In recent days, a flurry of big name senators have announced their interviews not to run again. In particular, a lot of attention has focused on retiring democratic senators although it’s important to note that quite a few republicans are set to retire too.
What impact will this have on Congress?
Firstly, it’s rather obvious to any political enthusiast that no matter what happens, Democrats are bound to loose some of its many seats and it’s majority will be much slimmer. That has little to do with policy or positions but rather a simple matter of history.
Secondly, Republicans are bound to get extra seats. But that doesn’t guarantee their return from the wilderness. By Michael Steele’s own admission, the GOP’s chances of winning a majority “Not this year“. Republicans will gain seats and momentum but will also have to deliver, not just oppose.
Finally, it means that while Obama is unlikely to be able to do with much without at least a handful of Republicans votes, it may usher in an era of true bipartisanship. While Obama must work with Republicans, many who will have to be more moderate in order to win the toss-up, Republicans is also under pressure to deliver.
The midterm elections will shake-up Congress, but essentially changes little. Democrats will have to work with Republicans and Republicans have to contribute more than ‘No’ and ‘Nope!’