Republicans hold the upper hand

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Daniel Maibenco

 

It’s no big secret. The main objective of the 2014 mid-term elections is to decide the control of the Senate. This year, though, the senate races are especially close. Voter frustration is more relevant now than it was in 2010.

The Democrats and Republicans are feverishly campaigning to maintain or uproot congressional power. The Democrats are trying to distance themselves from the President because they all uniformly supported his failed policies. The Republicans are offering new, strong, fresh faces as alternatives to these ignorant politicians.

The races in several key states such as Louisiana, Colorado, Iowa, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Virginia, Kansas and Kentucky show the GOP leading the Democrats on several key issues.

For immigration reform, especially in the Border States, no real solution has been implemented to solve this crisis. The recent influx of immigrant children at the border shows how tragic this is. Families are broken up because they are forced to flee from oppressive circumstances. But, they did break the law by being here illegally.

Since no action has been taken, it makes many politicians, especially Obama, seem indifferent to this mess. The President refused to address this problem at the border, even when he was personally invited to do so by Rick Perry, Governor of Texas. Many voted for Obama in 2012, hoping for immigration reform. Since Obama made immigration reform a campaign promise and has failed to deliver after six years, this may hurt Democrats looking for support from Hispanic voters.

Another issue is foreign policy. Everyone can see how ISIS has grown from obscurity to a global threat to peace. ISIS would not have cemented its presence in Iraq if Obama did not pull all of the U.S. forces out of that country.

While the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were unpopular, they did deter terror threats. Still, Obama and the Democrats championed the complete withdrawal of troops out of Iraq. Now, with no U.S. presence in this region, the democracy and territory the U.S. military helped secure has now been for naught. The Republicans are using this national security catastrophe to their advantage in showing how rational and practical our leaders have to be.

Gender Inequality is another important, yet surprising, subject for the midterms. For decades, Democrats have been seen as the champions of women’s rights and have gotten the majority of their votes. Now, Republicans are pulling ahead among women voters.

This is the first time that this has ever happened. In key electoral states, namely Iowa, women are siding with the Republicans on major issues. The weakening of the gender gap is a disaster for the Democrats.  They are depending on women votes to help maintain power. More importantly, if more women vote Republican in this election, then gender inequality will no longer be a staple for the Democrats.

Yet, the most important issue of the midterms is the Affordable Care Act. All the Democrats in the Senate voted for this and supported the false notion: “If you like your current healthcare plan, you can keep it. Period.” Millions of people had their healthcare plans cancelled last year due to new regulations and mandates.

As a result of this new law, many businesses were forced to reduce worker’s hours from full-time to part-time. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projects that at least 2.3 million jobs will be lost by 2021 due to Obamacare and that economic growth may stifle in 2016. For Republicans, this is an easy issue. None of them voted for this plan and pointed out (years in advance) that more people would lose their healthcare coverage than gain it.

That is exactly what happened and now the Republicans are trying to hold the Democrats accountable for this failed policy.

Overall, the midterms will be interesting. To me, it is more than seeing which negative ad is the most successful. The midterms will show if rational thinking and common sense will prevail. If politicians vote for and support bad policies, they must be held accountable. If congressmen or congresswomen only focus on maintaining cushy jobs over improving the public good, they must be voted out.

The control of the Senate will shift to the Republicans because this year’s elections are not just about the candidates, they are a referendum on Obama’s failed agenda.