Vertiv Introduces New Single-Phase Uninterruptible Power Supply for Distributed Information Technology (IT) Networks and Edge Computing Applications in Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA)Read more Students from JA Zimbabwe Win 2023 De La Vega Global Entrepreneurship AwardRead more Top International Prospects to Travel to Salt Lake City for Seventh Annual Basketball Without Borders Global CampRead more Rise of the Robots as Saudi Arabia Underscores Global Data and Artificial Intelligence (AI) Aspirations with DeepFest Debut at LEAP23Read more Somalia: ‘I sold the last three goats, they were likely to die’Read more Merck Foundation and African First Ladies marking World Cancer Day 2023 through 110 scholarships of Oncology Fellowships in 25 countriesRead more Supporting women leaders and aspirants to unleash their potentialRead more Fake medicines kill almost 500,000 sub-Saharan Africans a year: United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) reportRead more Climate crisis and migration: Greta Thunberg supports International Organization for Migration (IOM) over ‘life and death’ issueRead more United Nations (UN) Convenes Lake Chad Countries, Amid Growing Regional CrisisRead more

Biden campaigns in Pennsylvania, ground zero for midterms

show caption
US President Joe Biden will visit both Pittsburgh and Philadelphia./AFP
Print Friendly and PDF

Oct 20, 2022 - 07:18 AM

WASHINGTON — US President Joe Biden will campaign Thursday alongside Senate candidate John Fetterman in Pennsylvania, ground zero in the Democrats’ struggle to avoid a wipeout in the midterms — and two years of political trench warfare for the White House.

Biden will visit both Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, touting his administration’s signature infrastructure spending package.

Fetterman, whose love of hoodies and cargo shorts makes him one of the most unusual-looking figures on the campaign trail, was once a runaway favorite in the battle against Republican candidate Mehmet Oz, a celebrity doctor.

But the race has tightened, reflecting sinking Democratic hopes of maintaining the party’s already fragile control of Congress. The latest average of polls shows Fetterman’s nearly 11-point lead in mid-September whittled down to about five points.

Analysts say Pennsylvania is among a handful of races Democrats must win to keep the Senate after November 8, while the tussle for the House is even tougher.

Biden’s attempts to shift momentum have so far had limited effect. He is also unpopular, with an average of 42.3 percent in approval ratings, so his campaign appearances may not help.

The Thursday trip follows speeches in Washington where Biden vowed to protect abortion access and called for lower energy prices.

But three weeks from voting day, Americans appear to be veering toward the Republican message.

That raises the likelihood of Republicans taking control of at least the House and quite possibly the Senate.

Even just the House would give the increasingly far-right Republican party the ability to shut down Biden’s agenda and — as prominent figures are already threatening — attempt impeachment.

Numbers don’t add up 

A New York Times/Siena poll this week showed that, of likely voters, 26 percent named worries over the economy as the top issue while 18 percent listed inflation, which is at its highest rate in four decades.

That is not something Biden can fix quickly. This week also saw Bloomberg’s latest probability model giving a 100 percent chance of a recession in the next 12 months.

Even on issues where Biden feels he has a winning hand, there are limits.

During his impassioned speech on abortion, the president tapped into widespread anger over the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn the half-century-old Roe v. Wade ruling that enshrined national abortion rights.

Predicting a revolt by women voters at the ballot box, Biden said Republicans “ain’t seen nothing yet.”

But the Siena poll does not bear that out: just five percent of likely voters named abortion as their top issue.

Parties controlling the White House nearly always suffer a loss of seats in Congress during midterms, so a heavy Democratic loss would be no surprise.

Analysts with Larry Sabato’s Crystal Ball election newsletter at the University of Virginia said that after giddy hopes of somehow defying gravity, the Democrats seem to be coming back to earth.

“The usual midterm headwinds remain for Democrats. It’s just tough for a party to thrive with an unpopular president and with the public having significant concerns about issues, like the economy and inflation,” they said Wednesday.

“This is why the House remains very likely to flip to the Republicans and why, despite the aforementioned challenges, Republican chances to win the Senate remain no worse than a coin flip.”

MAORANDCITIES.COM uses both Facebook and Disqus comment systems to make it easier for you to contribute. We encourage all readers to share their views on our articles and blog posts. All comments should be relevant to the topic. By posting, you agree to our Privacy Policy. We are committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion, so we ask you to avoid personal attacks, name-calling, foul language or other inappropriate behavior. Please keep your comments relevant and respectful. By leaving the ‘Post to Facebook’ box selected – when using Facebook comment system – your comment will be published to your Facebook profile in addition to the space below. If you encounter a comment that is abusive, click the “X” in the upper right corner of the Facebook comment box to report spam or abuse. You can also email us.