Why no party has a sustainable political majority

Asia's Tech News Daily

Let me tell you a little story. Nine years ago, Barack Obama won a second term in office, and there was talk of an emerging Democratic majority in presidential elections. Then came Donald Trump, the least liked major party nominee of all time, who won the 2016 election — albeit without winning the popular vote. 

© Alex Wong/Getty Images North America/Getty Images WASHINGTON, DC – OCTOBER 05: U.S. Senate Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) leaves after a weekly Senate Republican policy luncheon at the U.S. Capitol October 5, 2021 in Washington, DC. Senate GOPs held a weekly policy luncheon to discuss Republican agenda. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Now, there is talk of Democrats potentially being locked out of a Senate majority for a time to come because of trends in the electorate. 

I am skeptical of this — at least over the long term. History tells us that parties adjust messaging and tend to find the best pathway to a majority, leaving this to be a 50/50 country on average.  

Political scientist David Hopkins articulates the idea of this nation being a 50/50 one well. He notes that since the 1980 elections, Democrats and Republicans have won control of the House, Senate and presidency about the same number of times. They have controlled all three for about the same time, including for the Democrats at this point. 

This shouldn’t be surprising. As political analyst Sean Trende posited in the book “The Lost Majority,” history is filled with examples of majorities falling apart and the parties coming in and out of power. The book was published before the 2012 elections and has held up quite well.  

Obama won a second term with a decent economy in 2012. Despite Trump being unpopular as he was, we saw the presidency change hands after 2016 as it often does when one party has been in the White House for more than a term. Then we saw a president lose in 2020 with a weak, though not terrible, economy and a pandemic unlike anything the country had experienced in more than a century. 

All of these election results were predicted to a fairly accurate degree by fundamentals based political science models.

So why would the future be any different when it comes to the Senate? Well it comes down to two pretty simple points. 

First, Democratic power is more concentrated than Republican power in terms of geography. You can see this in the 2020 results with now-President Joe Biden reaching a clear majority in the Electoral College and popular vote, but only winning 25 states. Trump, on the other hand, took 30 states in 2016, despite losing the popular vote and winning with a similar number of electoral votes. 

Second, and this is key, presidential and Senate voting patterns are more closely aligned than at any point in recent history. Just one state (Maine in 2020) voted differently in the Senate and presidential races that were on the ballot in the last two presidential elections

And since each state has an equal number of senators, a nation that votes 50/50 in the popular vote on the presidential level will have more Republican senators over the long-term because that translates into winning more states. 

To be clear, the idea of Republicans having a structural advantage in the Senate isn’t a new one. It’s one I made in 2013 when I was trying to rebuff the talk of an emerging Democratic majority, which is why I take the point so seriously. 

But I’m not sure I was correct eight years ago. The thing I didn’t take into account is that this hasn’t been a 50/50 nation in the presidential popular vote over the last three decades. 

Democrats have earned more votes nationwide in seven of the previous eight presidential races. That’s the most popular vote wins in eight presidential elections for either party since the Democratic Party was founded in the first half of the 19th century. 

Republicans, of course, have still managed to win three of the last eight presidential elections. Recently, the party has adjusted to win elections with fewer votes by having their votes are concentrated in the right places. This is something some Republicans note openly

Indeed, the nomination of Trump was a tacit acknowledgment of that strategy. You put someone on the presidential ticket whose support comes disproportionately from White voters without a college degree, which is a group that has a disproportionate amount of power in the Electoral College (in large part because of the Great Lake battleground states). In doing so, you’re losing more voters overall, but allowing you to win with fewer votes because they’re in the right places. 

Over the long term this has come out to being close to a wash in states won. Since 1992, Democrats have won 25.5 states in the median election. Republicans have won 24.5. On average, Democrats have won 25 states to Republicans 25. 

In the last three presidential elections, Democrats have won 25 states in the median election and 24 on average. I point out the last three because the strong correlation between presidential and Senate results really only started in the 2010s

If you play out these Senate elections over and over again, you’d probably end up with pretty equal power in the Senate between Democrats and Republicans assuming straight ticket voting between Senate and presidential voting. 

