Supreme Court Fight Sharpens the Stakes for Midterms

The bitter battle over Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court has exacerbated the nation’s political divide and left many Americans emotionally raw. It’s also given new definition to the high stakes of November’s election.Until now, the fight for control of Congress has largely been viewed as a referendum on President Donald Trump’s first two years in office. But the turmoil surrounding Kavanaugh has transformed the midterms into something bigger than Trump, with implications that could endure long after his presidency.

The election is suddenly layered with charged cultural questions about the scarcity of women in political power, the handling of sexual assault allegations, and shifting power dynamics that have left some white men uneasy about their place in American life.

Both parties contend the new contours of the race will energize their supporters in the election’s final stretch. Both may be right.

Republicans, however, may benefit most in the short term. Until now, party leaders, Trump included, have struggled to rev up GOP voters, even with a strong economy to campaign on. The president’s middling job approval rating and independent voters’ disdain for his constant personal attacks have been a drag on GOP candidates, particularly in the more moderate suburban districts that will determine control of the House.

 Read more at Real Clear Politics

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