Divided government was the big winner both locally and nationally in the midterm elections.
by Steve Baas, Senior VP of Governmental Affairs
On the national front, Democrats claimed a narrow majority in the House of Representatives while Republicans expanded their majority in the US Senate. Since 1900, there have only been two midterm elections where the party in the White House did not lose seats in the Congress. This year was no exception, though the Republicans’ net loss of roughly 25 seats in Congress actually outperformed most recent presidents’ first term midterms - President Reagan (-26); Clinton (- 63); George W. Bush added seats in 2002 the wake of 9/11 terrorist attacks but lost 36 in the 2006 midterm; Obama (-69). Meanwhile, the status quo held in our Wisconsin congressional delegation, with all incumbents winning comfortably and Republican candidate Brian Steil winning the open seat being vacated by Paul Ryan.
On the state level voters, chose Democrats at the top of the ticket, with narrow victories for Tony Evers as Governor and Josh Kaul as Attorney General. Meanwhile, Republicans dominated the down-ballot legislative races, with state Senate Republicans increasing their majority to 19-14 and Assembly Republicans retaining their 64-35 majority in that house. Of special note to MMAC members, all “MMAC Champions of Commerce” – legislators who scored 80% or better on the MMAC Legislative Scorecard – who were on the ballot this fall won their elections.
MMAC extends congratulations to all the winners and our gratitude to all the individuals – winners and losers – who ran for office. Our democratic process is predicated on committed citizens willing to put themselves and their ideas on the line engage in the difficult and demanding arena of a political campaign. Finally, even while we look forward to working with Governor-elect Evers and his incoming administration, we extend our sincerest thanks to Governor Scott Walker for his leadership these past eight years and his crucial role in making so many of our MMAC agenda items for a more prosperous Wisconsin economy a reality.