The 2018 Midterms Game Day Thread of Angst, Worry, (and maybe some hope?)


I find it odd how everyone is trying to call this election a win for the Democrats, or a win for the Republicans. It’s also dangerous thinking.

The GOP won by holding the Senate. Yes, it was an easy win, and they didn’t cover, but it was a win. The Dems won by taking the House, in an historic wave. They covered and more.

Yes, it portends well for the Democrats, but in reality, both sides won in this election, and while the country would likely be better off if the Dems had also taken the Senate, it’s also something our politics need more of - a win- win situation. We need less zero sum politics.


Yes, we can compromise now. Only some brown children get caged. Win-win.


“The GOP won the Senate and the Democrats won the House” is not “win-win”. It’s simply splitting one zero sum calculation into two zero sum calculations.


Fair point on the two party share, and yes the Republican, had an unfair advantage by being in control of state legislators for a long time. Looking at some 20th century elections I don’t think it would be as high as 260 closer to 240. But as you say there isn’t a way of calculating it.

But more importantly I don’t think there ever was a period in American history were congressional districts were fair(or probably Parliamentary districts in the UK). Look at the MA district of 1812 that produced the name, it is not close to being a rectangle shape. The science of Gerrymander is better now than earlier years but the intention was always to give one party and edge. Gerrymander works best in close elections 51-52%, in purple state but at some point it backfires. We came very close to that in this election and argue we saw that in Orange County, CA.


That’s not what I said! It would be easy to calculate, but I’m not invested enough in this discussion to go and dig for the raw data :)

Here’s a random image search result for congress popular vote vs. seats (chosen just since they tried fitting the theoretically proper curve on it rather than a straight line):

It would be nice to have the exact numbers instead of just reading a graph, but it’s clear that the intercept for 54% popular vote is somewhere in the range of 59-60% of the seats.

But you’re just repeating the same mistake here as in the original post. You can’t use these elections as an example of “Gerrymandering works until it doesn’t” since Gerrymandering didn’t backfire. It won the Republicans 25 seats more than they should have expected.


That chart only includes data from 1972. Gerrymandering has been going on since 1810. I looked at dozen races in since 1900, which is as much time as wanted to put into the discussion. I didn’t find the chart you linked, I’d be interested in one that covered all of the elections.


Then again, 51% of the seats gives a party 100% of the committee chairs.


One of the Pod Save America guys said he would be pissed if it was called a ‘split decision’ because when the 2010 election occurred, with Dems losing the house but retaining the Senate, the mainstream media called it a clear loss for the Dems, a ‘rebuke’ and so forth. (That was the one that Obama called a ‘shellacking.’) How we label this election gets into old bugaboos about the way the media frames politics.


Trump said it was a win for Republicans. Trump always lies therefore it must be loss. I know there will be a few times that Trump will tell the truth, but in general assuming that whatever he says is wrong, is right, is the best strategy.


A sound epistemological framework.


While parliamentary districts in the UK are not “fair” (look at the 2005 English GE results to see how unfair they can be) they are certainly not gerrymandered. Sometimes just lining the districts up in a way that makes sense will produce an apparently distorted result because of different turnout rates and party-voter concentrations in different areas.


I think it’s fair to assume that any time power is on the line, someone is doing their level best to rig it somewhere.



I thought the same, and still do, frankly.

But she’s conceded now, so…hey. It is what it is.


Wait, so Mia Love was oblivious to Trump’s nature for the past 3 years, but after he publicly dissed her, she saw the light?


She was also astonished to discover that there was gambling going on at this establishment.


For all of you on twitter, I implore you to mute the words “Ted Cruz grew a beard” before venturing onto your feed.


OMG too late! My eyes, they burn!


It’s a fucking horror show.


How could covering up that face make it worse?