US midterm vote likely to draw historic numbers to the polls

A truck drives displaying a message reading ‘Vote Out Hate

A truck drives displaying a message reading ‘Vote Out Hate

It has not been unusual for a Democratic campaign event to occur with no reference to the president.

Democrats have largely resisted excoriating Trump on his words and actions, although he has denounced the party at his political rallies as an angry, unsafe "mob".

A slim Republican majority in the House would also present challenges, likely inflaming simmering intraparty disputes.

In 2006, George W Bush lost 30 seats to Nancy Pelosi's Democrats. "That is particularly true when a president is unpopular, as this president is". RealClearPolitics puts Trump's average approval at about 43 percent, with 53 percent disapproving. He's less popular than Lyndon Johnson in 1966, Jimmy Carter in 1978, Clinton in 1994, and Barack Obama in 2010 and 2014.

If moderates are aghast at Trump's constant appeal to the fringe, his loyalists believe that Trump's success speaks to the more mundane, structural causes of inequity and racial polarisation.

All five Senate vacancies are Republican-held seats, including two in suburban Philadelphia and one each based in suburban Pittsburgh, and Blair and York counties.

A new Washington Post-ABC News poll suggested that while Democrats retain an edge in their battle for the House, Republicans could take advantage of increasingly positive assessments of the economy and by Trump's harsh focus on border security.

Another way to read the tea-leaves is to look at the popularity of the two parties themselves, as revealed in the generic ballot.

Oprah Winfrey travelled to Georgia to campaign with Stacey Abrams ahead of the midterm election. Republicans are now behind by 8.5 percent. And Democratic leaders have already telegraphed a wariness about that. He has been campaigning for the Democratic Party, focusing on preserving the Affordable Care Act and warning of attempts by the Republicans to strip welfare measures to find money to offset the soaring deficit.

The Labor Department on Friday reported sharply better-than-expected job creation in October, with the unemployment rate steady at a 49-year low of 3.7 per cent and wages notching their best annual gain in nearly a decade. The #MeToo movement, health care and immigration issues all touch on how many Americans see themselves reflected in politics.

Newlyweds killed in helicopter crash after departing wedding ceremony
The Uvalde County Sheriff's Office posted on its Facebook page that the office received a call around midnight about the crash. On social media, wedding attendees have been posting their condolences in the captions of wedding photos.

While he has signed an anti-opioids bill and annual spending measures, he has yet to help broker a single piece of bipartisan legislation; for instance, he helped nix a compromise Senate immigration bill and several White House directed infrastructure weeks have produced no broad legislation.

Trump campaigned with Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp, who is in a tight race with Democrat Stacey Abrams for the governor's office. True, incumbent senators from the opposition party tend to win reelection.

Democrat Kirsten Gillibrand and Republican Chele Farley are going head-to-head for the seat. Joe Donnelly has a seven in 10 chance of winning re-election; Republican challenger Mike Braun has a three in 10 chance of defeating him.

"If the radical Democrats take power they will take a wrecking ball to our economy and our future", Trump declared in Cleveland, using the same heated rhetoric that has defined much of his presidency. But don't be surprised to see Mitch McConnell still in charge when all is said and done.

The former president campaigned in recent days in Florida, Georgia, Indiana and IL for a slate of Democrats running in key Senate and gubernatorial races. The hearings at which Kavanaugh was confronted by his accuser, Christine Blasey Ford, backfired spectacularly as men - and many women - all over the American heartland sided with Kavanaugh.

Mr Trump has dropped hints that the Democrats could take the House, saying a number of times that there were too many candidates for him to campaign with personally - a possible excuse if things do not go his way. Of course, there may be no stopping the polarization. Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook. The difference is that the Democrats have learned their lesson and are now unabashedly waging the info war - big data, bots, and all.

Yet there is another scenario. A driving force, on both sides, is rage: rage toward the president; rage the president has tried to foment against migrants, the news media and Democrats, among others. She loathes Trump, no doubt.

Mr Trump's fiery, invective-filled campaigning produced what may be the most polarised midterm contest in modern times as he played to tribal rifts in American society in a way that no president has done since before the civil rights era.

For British viewers, the USA midterms can be a bit niche.

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