Midterm Elections

How Important are the 2022 Midterm Elections?

Midterm elections regularly receive significantly less attention than primary elections. The difference in the number of voters for midterm and primary elections is also significant. Voter turnout in primary elections averages at about 60% and 40% in midterm elections. Most people care about the primary elections. However, it seems that people in general don’t care at all about the midterm elections. Is this because midterm elections are less important than primary elections?

What are Midterm Elections?

If we want to know if midterm elections are important, we have to know what they are first. Midterm elections happen two years after the primary elections. Presidents aren’t elected during midterm elections but there is still a lot happening. There are 34 Senate seats and 435 House seats up for election this year. This is a very big deal. Congress has more seats up for an election than not. This creates potential for a very radical change. Congress is responsible for making laws, declaring war, and establish federal courts. In addition to this, there are over 7,000 state legislature seats up for election. Some people argue that who serves in the state legislature is more important because their actions have a more direct effect on the lives of citizens in comparison to Congress.

Why are Midterm Elections Important?

Midterm elections have historically been very impactful. In the 2018 midterm elections, the Democratic Party gained control of the House of Representatives and the Republican Party expanded their majority in the Senate. This has long lasting impact. Members of the House of Representatives serve for two years and Senators serve for six years. A lot can happen in a few years. In 2019 alone, Congress introduced over 8,000 bills and 105 federal laws were passed. Consequently, it is essential to vote in midterm elections. Choosing not to is deciding not to have a say in who makes the laws that we all have to follow. Choosing not to vote in midterm elections doesn’t make any sense because they are just as important as the primary elections. Voting in the primary elections but not in the midterm elections is similar to closing your front door at night but not locking it.

My Voting Experience

Voting can sometimes be a long and difficult process. The lines can be very long. The polling places can be very far away. To avoid having to deal with this, I vote early and by mail. It makes the voting process much faster and easier. I spoke to other people my age and found out that they are very adamant about voting. They feel motivated by the Supreme Court’s recent decisions regarding abortion, as well as civic duty.

Why are the 2022 Midterm Elections Important?

Congress has a total of 535 seats in the Senate and House of Representatives. Out of those 535 seats, 469 of them are up for election. Since 88% of Congressional seats are up for election, it is possible for Congress to look very different after the election is over. In addition to this, 88 out the 99 state legislative chambers are holding elections this year. These elections are happening in almost every state, including Maryland, California, Florida, Texas, New York, Illinois, Delaware, and Pennsylvania. Congress members and state legislators make important decisions that directly affect us and there is an incredibly large number of seats up for election, which makes this year’s election incredibly important.

Sources

“Election Results, 2018.” Ballotpedia, https://ballotpedia.org/Election_results,_2018

FairVote.org. “Voter Turnout.” FairVote, https://www.fairvote.org/voter_turnout#voter_turnout_101.

 “State Legislative Elections, 2022.” Ballotpedia, https://ballotpedia.org/State_legislative_elections,_2022

 Teitelbaum, Michael. “Congress Saw More Bills Introduced in 2019 than It Has in 40 Years, but Few Passed.” Roll Call, 22 Jan. 2020, https://rollcall.com/2020/01/22/congress-saw-more-bills-introduced-in-2019-than-it-has-in-40-years-but-few-passed . “United States Congress Elections, 2022.” Ballotpedia, https://ballotpedia.org/United_States_Congress_elections,_2022 .

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