Who won the 2022 elections?


Where the numbers stand: A few weeks back, we took a preliminary look at the nationwide numbers from the 2022 House elections.

By now, the votes are pretty much counted. Here's the way the numbers look at the Cook Report:

November 2022 House elections:
Total votes cast: 107.6 million
Votes for Republican candidates: 54.5 million (50.6%)
Votes for Democratic candidates: 51.4 million (47.8%)

Republicans narrowly won the House. Nationwide, Democratic candidates were outvoted by almost three points.

Several points should be made concerning those nationwide numbers:

As we noted way back when, Democrats got zero votes in certain districts because there was no Democratic candidate on the ballot. For example:

As you can see on the Cook Report map, there was no Democratic candidate in the race for North Dakota's one "at-large" House seat. The same is true of the race for South Dakota's one House seat.

For those reasons, there were no Democratic votes in the Dakotas this year. There were no Democratic votes because there were no Democratic candidates!

Down in Texas, there were no Democratic candidates in six contiguous districts stretching almost across the state (Districts 19, 25, 26, 31, 06, 11). It's also true that there were no Democratic candidates—and therefore, no Democratic votes—in certain other districts across the vast U.S.

That said:

In California, Adam Schiff was re-elected in District 30 in the face of zero Republican votes. So was Anna Eshoo in District 16. (California's relatively new "jungle primary" system helps explain this state of affairs.)

This sort of thing undermines the usefulness of the nationwide two-party vote as a measure of national political sentiment. On the other hand:

It has long been assumed that the party holding the White House will do more poorly in midterm elections, especially in a president's first midterm election. On that basis, and given problems with inflation, it was sometimes assumed that Republican turnout would swamp Democratic turnout this time around.

That didn't exactly happen. We'd say that the presence of Donald J. Trump in the nation's political life has changed a lot of long-standing assumptions and rules of thumb. That's reflected in the relatively high number of people who turned out, from both parties, in these midterm elections.


Obama's midterm elections took place in 2010 and 2014. In those two years, total midterm turnout stood at 86.8 and 78.2 million voters.

Then, along came The Age of Trump. Total turnout in the 2018 and 2022 midterms stood at 113.4 and 107.6 million voters.

Large numbers of people still don't vote. But in this, The Age of Donald J. Trump, the tide on the river has risen.

Final point:

In this, The Age of Donald J. Trump, Republicans were still able to win the House—except on blue tribe cable news programs, where the outcome of the 2022 House elections is often described as a "win." 

On cable, we're still told that we won. Ain't news by silo grand?


  1. Somerby focuses on the Republican tide rising, but the Democratic tide also rose with younger voters and especially women opposed to the SC's decision on abortion. Many of those women were newly registered voters.

    If you were to read nothing but Somerby about the midterm, you would get the impression that Democrats did poorly and are underdogs, but that is far from the case. Democrats hold both the presidency and the Senate due to extraordinary efforts on the ground by Democrats.

    There is no reason why Democrats should run a losing candidate in North Dakota, just so that the nationwide tally of Dem vs Repub voters will be more even. It is a waste of everyone's money and time. Adam Frisch ran in such a district against Boebert, who is as bad as a rep gets, and even still he narrowly lost, with a Herculean effort running against a moron. Republicans voted party line and even the combined mass of Independents and Democrats in Boebert's rural red district, couldn't boot her out of office.

    So what is Somerby say? Nothing that makes any sense. There is a movement to get blue voters to move to solid red districts and states, but obviously, it is very difficult to get anyone to do that when their primary consideration must be job, family and quality of life issues. I wouldn't do it and I care a lot about politics. So, failing that, there is little more that Dems can do.

    I think we need to recognize our successes, even when some buffoon like Somerby frames them as losses, and we need to continue doing what we can strategically, not by diluting resources to address races in North Dakota. With this, Somerby is either making a joke or actively trying to harm Dem prospects by suggesting ineffective choices. I believe it is most likely the latter, taking Somerby's essay today in the context of his other opinions.

    And no, being nice to The Others doesn't change how they vote.

    1. As a MSNBC watcher, I never
      had the impression that the Dems
      won beyond the context Bob
      admits. They have not played
      up the total vote tally, as Bob
      would freely ignore it were
      the parties reversed. (He saw
      no reason to ever care about
      The Republican Electoral
      College wins so central to
      or recent history.
      Indeed, Trump did change
      things. He is still attempting to
      overthrow the Country.
      This makes Bob’s dry account
      of the Election stupid and

    2. For the record the Dems were
      also supposed to pay the price
      for the bloody and tragic withdrawal
      From Afghanistan. Didn’t happen.

    3. “And no, being nice to The Others doesn't change how they vote.”

      It truly will not.

      Democrats are not able to be nice in a way that helps you and us.

      We are at loggerheads. No changing that.

