Home PoliticsAfrica News Biden world feels relief, and vindication, as election results roll in A White House that faced a bunch of second guessing gets to say: We told you so.

Biden world feels relief, and vindication, as election results roll in A White House that faced a bunch of second guessing gets to say: We told you so.

by AfroWorldNews

Joe Biden’s aides and close allies were crowing Wednesday morning. They had defied overwhelming expectations of a red wave washing across the country and exceeded their most optimistic predictions about the midterms.
And, once more, they were especially eager to remind naysayers that the president had been wrongly underestimated and counted out time after time before.
As election results trickled in, the feeling inside the White House turned from encouragement to relief to an unmistakable sense of vindication, even as the practical realities of losing the House — albeit by far narrower margins than most believed — continued to settle in.
Biden’s aides had spent days leading up to the election trying to tamp down expectations, going as far as promising that the president wouldn’t suffer anything like the hemorrhaging of House seats that his recent predecessors did. Democrats close to the White House insisted that pundits, including many within their party, were wrong in their criticism that the president didn’t properly balance his message around the economic pains of inflation with threats to democracy and protecting abortion rights.
But even officials inside the administration acknowledged that they didn’t expect Democrats to keep things as close as they did in the House while pulling off so many other key wins down-ballot, according to officials and others in close touch with the White House.
“To see it all play out was just a huge relief to the White House,” said Democratic strategist Adrienne Elrod. “And, again, validation that President Biden’s policies, which are popular, actually turned into votes to keep more Democrats in office.”
The Senate majority appeared to rest on Nevada and a likely runoff in Georgia. But administration officials and their allies viewed the results as validation of Biden’s policy successes and his bet that focusing broadly on Republican extremism would help repel voters, despite Democrats in many of the toughest races seeking distance from the president and vice president themselves.
“What was true in 2020 is also true in 2022 — that voters are looking for normalcy and for their representatives to restore the rule of law, respect our democracy and address the problems that are plaguing them on a daily basis, like high costs and infringements on their rights. And that’s what President Biden and the Democrats have done,” said Stephanie Cutter, a longtime Democratic operative. “The historical winds always meant that there would be losses, but the red wave that everybody predicted was blunted because of sound policy and respect for our institutions.”
For others, the moment recalled Biden rising from the political grave in the 2020 midterms and later seeing his legislative agenda — including massive spending plans — resuscitated and ultimately passed through Congress.
The surprising results represented one of the best midterm elections for a party in power in nearly a century. Yet while it gave the White House a considerable psychological and political boost, it doesn’t exhaust the questions the president and his team face. For starters, the House is still likely to fall to Republicans, forcing the administration to greatly curtail its ambitions. And losing the Senate, even by the narrowest of margins, would stymie their ability to nominate judges and other crucial appointees.
Beyond that, Biden’s own political future remains deeply uncertain. The president spent the close of the midterm largely campaigning in deep blue enclaves and staying away from most of the tight races that broke his way, or still may. Instead, he raised money behind the scenes or held official events — sometimes at the insistence of Democratic campaigns who feared his presence alongside them at rallies — and tried to steer the national narrative with a series of speeches from Washington. Biden, who is about to turn 80, will have to make a choice about whether to run again for office. Allies say they expect Tuesday’s results to embolden his belief that he deserves a second term.
“He has every reason in the world to run again,” Elrod said. “And there are a lot of Democrats waking up today — and not just Democrats by the way, independents — who are saying, ‘I hope he runs again, because look at the night that we had.’”
Biden began watching the election unfold from the residence, before moving onto the Roosevelt room where he was joined by his advisers. He then retired to the dining room of the complex to make a battery of congratulatory calls, finishing up with an early morning text to Pennsylvania’s John Fetterman, who bested TV celebrity Mehmet Oz in a state that emerged as an early proxy war between Biden and former President Donald Trump.
Among officials and close allies, the history defying midterms were internalized as a repudiation of Trump and his movement, which despite Biden’s unpopularity, stubbornly high inflation and rising fear over crime, faltered in many of the places the White House holds dearest. Along with a number of suburban House districts that were prioritized by administration and party officials, they were especially heartened by big wins in Rust Belt gubernatorial races — states that will again be crucial to hold in 2024.
It has been exactly a half century since Biden entered politics and the midterms threatened to severely weaken the president’s standing. Advisers have insisted that Biden, who has said he intends to seek reelection, wouldn’t be swayed one way or another by the November outcomes. But Democrats said they anticipated a war on the right over how much blame Trump should receive, which would in turn relieve some of the pressure on Biden that would have boiled over had the races served as a referendum on the current president rather than the latter.
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