Divided US Congress: House for Republicans, Senate for Democrats
Divided US Congress: House for Republicans, Senate for Democrats

The Republicans have taken control of the House of Representatives as the US gets ready for a weaker president during the remaining term of incumbent Joe Biden after the electorate gave a divided mandate in midterm elections.

 As of now, different projections given by various media houses show the Republicans have won 2018 seats – the magic figure for majority in the House comprising 435 members.

On the other hand, the Democrats are victorious in 210 contests, according to the CNN, while the AP says the tally stands at 212. So far, the Republicans have flipped 18 seats that propelled them to regain the House majority.

Meanwhile, the Republicans’ success has forced Speaker Nancy Pelosi to step down as the Democratic leader in the House. However, she said she would continue serving as a member.

Pelosi, 82, from San Francisco, California – the first woman to hold that influential post – has as speaker. She has served as the House member for 35 years.

It is important to note that unlike the parliamentary democracies, the majority leader in the House occupies the slot of speaker in the US House of Representative.

The Republicans controlling the House will be a great obstacle for President Biden during his remaining tenure. However, the Democrats defied all predictions and are able to retain the Senate. In fact, they snatched one of seats from the Republicans as John Fetterman defeated Republican Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania.

However, the margin of an expected Republican majority in the House is narrower than the polls conducted before the elections.

Experts are of the view that the Republicans’ hardline on issues like abortion rights made women and young voters to vote for the Democrats. 

Moreover, the Democrats have performed very well in state elections – legislatures and governorship – which will enable them protect and boost abortion rights and social services in states like Michigan and others. Even in several red states, they are now in a position to thwart the Republicans’ plans thanks to improving their tally in or controlling either of the state House or Senate (North Carolina is an example) or winning the slot of governor like in Arizona.     

However, the Republicans can still not only affect the domestic politics by creating hurdles in implementing Boden’s agenda but also international affairs as the most of them, especially the pro-Trump camp, are against supporting Ukraine militarily because of their pro-Putin inclinations.      

Earlier, Donald Trump, despite some opposition, hesitation and fears among the Republican Party’s circles and supporters, had announced that he would run for the office yet again in 2024 despite facing multiple criminal investigations and the poor performance of the candidates he backed in the midterm elections.

“I am running because I believe the world has not yet seen the true glory of what this nation can be,” he said, adding, “We will again put America first.”

But there is a clear opposition to him as influential Rupert Murdoch reportedly earlier warned Trump that his media empire would not back any attempt to return to the White House.

His reaction comes after the Republicans disappointing performance in midterm elections, in particular the poor showing by candidates backed by Trump despite winning the House majority as the much-touted red wave didn’t materialize. Thus, Murdoch’s rightwing media empire appears to be seeking a clean break from the former president’s damaged reputation and perceived waning political power.

Last week, Murdoch’s influential media empire, including right-leaning Fox News, his flagship paper the Wall Street Journal, and the New York Post, each rounded on Trump, calling him a loser and a flop responsible for dragging the Republicans into “one political fiasco after another”.

In an interesting development, his daughter Ivanka Trump has decided to bow out of US politics and not actively join her father’s bid to retake the White House in 2024 and said she had chosen “to prioritize my young children and the private life we are creating as a family”.

“I love my father very much. This time around, I am choosing to prioritize my young children and the private life we are creating as a family. I do not plan to be involved in politics,” read a statement.

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