As much of the media remain focused on the “deeply divided” America supposedly reflected in the split in control of the House and Senate, here are two critical facts that are getting neglected:
1. In the House elections, the Democrats share of the popular vote is 7.2 percent greater than the Republicans. (That number may change slightly as votes continue to be counted). Once more, the number of Americans voting for Democrats was far ahead of those voting Republican. As of November 9, the Democrats had gained 30 House seats.
- A stark comparison: in the midterm 2010 elections, which all sides acknowledged was a wave election, the Republicans won control of the House of Representatives with an impressive pickup of 63 seats–with a 7.2 percent edge in the popular vote. For the GOP in 2010, that edge translated into a gain of nearly twice as many seats as Democrats this year.
- The main cause of that startling disparity between 2010 and 2018: criminal gerrymandering by Republican state legislatures.
- And in the Senate? Democrats lead Republicans by about 9 million votes. (Some reports say more than 12 million votes in the Senate races. See also an alternative analysis)
Put those two facts together with Hillary’s 3 million vote margin over Trump in the 2016 presidential election, and the conclusion is clear: the Democratic Party is the majority party in the United States.
Laurence Tribe, a constitutional law professor at Harvard University, has pointed out:
- “The rise of minority rule in America is now unmistakable.”
- “Especially with a sitting president who won a majority in the electoral college [in 2016] while receiving roughly 3 million fewer votes than his opponent, and a supreme court five of whose nine justices were nominated by Republican presidents who collectively received fewer popular votes than their Democratic opponents and were confirmed by similarly skewed Senates.”
Here are some additional reports that flesh out the fact that 2018 was a wave election for Democrats:
- According to a projection by the Times early this morning (November 7), the Democrats were set to win the popular vote by seven percentage points.
- Only the rampant gerrymandering of the past few decades contained the size of the Democratic majority.
Nearly a quarter of a century later, Democrats apparently won the House “popular vote” by 7%.
- Republicans, increasingly, wield power only because America’s political system insulates them from the public’s judgments. The leader of their party — and of the country — came in second in the popular vote to Hillary Clinton and, despite a roaring economy, hasn’t cracked 50 percent in the polls since taking office.
- Tonight, Republicans lost the House, and if Democrats hadn’t been defending 26 Senate seats to Republicans’ nine, it’s likely they would’ve seen a rout in the Senate, too.