The Democratic Party retained its majority, contrary to predictions and the historical regularity that says that in the middle of a president’s first term, his party usually loses congressional elections. The victories in Nevada and Arizona were a foregone conclusion. (…)
On Saturday evening (US time) it turned out that, contrary to predictions, the Democratic Party retained its majority in the Senate. Its success was determined by the victory of incumbent Democratic Senator Catherine Cortez Masto in the state of Nevada over Republican Party (GOP) candidate Adam Laxalt, and earlier in the day the victory of Democratic Senator Mark Kelly, a former astronaut, over Republican challenger Blak Masters. As a result, the Democrats already have 50 seats in the Senate – or, as before, equally half (there are 100 people in the Senate) – but this is enough for them to maintain control, since the decisive vote in such a situation belongs to the vice president, in this case Kamala Harris.
This minimal advantage could still grow after the second round of elections in Georgia, which will take place on December 6, as neither of the two rival candidates in the state: Democrat Raphael Warnock nor Republican Hershel Walker, did not get the required minimum majority of 50 percent of the vote. Warnock, a Baptist Church pastor, won over Walker, a former soccer player, by a difference of 1 percent. If he repeats this result in the second round, Senate seats will be split 51-49 between Democrats and Republicans.
The Democrats’ victory is all the more unexpected because it came against the historical regularity that says that in the middle of an incumbent president’s first term, his party usually loses congressional elections, losing seats to the opposition or even a majority if it has one. The Democrats lost their majority in 1994, when Bill Clinton was president for two years, in 2010, when Barack Obama was in the White House, and the Republicans in 2018, under President Donald Trump. The result in the Senate is therefore also a huge success for Joe Biden. Elections are usually a kind of plebiscite on the incumbent president’s rule, and Biden’s poll ratings hover around 40-42 percent.
One of the OSCE observers responsible for monitoring the election process was MP Agnieszka Pomaska.