To be clear, this doesn’t mean that Republicans won’t end up winning the Senate more times than Democrats. If voters are prone to balancing power (which they usually do), Republicans will do well in midterms and that could carry over to more wins overall because only one-third of the Senate is up for election every presidential cycle. Republicans could easily take back control of the Senate in 2022, which I think is the most likely outcome. 

It’s that the default isn’t as pro-Republican as one might assume. 

I’ll end by saying we have no idea if the current degree of straight ticket voting will stay the same, pick up or even shrink in years to come. We don’t know what the coalitions will look like. Just like Trump came on the scene and exacerbated the educational divide, another candidate may change the electoral calculus in the future. Parties and their messages aren’t stagnant. 

Just this past election, Biden actually performed better by a few points among White voters without a college degree than Hillary Clinton. At the same time, the gap between Whites and people of color (which used to be growing) shrunk, something I don’t think most thought would happen given Trump’s rhetoric. 

During the Biden presidency, that racial divide in voter preferences may be going down even more, as The Washington Post’s Phillip Bump has called attention to.

The bottom line is no one knows where voter opinion and election outcomes will go from here.

Internet Explorer Channel Network
Asia's Tech News Daily
News Related


The London Underground line that could end up with 68-year-old trains

In the past few weeks, Mayor Sadiq Khan has been vehemently warning anyone who will listen that if Transport for London (TfL) doesn’t get the funding it needs to plug ... Read more »

‘Slavery was an atrocity,' Prince Charles says as Barbados becomes a republic

Prince Charles has acknowledged the “appalling atrocity of slavery”, describing it as something “which forever stains our history”, during the ceremony marking Barbados’ historic transition to a republic. Prince Charles ... Read more »

Prince Charles denounces the ‘atrocity of slavery' as Barbados becomes a republic, cuts ties with UK

Prince Charles denounced the “atrocity of slavery” and Britain’s legacy of the slave trade as Barbados removed his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, as head of state. On Monday, the 73-year-old, ... Read more »

Electricity should be restored to everyone before Christmas, vows minister

The Business Secretary has promised to do everything possible to restore power to homes affected by Storm Arwen before Christmas. Five days after what Kwasi Kwarteng said was a storm ... Read more »

Anti-vaccine televangelist Marcus Lamb dies of COVID-19

© Daystar Television Network screen-shot-2021-12-01-at-8-19-29-am.png © Provided by CBS News Marcus Lamb of the Daystar Christian network. / Credit: Daystar Television Network Marcus Lamb, the founder and president of the ... Read more »

15 Bizarre Royal Family Holiday Rules They're Not Allowed to Break

© Getty Images Queen Elizabeth portrait in a very festive room featuring a Christmas tree ‘Tis the season for family gatherings, festive markets, cookie exchanges — and wondering exactly how ... Read more »

The Guardian: Trump tested positive for Covid-19 ahead of 2020 debate with Biden

Then-President Donald Trump tested positive for Covid-19 three days ahead of his first 2020 presidential debate with Joe Biden — though he also had a negative result in that same ... Read more »

All You Want for Christmas: Mariah Carey's Style Evolution

© Getty Images Mariah Carey performing a holiday concert in a red dress With Christmas right around the corner, who better to deck the (fashion) halls with than the undisputed ... Read more »

Mercedes Favorit, Verstappen in Defensive? - F1-Vorschau GP Saudi-Arabien 2021

© Wilhelm Es sind keine zwei Wochen mehr, dann steht der neue Weltmeister der Formel 1 fest. Max Verstappen oder Lewis Hamilton: Wer macht sich zum Champion? Der 24-Jährige erstmals ... Read more »

Zwei Transfer-Knaller: Davos schnappt sich Nati-Star und Lugano verliert Top-Stürmer

© Bereitgestellt von Blick 01.05.2021; Biel; Eishockey Nationalmannschaft – WM Vorbereitung – Schweiz – Russland;Vasily Podkolzin (RUS) gegen Michael Fora (SUI) (Pascal Muller/freshfocus) Es ist ein herber Verlust für Ambri. ... Read more »

Fort Lauderdale man sentenced to 40 years for slew of internet child-porn charges

