is of course not synonymous with the end of his triumphal march through the Republican Party and the country’s institutions. Because many of his candidates made it through the election. Their presence at all elected levels is a guarantee that Trump-style confrontations will increase in the US Congress in the future and that the dangers to democracy in the US, especially at the state level, are by no means averted. Apart from that is also from Ron DeSantis, the re-elected Governor of Florida and Trump’s currently most promising Republican competitor for 2024, only a different personal style, but no fundamentally different policy to be expected.

The party left also emerged strengthened from the midterm elections

The Democrats can breathe a sigh of relief because their losses have turned out to be smaller than feared. They could keep MPs as well as governors who seemed at risk. And they could – with the hotly contested election victory of John Fetterman in Pennsylvania – Gain a seat in the Senate. But they have lost some central figures – including those who were particularly involved in the Clarification of the storming of the Capitol were involved. With fewer representatives, Democrats will have an even harder time pushing their reforms through Congress. For Democrats, these midterms also bring certainty that they have lost two states that were recently swing states. Both Florida and Ohio voted Republican by large majorities.

Nevertheless, President Joe Biden emerges stronger from the midterm elections. Centrists in his party see the relatively minor losses suffered by the Democrats as confirmation of his policies. They are now calling on him to run for the White House again in 2024.

The party left also emerged strengthened from the midterm elections. They conquered several additional constituencies. They will be louder in the future House of Representatives.

The Midterms confirm the deep divisions in the US around the only two parties that determine its politics. But voters across party lines agreed on one point on Tuesday: They want to uphold the right to abortion. In at least four states that have held referendums on this right, voters appear to have voted in favor.

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