An array of Democrats pleaded with President Biden to address the quality-of-life issues that plagued their candidates in elections on Tuesday.
Although they had braced for a close race for Virginia governor, Democrats were caught off guard by the intensity of the backlash against their party in major off-year elections. Republicans claimed all three statewide offices in Virginia, will likely take control of the state’s House of Delegates and came close to upsetting Gov. Phil Murphy of New Jersey, whose re-election had been presumed safe by officials in both parties.
Just as jarring for Democrats were some of the less prominent contests: The powerful New Jersey State Senate president, Steve Sweeney, was trailing a truck driver who ran a shoestring campaign; a Latino Republican flipped a Democratic seat in South San Antonio; and Democrats were thrashed in local races across Long Island.
The scope of the party’s setbacks illustrated that voters were fatigued from the demands of the still-continuing coronavirus pandemic and angry about the soaring prices and scarcity of goods they were confronting every day. While Democrats’ strength in cities and some large suburbs saved them from even deeper losses, their electoral coalition showed signs of fraying as voters vented their unhappiness with the party in power.
Responding to Tuesday’s results like an alarm bell in the night, Democrats on the ballot next year said that unless Mr. Biden and other party leaders addressed voters’ close-to-home frustrations, they were certain to lose their congressional majorities.
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