Richard Hudson – Staff writer
Going into the midterm elections on Tuesday, November 6th, I was unsure about what the outcome would be. I heard that a “blue wave” was coming that would change control of the House and the Senate from Republican to Democratic hands. I had also heard that this election was going to be the most important of our lifetime.
I was personally very excited to vote in this election, although that is mostly because I am rather new to voting and this was to be only the second election that I had the chance to legally participate in. Unlike with the 2016 election, my predictions for what would happen actually turned out to be mostly correct.
I fully expected the Democrats to regain control of the House on November 6th—and that was exactly what happened. I do not pretend to be an expert whatsoever when it comes to predicting this sort of thing, but the polls had seemed to suggest for weeks that Democrats would pick up the necessary seats to put themselves back into the majority for the first time since 2011.
When Election Day finally arrived, the polls did not disappoint. A whole bunch of new Democratic candidates were elected to the House. According to The Associated Press, Democrats have 220 seats in the House to the Republicans’ 196, while the winner of the remaining seats is unclear. A number of these new Democratic representatives were elected from the same states that voted for President Trump two years ago.
The Senate turned out to be a different story than the House. Although I predicted Republicans to keep their majority and even expand it, I did not predict how many new seats they would go on to win. The Republicans had a 51 to 49 edge on election night and they would go on to knock off a handful of Democratic senators in Red states.
Claire McCaskill, Heidi Heitkamp and Joe Donnelly all went on to lose re-election in their home states of Missouri, North Dakota and Indiana respectively. It also appears that Florida Governor Rick Scott defeated Democratic Senator, Bill Nelson by the slightest of margins; though a recount is currently under way there. Meanwhile, Senator Ted Cruz barely beat off a challenge from Congressman Beto O’Rourke. On the other hand, Democrats picked up Republican Senator, Dean Heller’s seat in Nevada.
Other races that do not have a clear winner are those in Arizona and Montana. The Democrats had a pretty tough challenge ahead of them in trying to win the Senate this time around, considering polling has never been that good for their party. The one interesting thing to note so far is that every Democratic senator in a Red state who voted against Brett Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court lost. West Virginia senator, Joe Manchin (who voted for Kavanaugh), kept his seat.
There were also a number of governor’s races that took place on voting day. The one that got the most attention was the race in Florida, where it appears that the Republican Party defeated the Democratic Party by a very thin amount. This kind of close race was the case in Georgia as well, with seemingly the same result. Back home in Massachusetts, Governor Charlie Baker crushed his Democrat opponent, Jay Gonzalez, and was re-elected for a 2nd term.
The elections that took place on Tuesday, Nov. 6th were neither a blue wave nor a red wave—it was a mix of both. While Democrats did take back the House and have some luck in the governors’ races, Republicans held the Senate and have seemingly expanded on it. The outcome of these elections raises a lot of questions that will soon be answered in the coming months.
In the meantime, we should hope and pray for more unity in this country. We are all Americans regardless of our favored party and our leaders need to work together to solve our nation’s problems. Disagreement is fine, but that should not prevent things from getting done; the people we vote into office need to remember that. If they do not keep that in mind, then we need to kick them out of office and find somebody who will stop fighting and start working as a team to get things done.
Richard Hudson, a junior, studies Organizational Communications. He is a staff writer for Le Provocateur.