(WASHINGTON) — The 2022 midterm elections are shaping up to be some of the most consequential in the nation’s history, with control of Congress at stake.
All 435 seats in the House and 35 of 100 seats in the Senate are on the ballot, as well as several influential gubernatorial elections in battleground states like Arizona, Georgia, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
Democrats are defending their narrow majorities in both chambers. Republican control of either the House or Senate would be enough to curtail most of President Joe Biden’s agenda, and would likely result in investigations against his administration and even his family.
Americans are already coming out in full force this cycle. As of Nov. 5, more than 38 million voters had already cast their ballot, according to data from the University of Florida’s U.S. Elections Project.
This is how the story is developing:
Nov 07, 6:34 AM EST
What the midterms mean for U.S. foreign policy
Domestic issues like abortion rights and the economy have taken center stage this cycle, but the elections could also have a big impact on foreign policy.
Experts told ABC News that the outcome of the races will drive the U.S. response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, as Republicans in Congress have hinted at curbing the steady stream of financial assistance to Ukraine. They also said the elections could also impact efforts to revive the Iran nuclear deal, as Republicans have generally opposed a return to the agreement all along.
“If there is a change in control of Congress, because of how partisan unfortunately a lot of Iran policy has become, there would be more pressure–given that the current administration and many Democrats in general campaigned on resurrecting a deal and engaging with Iran,” Behnam Ben Taleblu, a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, told ABC News. “There certainly will be desire for more scrutiny and oversight.”
Nov 07, 6:17 AM EST
Biden implores voters to save democracy
President Joe Biden is casting the midterms not as a referendum on his leadership, but an inflection point for the nation amid threats to democracy.
“We must with an overwhelming voice stand against political violence and voter intimidation, period,” he said at a Democratic National Committee event the week before Election Day. “Stand up and speak against it. We don’t settle our differences in America with a riot, a mob, or a bullet or a hammer. We settle them peacefully at the ballot box.”
In the speech, Biden specifically referenced the assault on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s husband and the swath of candidates running this cycle who’ve embraced Donald Trump’s lies about the 2020 election.
“American democracy is under attack because the defeated former president of the United States refuses to accept the results of the 2020 election,” Biden said. “He refuses to accept the will of the people, he refuses to accept the fact that he lost.”
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