A Rundown of Local and National Midterm Results


Kaleigha Arrington

As midterms hang in the balance, the power of each party does as well. Infographic created by Kaleigha Arrington using Canva.

Jacob Johnson, Writer

As votes continue to be counted in the coming days, a more detailed picture of Congress’ political landscape after the results of the midterm election reveals itself. Issues said to determine the sway of votes included plans to address inflation, abortion rights, handling of student debt, and decisions surrounding Ukraine.

The congressional race with Virginia’s toss-up 7th district, Putting Abigail Spanberger up against Yesli Vega, was a particular race that a lot of people were invested in, with Virginia getting record early voting numbers compared to previous midterms.

This investment was seen clearly through an abundance of political advertisements. “I saw a lot of Abigail Spanberger ads, they were on almost every video,” Eric Nielsen (’23) stated. “On rare occasions, there were Yesli Vega ads that looked like they had a lower budget, or that they were produced by her supporters.”

As campaign efforts heated up near the end of the election season, projections for the race were tight, with the results anticipated to be pivotal in which political party would have more power in Congress, especially considering Virginia’s reputation as a swing state.

Ultimately, the incumbent Democratic candidate, Abigail Spanberger proved victorious over her opponent, Yesli Vega, by a small margin into early Wednesday morning.

Plans for her moving into her third term include the support of small businesses and agricultural businesses alike, as well as expanding access to healthcare and strengthening funding in local police departments.

Her relationship with the police has led to her coming under fire in the past, facing criticism for being inconsistent in renouncing progressive ideas such as the defunding of police while simultaneously giving and receiving support from people and organizations that endorsed the rhetoric.

Being an incumbent politician, Spanberger is more likely to be evaluated on her ability to fulfill any promises or pledges asserted in previous campaigns. Maintaining a solid track record is a significant factor for candidates who have served in public office in the past.

Challenging Spanberger was Republican candidate Yesli Vega. Vega had been able to secure a name for herself, landing a Trump endorsement just weeks prior.

She intended to place more checks and balances on the Biden Administration as well as reinforcement of security at the borders. Other issues include bringing the current down-turning economy back to its more stable conditions pre-lockdown, as well as placing more precautions in the election process.

Sentiments surrounding election reform have grown extremely popular among many Republican voters and politicians in the nearly two years following the highly disputed victory of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris in the 2020 election. She also plans to support former President Donald Trump in his expected 2024 reelection bid.

There are other noteworthy victories in this year’s midterms, including the first House of Representatives member to be part of Generation Z, Maxwell Frost. As sentiments expressing concern for the government’s unprecedented number of older citizens in office continue to rise, having someone in government at the more youthful age of 25 can be seen as a sign of progress to many younger voters and citizens.

“It is cool, there should be more youth participation in government, and I’m glad to see it’s happening more,” Eric Nielsen (’23) said. “I want to see it continue as a trend for all ages to be heard in the House, and just the Federal government overall.” 

It is cool, there should be more youth participation in government, and I’m glad to see it’s happening more. […] I want to see it continue as a trend for all ages to be heard in the House, and just the Federal government overall.

— Eric Nielsen ('23)

The race for the Alaskan Senate is also one of note. With neither Democratic candidate Raphael Warnock nor Republican candidate Herschell Walker being able to crack above the 50% needed to secure a win, the race will continue forward to the runoffs, taking place a couple of months later on December 6.

Many Republicans were also anticipating a Red Wave. These anticipations, however, have been squashed, as there is very little massive Republican overturning in the government from the results of this election so far.

The Democratic party is showing signs of a comeback for control in Congress, although still up in the air and relatively tied between both parties, with multiple key state races for the Senate, the House, and Governor still being wrapped up and yet to be called.