Analysis: A non-American’s guide to the 2022 US midterms
This is an edited version of a recent post by a non-American voter.
This article originally appeared in the Wall Street Journal on 3-8-20. It has been republished under the new title: Americans in search of America.
As the campaign to elect the next Congress began in two weeks many Americans were looking for a way out of a dismal election year that saw Donald J. Trump win the presidency over the much-maligned Hillary Clinton. Many people thought that the American political system needed an overhaul.
The election was the opportunity, however, to reflect upon who we are and what we value. Not to mention the opportunity to take a look at the ways that our country, and especially its political institutions, have changed over the past decade.
Here are a few of the highlights of the past months.
* The Democrats failed to take control of the United States Congress, but not because Donald Trump lost his Senate seat.
The Democrats lost seats in the House of Representatives, but won an extra Senate seat, giving the party their first Senate majority since 1928. The reason why Democrats lost the majority is the rise of Republican-leaning suburban voters who were not inclined to support Trump. This suburban revolt, which has been brewing for decades, was fueled in large part by the failure of the Democratic Party to articulate a compelling economic message. Many Democrats, including the party’s presidential nominee, saw the Trump candidacy as a referendum on political correctness and felt the party needed to change its message. The Democratic failure was in part due to a failure to understand that political correctness is not the same as progressive change.
* Trump’s victory meant that the Republican Party regained a Senate majority for the first time since 1994.
The Republicans gained seats in the U.S. Senate for the first time in 40 years. The Republican gains were made possible