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Everything We Know So Far About The Midterm Senate Races

With the 2022 midterm elections taking place on November 8th, most eyes are focused on the senate race

The midterm senate races are currently controlled by the democrats as vice President Kamala Harris breaks the 50-50 tie.

Midterm races are extremely important, especially to the President, as they determine whether Joe Biden will be able to get new policies passed. If either the Senate or Congress has a Republican majority, it will lead to a lot of President Biden’s policies getting blocked.

An example of these policies is the codification of reproductive rights and access to abortion, which Biden has said is one of his first goals in the second part of his term. 

Each state has two senators. This year, 35 Senate seats are on the ballot this November, as well as all 435 seats in the House of Representatives.

Currently, the Democrats hold a slim majority in both the House and the Senate. Recent polling suggests that the Democrats are likely to keep their majority in the Senate. The Economist’s data suggests a 76% likelihood of a democratic win. However, they are predicted to lose the House.

There are a few states where the results could swing either way. A few midterm senate races that many are keeping an eye on are in Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and New Hampshire.

A Gallup poll looked at the most important issues to Americans. With inflation, poor leadership, and the economy being key issues.

Whilst the President’s party typically loses seats in midterm elections, many nominated Republican candidates are viewed as potentially unelectable. And, while pessimism about the economy will hinder the Democrats, democratic voters may come out in full force in wake of the Supreme Court’s decision to permit tighter abortion restrictions. As we can see, there are multiple factors at play that could shift election results.

FiveThirtyEight data suggests that Democrats have an 80% chance of holding between 47 and 54 seats in the Senate. On the other hand, some say the Senate race is still too close to call and could go either way.

Kamala Harris
Kamala Harris
@ Jacquelyn Martin

What could happen if the Democrats win a majority in the Senate? 

Well, currently the Senate have a majority in a 50-50 senate headed by Vice President Harris. But, the Democrats are hoping to acquire at least two more sears due to the roadblocks they’ve been facing from moderate Democratic Senators Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Joe Manchin of West Virginia. Of course, gaining these extra Senate seats is less significant if the Democrats lose the house.

It’s unlikely that Republicans will flip the Senate, but it is looking increasingly likely that they will gain control of the House. If this happens, House Republicans are planning on announcing a “Commitment to America”. Reports suggest that the number one issue in this Commitment is the economy and inflation. However, they can be limited by a presidential veto as well as a likely Democratic Senate. 

Remember to check that you’re registered to vote for those who are eligible and that your voter records are up to date. Rules differ by state but some states require you to register up to 30 days before Election Day. You may also need a photo ID and mail-in voting may be different than it was in 2020, due to many red states coming down on the practice on the premise of voter fraud.


Community Featured LGBTQ

Utah Republicans Vote in Favor of Same-Sex Marriage

Republicans in Utah Suprise the Senate by Publicly Supporting Same-Sex Marriage

All four of Utah’s congress members made headlines by voting in favor of the Respect for Marriage Act on Tuesday, July 19. This is the same state that ranked last among all states in support of same-sex marriage as per a poll conducted in 2010 by Columbia University.

It was so surprising that Troy Williams, the executive director of Equality Utah, tweeted his gratefulness. “I just landed in Minneapolis to the stunning news that our entire Utah delegation voted to protect same-sex and interracial marriage. I’m in tears. Thank you,” he said.

Equality Utah is the state’s primary LGBTQ+ civil rights and advocacy organization. Their work has been instrumental in combating prejudice in one of the United States’ most religious and socially conservative states. Rep. John Curtis, R-Utah, stated that the majority opinion of the United States Supreme Court was not to undo any decisions concerning the right to marriage in the Constitution. He added that he understood how important it was for Utahns to codify same-sex marriage.

Pride graphic
Pride Graphic © Vecteezy

Same-sex marriage in Utah has been legal since October 6, 2014. This was the aftermath of Kitchen v. Herbert, which found the state’s ban on gay marriage unconstitutional in December 2013. It was ordered that the state should cease enforcing the ban immediately.

This didn’t deter conservative groups within the state from protesting against the ruling, given its highly religious traditions. Back in 1977, Utah State Legislature banned same-sex marriage in the state. However, support for LGBT rights in Utah has been increasing since it was legalized.

This happened because three same-sex couples had filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Utah seeking to declare its prohibition on the recognition of gay marriages as unconstitutional.

Gay Marriage © Getty Images
Same-Sex Marriage © Getty Images

Utah is among the 29 states with trigger bans in place should the Supreme Court overturn Obergefell v. Hodges. Existing laws in these states would make same-sex marriage illegal in a heartbeat.

Considering how the Supreme Court effectively overturned Roe v. Wade and sent abortion policy back for each state to decide, it could do the same with gay marriage by overturning the 2015 ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges.

Justice Clarence Thomas has made it clear that he and other court members should reconsider Obergefell, and the fact that it has been in place for a shorter time makes it an easier target for a reversal.

It seems like Utah’s Republicans do not particularly agree with that train of thought. To the surprise of practically everyone following U.S. politics closely, Utah’s Republican congressmen voted to protect same-sex marriage.


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Confederate Statue at U.S Capitol to be Replaced

Statue depicting Black educator Mary McLeod Bethune will replace the Confederate statue at U.S Capitol

The statue of Mary McLeod Bethune was displayed last week in the U.S. Capitol. She’s the first Black American in the National Statuary Hall collection. The unveiling ceremony for Ms. Bethune’s statue was hosted by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.)

Bethune was an American humanitarian, womanist, philanthropist, and educator. She founded the National Council of Negro Women in 1935 and the organization’s primary journal, the Aframerican Women’s Journal.

