What are the Midterm Elections?
Midterm elections are elections that take place during
the midpoint of a four-year presidential term. Along with
numerous local races, 36 out of 50 states elect their
governors, and each of the 435 seats in the House of
Representatives and 33-34 of the 100 seats in the Senate
are on the ballot. While midterm elections are vitally
important, turnout during midterms is historically low—
largely due to the Presidential race not being on the ballot.
As local candidates and elected officials begin to campaign for your vote in the 2022 midterms, it is important to remember how critical these elections are. Many local positions that directly affect our daily lives, like state legislators and city council, are on the ballot. These are largely the officials who craft laws governing local law enforcement, your local and statewide education budget, and how much you pay for rent and property taxes. In many states, state legislators also draw Congressional Districts after each Census. This oftentimes leads to partisan gerrymandering that disproportionately affects communities of color.
But also on the ballot are critical federal races. Currently, the Senate is split evenly, leaving Vice President Harris as the deciding vote for tiebreakers. Democrats in the House are holding on to the majority by a slim margin of 220 to 211. The issues and policies that our community has prioritized—voting rights, improving the economy, better health care, criminal justice reform, climate change— all must pass through the U.S. Congress. We have an opportunity in the midterms to elect leaders who can move our agenda, protect our democracy, and push this country
toward a future grounded in justice and equity.