A young Fort Lauderdale man was sentenced Tuesday to 40 years in prison for using his Instagram accounts to manipulate seven girls into sending him sexually explicit images and then ... Read more »

Explosion of WWII bomb in Munich injures 4, disrupts trains

© Provided by Associated Press Firefighters, police officers and railway employees stand on a railway site in Munich, Germany, Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021. Police in Germany say three people have ... Read more »

The gaffer picks the team, says Lisa Nandy in swipe at Angela Rayner over Labour reshuffle

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer walks to his shadow cabinet meeting with new appointees David Lammy, the shadow foreign secretary, Yvette Cooper, the shadow home secretary, and Rachel Reeves, the ... Read more »

PMQs: Boris Johnson denies hospitals plan labelled unachievable

Photograph: Reuters Prime minister contradicts health department’s response to report of ‘red’ rating for new hospitals scheme Boris Johnson has denied a report that his flagship pledge to build 40 ... Read more »

TfL halts road safety ad after ‘victim blaming' backlash from cyclists

London mayor’s cycling and walking chief pauses ad showing cyclist and driver making up after collision Transport for London has halted an ad campaign promoting road safety that featured a ... Read more »

I'm A Celeb in ‘fix' row as campers are being ‘completely ignored' on screen

I’M A Celebrity left viewers fuming last night as some campers were seen less on screen – with fans calling it unfair. People watching at home hit out at the ... Read more »

Voices: We now have a chance to guarantee paid leave for parents who experience a miscarriage

Voices: We now have a chance to guarantee paid leave for parents who experience a miscarriage From the moment you start to plan for a family, all your hopes and ... Read more »

Kyle Rittenhouse says he is destroying AR-15 used in Kenosha shootings

Kyle Rittenhouse said he will “destroy” the AR-15-style weapon he used in the fatal shooting of two people last year at a racial injustice protest in Kenosha, Wisconsin. During an ... Read more »

EXCLUSIVE: Rahman to play Tiger Shroff's father in Ganapath; Read Deets

© Provided by Pinkvilla Soon after completing the UK schedule of Ahmed Khan’s Sajid Nadiadwala backed Heropanti 2, Tiger Shroff started shooting for Vikas Bahl’s Ganapath in the Queen’s City. ... Read more »

Sunny Deol, Ameesha Patel transform into Tara and Sakeena as they begin shooting shooting for Gadar 2

© Provided by Jagran English New Delhi | Jagran Entertainment desk: Gadar 2 stars, Sunny Deol, and Ameesha Patel have started shooting for the much-anticipated film’s sequel on Wednesday. Actor ... Read more »

Mukti Mohan Is All Set To Explore Love In Her Next Romantic Comedy ‘Ishq Chakallas'

© Provided by Lehren Mukti Mohan Is All Set To Explore Love In Her Next Romantic Comedy ‘Ishq Chakallas’  Actress Mukti Mohan is all set to feature in a romantic ... Read more »

Dhvani Bhanushali debuts as composer-lyricist with 'Mera Yaar' featuring Aditya Seal

© IANS Dhvani Bhanushali debuts as composer-lyricist with ‘Mera Yaar’ featuring Aditya Seal Mumbai, Dec 1 (IANS) Dhvani Bhanushalis debut track as a composer and lyricist, ‘Mera Yaar has hit ... Read more »

'Virat had a huge say in this': Daniel Vettori identifies the 'heir to Kohli', names his replacement as captain of RCB

Now that all eight IPL franchises have named the players to be retained, the focus shifts to the IPL 2022 mega auction. Although no date has been officially announced for ... Read more »

UAE's Ninety-90 Bash to be held in May-June next year in Sharjah

© Provided by The Times of India The much awaited Ninety-90 Bash will be held in May-June next year at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium in the UAE. The Ninety-90 Bash ... Read more »

Brian Kelly may have screwed Notre Dame even further with playoff twist

There’s another twist in the crazy college football coaching carousel of the past week. Brian Kelly stunned Notre Dame – and the rest of the country – when he bolted ... Read more »

How you can raise money for children living with cancer this festive season by simply sending a Christmas card

