Midterm elections are coming up, and it’s anyone’s guess who will control the Senate.

Midterm elections are coming up: Vice President Joe Biden expressed his confidence that Democrats “are going to win this time,” meaning that they would gain a member in the Senate and continue to govern the House of Representatives.

News Regarding the Approaching Midterm Elections

Democrats and Republicans have a few days to convince voters who should govern Congress. In dozens of tight congressional races, both parties are spending millions on ads and mailers. Biden, Obama, and Trump campaigned from Florida through Iowa to Pennsylvania.

Sabato’s Crystal Ball predicts Georgia and Nevada will decide Senate control. The newsletter predicts remaining Senate races will favor Democrats or Republicans, but ratings might change. 218 House seats are secure, likely, or leaning Republican, while 195 are for Democrats. 22 elections are close.

Kyle Kondik, managing editor of Sabato’s Crystal Ball at UVA’s Center for Politics, anticipates Republicans to regain the House. Senator Kondik is unsure. “Given the conditions, you may expect the Republicans to win, but I don’t. Georgia’s runoff may postpone Senate control until December. Real Clear Politics gives Herschel Walker a 1.6-point advantage over Sen. Raphael Warnock.

Unperfect polls exist. Warnock is 3 points ahead in one NYT/Siena poll, while Walker is 1 point ahead in another. More than a million Georgians voted early, 70% more than in 2018. Monday, 26 million Americans had voted early, according to the US Elections Project.

Nevada’s battle between Democratic Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto and Republican Adam Laxalt could be pivotal and indicative of the national mood. Nevada was tied in a late-October NYT/Siena survey. Each candidate got 47%; 4% were unsure.

The Dismal Levels of Support for Biden

In House races, Republicans are projected to capture the most seats, Kondik added. Kondik said Biden’s 40% Gallup rating is an important factor for Democrats this election season, not policy issues. Abortion, inflation, violence, and immigration dominated this election.

Kondik said Biden’s poor approval rating is the biggest challenge for Democrats. Many Democrats poll higher than Biden, allowing them to run ahead of the president, though that might alter by Election Day. This might help Republicans win Senate seats in Arizona, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and other Democrat-leaning states.

There are tight races even in Democratic-leaning states and districts. Oregon Republicans may hold several House seats after 26 years. Three of six House races are competitive after redistricting.

Midterm elections are coming up
Midterm elections are coming up

The GOP isn’t targeting the new Democratic-leaning seat. In May, Jamie McCleod-Skinner beat Kurt Schrader. Sabato’s Crystal Ball says the election favors Republicans, and the Oregon Capital Chronicle agrees.

The Obama and Trump

Democrats want Obama to help with last-minute campaigning. Obama recently campaigned in Georgia, Michigan, and Wisconsin. He’ll also campaign in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia on Saturday for John Fetterman and Mehmet Oz.

Jill Biden and Kamala Harris are touring key states. Biden visited Florida on Tuesday to address Social Security, Medicare, and drug prices and New Mexico on Thursday to promote student debt forgiveness. Obama will visit Philadelphia on Saturday.

Trump campaigns with Chuck Grassley and Kim Reynolds. Florida Sen. Rick Scott is visiting New Hampshire, where Democrat Maggie Hassan faces GOP challenger Don Bolduc.

A GOP House

Chamber Republicans would modify how bills are submitted and how the house runs even if they lose the Senate. GOP leaders may remove metal detectors from Jan. 6 pro-Trump rioting.

Proxy voting allows House members to vote remotely through another member. Republicans have accused Democrats of maintaining the COVID-19 pandemic clause. Several news media have mentioned that COVID-19 proxy voters have used it to attend events or campaigns.

In September, Republican House leaders released their Commitment to America. It says the GOP would cut spending, legalize abortion, and change Social Security and Medicare. House Republicans plan to leverage the debt ceiling and government budget deadlines to negotiate spending cuts if they win the midterms.

Senate Republicans haven’t specified what they’d do if they won. Democrats said they’ll try to codify Roe v. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court judgment that legalized abortion.

Democrats will try to pass parts of their climate change, health care, and tax package that were cut in the Senate to win moderate senators’ backing.

Different Opinions

With Biden in the White House and Republicans in at least one chamber of Congress, divided government is more plausible. The separation would require both parties to work together on fundamental tasks, but not on larger measures like the bipartisan infrastructure law or the Chips Act.

Tevi Troy, senior fellow of the Presidential Leadership Initiative at the Bipartisan Policy Center and former deputy HHS secretary in the Bush administration, warned last week that losing the Senate “would have terrible repercussions for Biden’s ability to bring individuals into office.”

“If Biden appoints someone for his administration, he gets them through,” Troy remarked. “Not if you have a Republican Senate and 52 or 53 votes,” Troy said probes against the Biden administration and congressional oversight hearings would be vital if Republicans win the House, but he warned GOP leaders not to make that their main emphasis.

“If McCarthy is smart—and he claims he’s learned from 2010—he’ll see these probes as a pressure valve,” Troy added, referring to House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy.

“If McCarthy’s wise, it can’t be the incoming Congress’s main focus,” he said. Nobody votes for Republicans to investigate. Americans want policy victories and successes. I think Congress does oversight. But I think supervision alone will fail.”

Timeline of Events Through Midterms

History shows that the president’s party loses seats and frequently controls Congress in the first midterm election. In 1994, Democrats lost 54 House seats, ending a majority they’d enjoyed since 1955. Democrats lost nine Senate seats, becoming the minority party for the first time since 1987.

In 2002, George W. Bush’s first midterms, Republicans gained eight House seats. The GOP gained 1 Senate seat. In 2010, Obama’s first midterm, Democrats lost 64 House seats. Democrats went from 57 seats with two independents to 51 seats with two independents.

In Trump’s first midterm, Republicans lost 42 House seats. According to House and Senate statistics, Republicans won two Senate seats that year.

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