McLeod became a special adviser to U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt on the issues experienced by minority groups. She was a civil rights advocate and activist for African American affairs. She was also close with First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt and served in President Roosevelt’s unofficial Black Cabinet.

The debate on whether Confederate monuments should be kept or removed has been heated since June 17, 2015. The issue became more glaring when a 2017 white nationalist rally turned violent, protesting against the proposed removal of Confederate Army Generals Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson statues.

Mary McLeod Bethune Replaces Confederate statue
Mary McLeod Bethune Replaces Confederate statue © Nigel Cook

The historic statue removal debate reached a boiling point following the death of George Floyd on May 25, 2020. At least 160 monuments were removed in 2020 after his death.

Those who support the removal of Confederate statues believe they misrepresent history and glorify people who perpetuated slavery. They are a living reminder of the United States’s painful past and racism.

On the other hand, advocates for statue preservation laws argue that Confederate statues and monuments shouldn’t be removed. Confederate statues represent a part of the country’s history, glorifying those who enabled the suffering of others through slavery. The U.S. Capitol was built using enslaved labor.

A strong argument against these statues is that there are other people who are also part of the country’s history and can be represented in statues instead to foster positive representation and diversity. One example is Ms Bethune. 

Since 2000, states have been able to replace statues of distinguished citizens with new ones, and while many states have done so, this is the first time that one of the additions depicts a Black American in the Statuary Hall collection.

In Ms Bethune’s case, her statue would replace the one of Confederate Gen. Edmund Kirby Smith, which was removed in 2021.

Other statues of Black Americans in the Capitol building include that of Frederick Douglass, Rosa Parks, and Martin Luther King Jr.

The statues representing a state can only be replaced with the approval of the state’s legislature and governor.


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Medicare Facilities Will Perform Abortions To Save a Mother’s Life

If the procedure is life-saving, doctors will perform an abortion despite Roe v. Wade’s overturning


The landmark decision to overturn Roe v. Wade has been a significant setback in women’s fight for health rights, especially considering how this decision set back the movement for nearly fifty years.

Half a century of guaranteed federal constitutional protection of abortion rights evaporated, immediately causing significant distress to women across the United States. 

However, US President Joe Biden signed an executive order Friday directing Health and Human Services to ensure and protect abortion access. Federal law will provide legal defence for physicians facing state prosecution when providing abortions in emergencies. 

This was stated in a letter written by Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra to health care providers on Monday.

Should they refuse to provide abortions in these cases, hospitals could risk having their Medicare provider agreement terminated and face financial penalties. Likewise, physicians who refuse to provide abortions in their private practice could be cut from Medicare.

abortion health care
Health care graphic © Tubik

The US president has also directed the HHS to protect access to contraception and guarantee broad access to the abortion pill, mifepristone. 

In the aftermath of the decision, abortion clinics in several states were closed, leaving women seeking abortions with little choice other than to travel to other states or countries for alternatives. The ruling could even lead to a complete ban on the procedure of abortion in roughly half of US states. It’ll have severe implications for forty million women of child-bearing age living in states where abortion becomes more difficult to access.

The psychological implications of this decision have been mostly overlooked. Having little to no access to safe abortions will probably correlate with a dwindling sex drive in the affected population.

Physicians are required to provide abortions during cases of medical emergency under federal law and will face penalties should they refuse. However, individual states decide when and whether abortions will remain legal, and many states will continue to allow them, even providing options to assist women who live in states that might restrict abortion.

As per The New York Times and the Center for Reproductive Rights, the states most likely to ban abortion include Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

The social and political implications of the overturn of Roe v. Wade are highly concerning for the well-being of women across the US. Seeing the federal government take measures to support them is only the first of many steps to be taken in the fight for women’s health rights.


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US citizens Consider Travelling to Mexico for Abortions

The Overturning of Roe v. Wade Has Created an Uncertain Future for The Constitutional Right to Abortions

Abortion clinics in the United States are closing by the dozen. So, what does the overturning of Roe v, Wade mean for women and what options do American citizens have for abortions after the landmark decision?

After the Roe v. Wade overturn, half of the American states will ban or severely restrict abortion. Roe v. Wade guaranteed federal constitutional protections of abortion rights for American women. But, that doesn’t mean that women who need abortions won’t seek them out alone if the state doesn’t assist them.  

Protesting the right to abortions
Protesting the right to abortions © Getty Images

After the Texas abortion ban in September 2021 women in Texas who wanted abortion began to seek the procedure in other states. As a result, Colorado reported a massive increase in abortions after the abortion ban, serving as a safe space for women seeking abortions throughout the state. 

Abortions are also still considered a right in many countries, including neighbouring Canada and Mexico. Mexico is a particularly popular choice for many US women as treatments and travel are often drastically cheaper. 

While it might seem that seeking an abortion in a neighbouring, less restrictive state or country would be the simple solution to this problem. However, travel is expensive and so are abortions, an issue particularly pertinent to minorities and lower-income women who now might not be able to afford to travel for abortions. This will further the inequality breach between privileged women and non-privileged women. 

Roe v. Wade Protest
US Protests © Miki Jourdan

Removing abortion as a constitutional right and reproductive health right for women means now more than ever women will have to make choices based on their social positions.

This group of privileged women has little concern regarding the consequences of moving abroad for an abortion. On the other hand, the non-privileged group of women, which might include lower-income, racialized, and vulnerable women, face many threats.

And, most importantly, and rather unfortunately, Roe v. Wade being overturned indicated that the US is under a judicial coup, and its political climate doesn’t seem to be fixing itself anytime soon.