GOP Poised for Congressional Gains
For more than 100 years, political history has revealed without deviation that when a Democrat wins the presidency in a presidential year, that in the following midterm congressional elections two years later, Republicans make gains in the U.S. House of Representatives. That truism has become more pronounced in the last few decades.
This history will be repeated in the upcoming Nov. 8 general election. Every indication and polling suggests that the GOP gains in this year’s general election will be significant.
In talking with people in the know in Washington, it appears to be a foregone conclusion that there will be major Republican gains in Congress. This prognosis is not only anticipated by Republican strategists but is even being acknowledged by Democrats on the Hill and throughout the nation. Moreover, even the liberal mainstream media is cognizant of this GOP sweep on the horizon.
Currently, the Democrats have a very slim, 221 to 214 majority in the U.S. House. For some reason, probably because the tea leaves indicate a GOP takeover of the House, there is an inordinate number of Democratic congressmen retiring this year. This makes the pick-ups for the GOP more sustainable. Incumbency and seniority are omnipotent in Congress. Therefore, the likelihood of the GOP taking over the majority is enhanced by these retiring Democrats.
The conservative estimate by most experts is that there will be a 30 to 36 seat swing to the Republicans in November. If that estimate is accurate, that would change the House from a 221 to 214 current Democratic majority to a Republican majority of 250 to 185.
This solid Republican majority would change the philosophical tilt in the national arena. In today’s polarized, toxic, partisan environment, both parties’ members of Congress vote lockstep along party lines. You may as well have a robot voting their congressional voting machines. It would be more efficient and economical. You would not have to have millions for congressional staffs or offices, which costs millions per congressman, and their only duties anyway were to work to ensure the congressman’s reelection every two years.
The early prognostication of a 30 to 36 seat pickup in Congress by Republicans has been tempered somewhat with the Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade. This issue is not a winner for the GOP. Most Independent, a good many Republican and almost all Democratic female voters are pro-choice. The striking illustration of this pro-choice leaning was revealed earlier this year when voters in ruby red Republican Kansas voted 60-40 against outlawing abortion in their state. This issue, along with the Democratic socialist bailout money, may have tempered the anticipated GOP congressional landslide.
However, Democratic President Joe Biden’s approval ratings are abysmal. He is at historically low polling approvals, especially among all important Independent voters. The primary reason for Biden’s demise and the obvious elephant in the room is the out-of-control economic inflation rate on consumer spending in the country. It is approaching a 10% level. This is devastating politically for Biden and the Democrats. Americans vote their pocketbook, especially in congressional elections.
Another detriment to Democrats is Biden’s first-year decision to completely disregard immigration laws and create carte blanche open southern borders for every undocumented immigrant to invade the country and offer them all of the welfare and government privileges and services of state tax dollars. This open door infringement does not sit well with Republicans or Independents, and probably not with some minority Democrats.
The liberal social agenda of House Democrats regarding LGBTQ issues appears over the top to most mainstream Christian Americans. If truth were known, even Eastern religions are not comfortable with these overt favorable treatment toward social mores. My observations of Southern African American people are that they are very Christian-oriented and are Bible-reading and do not adhere to this agenda either.
This congruence of economic, social and deficit spending is dovetailing into a devastating mid-term congressional wipeout for Democrats. This tsunami will probably spill over into the U.S. Senate, also.
The Senate is 50 Democrats and 50 Republicans, dead even. Republicans could win a majority in the upper chamber. It will be close. The key senate battles will be in Arizona, Pennsylvania, Ohio and our neighboring state of Georgia.
We will see in less than five weeks.
Steve Flowers is Alabama’s leading political columnist. His weekly column is published in more than 60 Alabama newspapers. He served 16 years in the state legislature. Steve may be reached at: www.steveflowers.us.