Well, it looks like the Democrats have finally come to terms with the fact that Republicans will thrash them worse than Jake Paul thrashed Tyron Woodley on Saturday. High-ranking Democratic officials are reportedly brainstorming ways to limit the damage caused by their impending shellacking in the House and possibly the Senate in the 2022 midterm elections.
Interviews with more than two dozen state party chairs, executive directors and strategists suggest party officials are reframing the 2022 election as a defensive effort, with success defined as maintaining the Democratic Senate majority and holding back a Republican tide in the House.
During a conversation with the news outlet, Colmon Elridge, chair of the Kentucky Democratic Party, laid out the Democratic Party’s grim situation. “Success looks like we hold the Senate and we hold the House, or we narrowly lose it, so if Republicans take control, it’s a razor-thin margin,” he said.
He added: “I would hope [the Republican margin in the House] is less than 20.”
In the article, the author describes a Democratic Party that has moved “from a state of denial to a place of bargaining” when it comes to its prospects for 2022. Democratic leaders are sounding the alarm and trying to emphasize the urgency of getting as much leftist legislation passed before they lose the House next year. “If Democrats can keep the chamber close enough, they believe they can make a credible run at the majority again two years later, when a presidential election year could make conditions for the party more favorable,” according to the report.
Politico interviewed leaders at a meeting in Charleston where Democrats gathered to participate in presentations, and training. It seems many other high-profile Democrats agreed with Elridge’s assessment. One state party chair said, “I don’t see any way we keep the House.” Another explained, “If we’re in the 10 to 20 [loss of House seats] range, that will be better than we thought.”
There can be no wonder why Democrats are shaking in their pixie boots. Politico noted:
By every conventional measure, Democrats are staring into a midterm abyss. Inflation is soaring, and large majorities of Americans are anxious about the economy. Biden’s approval ratings — a metric closely tied to a party’s performance in the midterms — are stuck in the low 40s, according to the FiveThirtyEight polling average, and generic ballot tests pitting unnamed Republicans against unnamed Democrats have swung in the GOP’s favor.
The COVID-19 pandemic isn’t doing the left any favors. After lambasting former President Trump all through 2020 for each COVID death that occurred, it is becoming harder to ignore the fact that President Joe Biden isn’t doing much better even with the availability of vaccines. Indeed, more people have died from the coronavirus this year than in 2020.
There is also the ongoing migrant crisis that Biden created and the apparent inability – or unwillingness – to address the problem in a meaningful way. The flood of migrants to the southern border has also empowered Mexican drug cartels and played a contributing role in the record-breaking number of overdose deaths that America has experienced in 2021.
It seems Democrats believe they can either maintain their positions or limit the damage they will sustain in 2022 if they can pass Biden’s $1.7 trillion climate and social spending package as well as election reform measures. However, they recently experienced yet another setback when it became apparent they would not be able to pass the Build Back Better Act by the end of 2021. Sen. Joe Manchin on Sunday all but ensured Biden would not get his way — at least until after the year ends.
Hendrell Remus, chair of the Tennessee Democratic Party, said:
“If we could get the Build Back Better plan passed and get a strong voting rights bill passed, Democrats will have a strong possibility of at least keeping the Senate.”
Of course, in public, the Democrats will likely continue to express optimism related to their chances of winning next year. Politico noted:
Publicly, Democrats are still projecting confidence that they can maintain the House in 2022. And it’s not impossible that they will. The Omicron variant, while highly contagious, appears typically to cause mild disease. The economy is showing signs of strength. If the virus and inflation can be brought under control by mid-2022, the mood of the electorate may dramatically improve, likely helping the party in power.
However, despite their public proclamations, the Democrats do not have reason for optimism, and they know it. After Virginia’s gubernatorial election, the writing was on the wall. Those in the party who are focused more on damage control and preventing their loss from becoming an all-out massacre are smart.
At this point, all the Democrats can hope for is limiting the damage done and keeping the Republicans from winning a decisive majority in the House while still holding on to the Senate. From here on out, the question isn’t whether the Democrats will lose the House in the midterm elections; the question is: How badly will they lose?