A referendum for Donald Trump

The midterm elections are an inevitable political rendezvous. They can radically influence American politics and upset the mandate of a US President.

They usually have a big stake, but these midterms elections are a particularly high bet on the future since they are considered as a referendum on Donald Trump. Every two years, they punctuate American domestic politics and are like a mid-term evaluation for the President.

Indeed, the outcome of the elections could be significant for the legislative agendas on healthcare, tax plans and immigration reform, which were Mr Trump’s major issues.

If the Democrats win the control of Congress, they will be able to block the Republican agendas and the president’s Supreme Court nominees from being confirmed.

To win a House majority, the Democrats have to gain 24 seats, which seems quite feasible. However, the path to take control of the Senate seems narrower (fifty-one seats are needed out of one hundred). Since 1910, the party represented at the White House has almost always lost seats at the Congress during the midterms.

The main reason why Donald Trump can worry is that usually, the midterms turnout is below that of the general elections but this time, a study revealed that voter turnout had increased in primary elections across the country this year. While only 36.4 per cent of eligible voters had voted in 2014, half of the registered voters have reported being more enthusiastic about voting in 2018 to the Pew Research Centre.

Also, the number of votes cast in Democratic primaries for the US house were 84 per cent higher in July that at the same period in the 2014 midterms primaries.

In the end, the possible change of governors can have implications on the rights to vote for millions of citizens. In Florida, since 2011, Rick Scott has stripped voting rights from people convicted for a felony, which was not the case before.


By Odile Longueval

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