Purely Political, By James Buckley
We are now less than a month away from the 2022 national election, and the results of those races should be a positive for the stock market — and the country.
When Congress reconvenes in January 2023, I feel confident there will be a Republican majority in the House of Representatives, with a pick up of probably 22 to as many as 40 seats if a real Red Wave takes hold. And a Republican-led Senate is a distinct probability.
The latest Gallup Poll (Sept. 1-16) has respondents choosing the Republican Party over the Democratic Party 48% to 37% as the party than can do a better job of dealing with what those polled see as the most important issues: the high cost of living/inflation, the economy in general, poor government leadership, immigration and race relations.
Democrats are scrambling to alter that impression and with the help of a more-than compliant media the party has been somewhat successful turning voters’ attention to abortion and … Donald Trump.
But as I see it, not nearly enough minds have or will re-focus away from the battered economy and poor leadership in the White House to make much of a dent in the likely outcome.
Based upon everything I’m reading, viewing, listening to, hearing and taking in, the following is how — as I see it — this election will go.
First, a rundown of all the U.S. Senate races, with the first name being Republican and the second Democrat, along with my guess at the odds of what I predict will happen:
Nevada: Adam Laxalt beats Sen. Cortez Masto (52/48).
Georgia: Herschel Walker ousts Raphael Warnock (52/48).
Wisconsin: Sen. Ron Johnson over Mandela Barnes (60/40).
North Carolina: Rep. Ted Budd squeezes out a victory over Cheri Beasley (51/49).
Ohio: J.D. Vance takes out Tim Ryan (55/45).
Pennsylvania: Dr. Mehmet Oz wins over John Fetterman (51/49).
Arizona: Blake Masters beats Sen. Mark Kelly (50/50).
New Hampshire: Ron Bolduc loses to Maggie Hassan (48/52).
Florida: Sen. Marco Rubio easily defeats Val Demings (56/44).
Colorado: Democratic Sen Michael Bennet wins hands down in the race with Republican Joe O’Dea.
Utah: Sen. Mike Lee wipes the floor with Evan McMullin (70/30).
Washington: Tiffany Smiley has a fighting chance to overtake Sen. Patty Murray (49/51).
Indiana: Sen. Ted Young beats Tom McDermott (70/30).
Missouri: Eric Schmitt wins easily over Trudy Busch Valentine (70/30).
Iowa: Sen. Chuck Grassley beats Mike Franken (60/40).
Connecticut: Wish it could be otherwise, but Leora Levy loses to Sen. Richard Blumenthal (47/53).
Kansas: Stays red as Sen. Jerry Moran beats Mark Holland (80/20).
Illinois: Another state that needs help but looks like Kathy Salvi loses to Sen. Tammy Duckworth (47/53).
Oregon: Republicans making progress, but Jo Rae Perkins loses to Wyden (47/53).
Louisiana, Kentucky, South Carolina, Arkansas, Alabama, Idaho, Oklahoma (2 seats up here), South Dakota, North Dakota, and Alaska remain in the Red (Republican) Zone
California, Vermont, New York, Maryland and Hawaii sadly remain deep blue.
The count is 24 Republican senators in the winning column, versus 10 Democrat victors and one undecided.
This scenario has Republicans beating three Democrat incumbents (Cortez Masto in Nevada, Warnock in Georgia and Kelly in Arizona). Republicans also win 8 seats with no incumbent but all of which lean heavily Republican and hold on to the rest of their current seats, which have little or no competition.
If any semblance of this prediction holds, Republicans will come out of the 2022 election season with a 53/47 majority in the Senate and if the toss-up goes against Murray in Washington, a 54/46 split. If things go badly for Republicans, it is possible Democrats hang on to a 50/50 Senate, but as a betting man, I’m going with the momentum play, which favors Republicans.
As a former president often remarks, we’ll see what happens.
James Buckley is a longtime Montecito resident. He welcomes questions or comments at firstname.lastname@example.org. Readers are invited to visit jimb.substack.com, where Jim’s Journals are on file. He also invites people to subscribe to Jim’s Journal.