    4. The Democrats help the citizens of the United States of America vote. It's one of the biggest political divides between the parties (in a representative democracy).


  2. "This sort of thing undermines the usefulness of the nationwide two-party vote as a measure of national political sentiment. "

    Duh. Kudos, Captain Obvious.
    ...except that it's not just "this sort of thing". In the most competitive election, where one side gets 50%+1, the votes of the other half are wasted. Which, arguably, "undermines the usefulness" even more.

    Anyhow, could we, perhaps, drop this nonsense, and Tucker Carlson's horrible sin of stating the obvious, and talk about something less significant?

    This, for example:
    "...the Biden administration’s unclassified Nuclear Posture Review (NPR) is, at heart, a terrifying document. It not only keeps the world on a path of increasing nuclear risk, in many ways it increases that risk. Citing rising threats from Russia and China, it argues that the only viable U.S. response is to rebuild the entire U.S. nuclear arsenal, maintain an array of dangerous Cold War-era nuclear policies, and threaten the first use of nuclear weapons in a variety of scenarios."

    ...just a suggestion; a humble suggestion...

    1. Mao,
      This sounds like something everyone but a Republican voter might care about.

    2. The great thing about talking about public policy is that you don't have to waste time with Republican voters, because that's something they don't know/ care enough about.

    3. And a stupid suggestion from a
      pathetic idiot.

    4. This is how Mao reveals that he’s a Russian, and not a Republican.

      However, he is right about the nuclear posture review. Russians aren’t always wrong about everything.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. An election post-mortem by a petulant child pretending to be an adult.

  5. "In this, The Age of Donald J. Trump, Republicans were still able to win the House—except on blue tribe cable news programs, where the outcome of the 2022 House elections is often described as a "win."

    In a midterm election, not all offices are up for vote. Senators are elected every 6 years, with a rotation so that different senators come up for vote every 2 years. That means that there are differences between the two parties in how many uncumbents and vulnerable seats are up for vote in any given election period. It happens that the Republicans had more safe votes than the Democrats in this particular midterm. To increase our margin in the Senate under such conditions is indeed a win.

    Second, Somerby never discusses the impact of redistricting on Democrats. The Republicans managed to gerrymander more safe seats for themselves in the House. Some analysts attribute the Republican take-back of the House entirely to that outcome, which is the result of the recent census results and the capture of state legislatures by Republicans. Some of the more extreme examples of racial and political gerrymandering were successfully challenged in the courts, but not all plans were overturned, leaving the Republicans with a built-in advantage beyond voting results. Somerby never talks about this, except to defend Republican gerrymanders and object to Democratic complaints about racial gerrymandering. Now, he is mum about the impact on the House elections.

    Despite this, Democrats held the Republicans in the House to a slim margin. They will have trouble achieving party discipline with their own Republican factionalism, so it seems unlikely Republican will be able to make hay without a strong leader, and they do not have that. So, this is a good outcome for Democrats -- not as good as winning, but that was not achievable under the circumstances -- something Somerby does not mention. But this is why this too is a sort of win for Democrats, especially given how bad it could have been had a Republican "wave" actually materialised.

    So, why is Somerby's analysis so biased against Democrats? Somerby is trying to claim that the media have it wrong and he is right, but that is only when an uneducated person looks at the absolute numbers and sees that the Republican total national vote is bigger than the Democratic vote. It makes no sense to argue that given the actual outcomes in the context of political history. But Somerby doesn't do context -- especially when it conflicts with his preferred narrative, which is that Democrats suck.

    Don't trust Somerby when he talks about numbers.

    1. "Don't trust Somerby when he talks about numbers."

      Basic arithmetic and economics are kryptonite to most Righties.

  6. Another step toward making Twitter a partisan element in the right wing noise machine:

    "“Twitter suspended the accounts of roughly half a dozen journalists on Thursday, the latest change by the social media service under its new owner, Elon Musk,” the New York Times reports.

    “The accounts suspended included Ryan Mac of The New York Times; Drew Harwell of The Washington Post; Aaron Rupar, an independent journalist; Donie O’Sullivan of CNN; Matt Binder of Mashable; Tony Webster, an independent journalist; and the political journalist Keith Olbermann. It was unclear what the suspensions had in common; each user’s Twitter page included a message that said it was suspended for ‘violating the Twitter rules.'”

    1. Elon Musk would epitomize the Republican Party, if he was even less of a supporter of free speech.

  7. “This sort of thing undermines the usefulness of the nationwide two-party vote as a measure of national political sentiment.”

    He recognizes this, yet still feels the need to keep repeating how the Republicans won a larger share of the House vote. It helps him pretend to prove that “nobody likes us.”

    1. It’s basically Bill Maher’s shtick:
      But they really hate you.
      Yeah I get it.
      They are really into hate.

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