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Three things to watch out for in the US midterms

The nationwide results will determine the future of Joe Biden’s presidency, and of American democracy itself.

By Emily Tamkin

WASHINGTON DC – The midterm elections in the United States are tomorrow (8 November). Here are three things to watch out for.

1. Keep an eye on the governors’ and secretaries of state elections. Most midterms coverage focuses on whether Democrats will keep or lose the Senate and House. There’s a good reason for this – namely, the result will determine whether any legislation will pass in the next two years. But for the future of American democracy, the more important races might be those for governor and secretary of state. After all, it is these offices that set the rules for future elections – like, say, the presidential election of 2024. (I wrote more about this here.)

2. Whither white suburban women. After the Roe vs Wade decision on the federal right to abortion was overturned in June, some predicted that women would rebel by voting for Democrats in the midterms. Recent polling, however, suggests that white suburban women are swinging back towards the Republican Party. But what will it be at the ballot box?

3. Who claims victory on the night? As we know by now, counting the ballots in certain states can take a long time. Pay attention to who tries to claim victory while votes are still being counted – and what they have to say about election integrity.

 As for the main event – the House and Senate – the New Statesman’s polls expert Ben Walker has set up a poll tracker. His prediction is that the Democrats will lose the House but manage to keep the Senate. While that would derail any significant legislation from getting passed in the next two years, it would also mean that House Republicans’ threats to impeach Joe Biden would remain toothless and that if another Supreme Court seat were to open up, for example, Biden could fill it without Republican obstruction.

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I’ll be live-blogging the midterm election results on the NS website as they come in on Tuesday night, along with our senior editor for China and global affairs, Katie. We may not know the outcome of every race on the night, but we will be there to help you to make sense of what does happen. We hope you’ll be there along with us.

This article first appeared in the World Review newsletter. It comes out on Mondays and Fridays; subscribe here.

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