Just over a week after the vote in the midterm elections in the United States, the Republican Party took control of the House of Representatives following the announcement, Wednesday, November 16, of the victory of Mike Garcia in the 27e district of California, giving the Grand Old Party a 218e seat synonymous with a majority in the lower house.
This result confirms the political fracture of the country since the Democratic Party managed to keep its majority in the Senatethe other chamber of the US Congress.
Pending the end of the recounts, seven seats in the House of Representatives have not yet been allocated: five in California – including one guaranteed to the Democrats – one in Colorado and one in Alaska.
However, even if it grants itself the power to block Joe Biden’s policy until 2024, the right-wing party will only have, after the complete count of all the districts, a narrow majority, far from the “giant wave” promised by Donald Trump.
“The era of Democratic domination is over”
This very thin Republican majority in the lower house also risks significantly complicating its governance. The party’s House leader, Kevin McCarthy, was nominated by his peers on Tuesday to run for president to replace Nancy Pelosi, but his political future will hinge on a perilous election in January 2023.
“The era of Democratic domination is over”he has however already warned. “Americans are ready for a new direction, and House Republicans are ready to act,” he tweeted on Wednesday.
With a Republican House and a Democratic Senate, Joe Biden’s party will not be able to push through new big plans. But neither are its rivals. However, the Republicans had threatened to unravel certain measures adopted under Joe Biden if they regained control of the two chambers. They wanted in particular to reconsider the funds allocated to the tax services to hire new agents, or on certain reforms in the world of education.
Joe Biden’s outstretched hand
They had also planned to attack the right to abortion or to legislate on firearms, which would have pushed Joe Biden to use his right of veto. The American president, who congratulated the Republicans for their victory of the day, will not ultimately be forced to camp on this defensive posture. And will on the contrary have to use his negotiating skills, inherited from his long career as a senator, in particular to avoid a paralysis of the federal administration (the “shutdown”).
“I will work with anyone – Republicans or Democrats – willing to work with me to take action”he said in a statement after the Republican victory was announced.
But the president’s outstretched hand risks coming up against a red wall, the color of the Republicans. Even with a slim majority in the House, the latter will have substantial oversight power, which they have promised to use for a host of investigations into Joe Biden’s handling of the pandemic or the withdrawal of Afghanistan. They could also go after his son Hunter, accused of using his name to do business in Ukraine and China.
The party intends to exploit any potential Democratic flaw, keeping the 2024 presidential election in sight. And with his declaration of candidacyTuesday, Donald Trump launched a merciless fight for the nomination.