Democrats Will Face Tough Times in 2022

Photoshopped image of Joe Biden “controlling” America.

On November 2, 2021, shockwaves were sent through the political world. In a major upset, Republican gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin cinched the governorship in Virginia. Running on a platform of easing COVID-19 restrictions, giving parents more control over their children’s education and shrinking the size of the state government, Youngkin managed to win a state that President Biden easily won only a year prior in a state that has trended Democratic in recent years. The results in Virginia serve as a microcosm of national politics and should be extremely worrying to the Democratic Party.

If the trend of Virginia continues into the 2022 midterm elections, the Democratic party can expect nothing short of a failure. As the increase in support of Republicans in Virginia stood at 6.02%, it is reasonable to expect Democrats to lose at least 24 seats in the House of Representatives and five seats in the Senate. This would translate to the best electoral results for Republicans in the last half-decade in the House and the best result in the Senate in the past two decades. This trend exists for many reasons, but can be explained in three broad categories. These are, in descending order of importance, economic mismanagement, the Biden Administration’s unpopularity and historical trends.

Starting from the last point, the question regarding Democrat’s performance in the midterm elections should not be “will the Democrats lose control of Congress” but rather: “how badly will Democrats lose control?” Historically, the President’s party never does well in the midterm elections. The opposing party has either won the House or expanded their majorities in every midterm election since 1980, save for 1998 and 2002. Given that the Democratic party has a slim majority of nine seats in the House and an even split in the Senate, it will be no surprise that the party will lose control of both chambers of Congress.

Another reason that Democrats will lose control of Congress is President Biden’s deep unpopularity during recent days. Over the past 100 days, President Biden’s net approval rating has remained consistently negative, with the President’s approval rating continually dropping. Biden’s approval rating is lower than 12 out of the past 13 presidents. However, it is not merely the president who is plagued by negative ratings. Vice President Harris has a net favorable rating of -13. This type of accelerating negativity facing the current administration will drag down the Democrats.

Despite the rest of these issues, the biggest reason why Democrats will lose Congress is gross economic mismanagement. Repeatedly, job reports have come back underwhelming, signaling stagnant growth in the economy. Consumer confidence has dropped, as Americans are increasingly worried about job prospects and income. The inflation rate is the highest it has been in the past 40 years, wiping out Americans’ savings and pushing more toward poverty. At the end of the day, the economy will always be the top issue for people. Other issues may be at the forefront of your mind currently, but everyone pays attention when it is suddenly harder to fill up your car or afford necessities.

If the results of Virginia indicate anything, it is that Americans are tired of the Democratic Party. For far too long we have watched the Democrats push unnecessary spending bills worth trillions of dollars and then increase our taxes to pay for their economic mismanagement. Letting the citizens take the burden is no way to run a country, and American citizens realize that. The Democratic Party has fixated itself on deeply unpopular social issues to which Americans are ambivalent. All of this spells a recipe of disaster for the party. It is time for the party to turn back to the needs of everyday Americans. Democrats will be voted out of Congress, and rightfully so.

-Ethan Bauck ’22

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