What comes next won’t be normal, either

The US midterm elections mark a new and more dangerous phase of the Trump presidency, writes Jacob Parakilas

The World Today Published 7 December 2018 Updated 9 November 2020 3 minute READ

Dr Jacob Parakilas

Former Deputy Head, US and the Americas Programme

Liberals across the United States and Europe, still reeling from 2016’s double whammy of Brexit and Trump, woke up on the morning of Wednesday November 7 with a sense of relief, if not elation.

But for all that the election of a Democratic-controlled House of Representatives provides a new check on an illiberal president, the results do not spell the end of the Trump era. Rather, they point to its evolution into a new and potentially more volatile phase.

It is worth pointing out first that the results were not deeply surprising. Opinion polls, having been savaged for missing the results of the 2016 elections, were largely right: a significant wave of left-leaning voters delivered some 40 seats in the House of Representatives into the hands of the Democrats, comfortably more than the 23 they needed to secure control of the chamber.

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