Society

GOP Poised to Keep Control After 2018 Elections

| by Lauren Briggs

Though President Donald Trump's opponents remain vocal, Republicans are poised to hold onto their congressional majorities in the 2018 elections.

Princeton University statistician Sam Wang says that it "would take an extreme event" for Democrats to win back the House and Senate, even though they trail their Lonservative counterparts by only a few Senate seats, reports Newsmax.

But could that "extreme event" be on its way?

"Democrats are extremely fired up right now," said Wang.

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Indeed, some 675,000 newcomers pledged their support to the Democratic committee in January, as Trump was inaugurated and enacted a number of controversial policies.

Whether or not Democrats and Trump opponents are able to keep that momentum going into the 2018 elections remains one of the most significant variables, which some experts believe could depend in large part on whether or not Trump implements radical change.

"Politicians sometimes think that they made promises and their voters want them to keep them, but the historical pattern is the opposite -- that public opinion moves against the direction of policy change," said Institute for Public Policy and Social Research Director Matt Grossmann of Michigan State University. " … So the more Donald Trump is successful -- and the Republican Party is successful -- in moving policy to the right, the bigger the backlash is likely to be."

Another component of the Democrats' uphill battle comes in the form of gerrymandering. After winning a majority in 2010, Republicans redrew congressional districts in a way that concentrates Democrats into fewer areas. Though some of those districts have been redrawn since then, a large number are still in place for 2018.

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"There are just more districts at the moment that have a natural tilt toward Republicans, partly because of Democratic geography and partly because of Republicans drawing districts with an eye toward helping pick up more seats for their party," said Brigham Young University assistant political science professor Michael Barber.

Despite a close balance in the Senate, the majority of seats up for election in 2018 are those occupied by Democrats, so Republicans have the ability to focus on winning over some of those new seats, rather than defending their own.

Of the 13 seats gearing up for a tough fight, 11 belong to Democrats and two to Republicans, notes The Huffington Post.

Sources: Newsmax, Huffington Post / Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore/Flickr

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