THE winners of our great Xmas Cards For Kids contest have been chosen and now YOU can start buying them today to raise money for gifts for children living with ... Read more »

The Kapil Sharma Show: Salman Khan reminds fan that Shah Rukh Khan is his 'Bhai'; says, 'Yeh mind main leke chalo' - watch video

© Provided by BollywoodLife.com Trust Salman Khan to shut down detractors with swag. He had come on The Kapil Sharma Show to promote his film, Antim: The Final Truth. There, ... Read more »

Russia accuses Ukraine of troop buildup as Kiev urges NATO sanctions

Russian President Vladimir Putin, who said Tuesday that Moscow would retaliate if the US or NATO crossed a “red line” by deploying missiles in Ukraine. Mikhail Metzel, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool ... Read more »

Neha Kakkar kisses hubby Rohanpreet Singh on his birthday, cuts cake. Watch

Neha Kakkar and Rohanpreet Singh never fail to give us some major relationship goals. Rohanpreet is celebrating his birthday today, December 1, and he spent the special day with his ... Read more »

Anthony Smith, president of Magdalen College, Oxford, who was a wise pastor to students and is also remembered for the founding of Channel 4 – obituary

Anthony Smith, who has died aged 83, made his name as the Director of the British Film Institute and helped to found Channel 4, but he will be best remembered ... Read more »

EU urges joint fight with Arab states against migrant traffickers

© ARIS MESSINIS A European Union flag flutters behind the barbed wire at a new “closed” reception centre for migrants on the Greek island of Kos — rights groups have ... Read more »

Hamdok would quit if post-coup deal not implemented and supported - source

© Reuters/Sarah Meyssonnier FILE PHOTO: International Conference in support of Sudan in Paris KHARTOUM (Reuters) – Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok will only stay in office if a political agreement ... Read more »

India becomes part of G20 Troika, to host summit in 2023

© Provided by WION India joined the G20 Troika on Wednesday. The troika now consists of Indonesia, Italy and India. The G20 is the premier forum for international economic cooperation, ... Read more »

Meet Geoffrey, the cutest meal delivery robot and downtown Toronto celebrity

© Provided by Maclean’s Geoffrey at work in downtown Toronto (Photograph by Christie Vuong) Geoffrey at work in downtown Toronto (Photograph by Christie Vuong) Imagine an AI-driven future where human ... Read more »

Gesa P Pinang hadkan jualan alkohol, wakil PAS diselar

© Provided by Free Malaysia Today Wakil PAS Mohd Yusni Mat Piah diselar selepas mencadangkan Pulau Pinang mengehadkan jualan minuman beralkohol dan premis 4D. GEORGE TOWN: Seorang wakil PAS diselar ... Read more »

Top nine things Mira Kapoor revealed in her first YouTube video

© Provided by The Indian Express Mira Kapoor, who is quite active on Instagram, recently launched her YouTube channel. Mira, who regularly shares snippets from her everyday life on social ... Read more »

Henti guna lantikan politik, gesa G25

© Provided by Free Malaysia Today G25 menyifatkan lantikan politik tambahan sebagai pembaziran dana kerana kerja itu sudah dilakukan penjawat awam sedia ada. PETALING JAYA: Perdana Menteri, Ismail Sabri Yaakob ... Read more »

Take a bow: 62 photos that chart Rihanna's style journey from music star to fashion mogul

© getty LF01 jun style evo Rihanna main Rihanna may only be 33, but she’s been a red-carpet regular for nearly half her life. And how the Barbadian singer, whose first ... Read more »

UAE records 68 new Covid-19 cases

© PAWAN SINGH UAE officials announced last month that 100 per cent of the eligible population had received one dose of a vaccine. Photo: Pawan Singh / The National Live ... Read more »

Czech-Belarus Women's WCup qualifier postponed until 2022

PRAGUE (AP) — A postponed Women’s World Cup qualifying game between the Czech Republic and Belarus will be played in 2022, the Czech soccer association said Wednesday. The match was ... Read more »
On free-english-test.com you will find lots of free English exam practice materials to help you improve your English skills: grammar, listening, reading, writing, ielts, toeic