More power for Democrats - Trump under the gun?

In the US midterm elections the Democrats have won a majority in the House of Representatives. The Republicans, for their part, have secured more seats in the Senate. Journalists discuss the impact this new balance of power could have on policies.

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Die Presse (AT) /

Now come feuding and demagogy

After the midterms both camps will continue on the path of confrontation, Die Presse fears:

“It'll get tough and ugly. The upcoming summary by Special Counsel Robert Mueller on the Trump team's so-called Russia connection will degenerate into a feud, with calls for impeachment proceedings against the president. For their part the Democrats, bolstered by their victory in the House of Representatives, are facing a long presidential candidate selection process entailing a phase of the party redefining itself between the moderate and progressive wing and the profiling of its protagonists. There's no lack of promising figures and shooting stars, from Kamala Harris and Cory Booker to Beto O'Rourke. So anyone who thought the demagogy had peaked is wrong.”

Daily Sabah (TR) /

Weakened president is all the more dangerous

Daily Sabah is worried about how Trump will react now that he's cornered:

“The less Trump sees the opposition as a threat, the less aggressive he is likely to act. It is not a secret anymore that whenever his administration isn't approved or loses its legitimacy in politics, Trump always dares to make a power play. Therefore, these very elections results will directly lead Trump to further his aggressive policies, which he believed help him win the elections.”

Népszava (HU) /

Women could have calming effect

Népszava, by contrast, wonders whether the high proportion of women in the House of Representatives will make US politics a little gentler in future:

“Time will tell whether their presence really has a soothing and relaxing effect on the numerous hotheads in Congress. We'll also see whether the female politicians have an easier time finding common ground when it comes to resolving the country's problems. One thing is sure: the future speaker of the House of Representatives, the Democrat Nancy Pelosi, will play a leading role in what promises to be a tough struggle with the White House and the Senate. She's a hard-boiled politician and an unflappable woman so it's no wonder the Republicans have been trying to ruin her reputation for years.”

Financial Times (GB) /

Focus on issues that matter to Americans

The Democrats shouldn't let their newly won power in the House of Representatives put them on a path of radical confrontation with President Trump, the Financial Times advises:

“If the next two years are dominated only by partisan infighting in Washington, the American public's disillusionment with politics is only likely to grow. The Democrats themselves could become the targets of a popular backlash. Instead, political leaders on both sides of the Congressional aisle should try to concentrate on the issues that matter to all Americans, regardless of their party, race or gender. These are the bread-and-butter questions of politics: the economy, healthcare and the state of American infrastructure.”

BBC (GB) /

Chance to fight back

The Democrats have won back a big chunk of influence, comments BBC News:

“It won't feel like the tsunami many on the left were hoping for, but a steadily rising tide is still lifting Democrats to enough victories to give them control of the House for the first time in eight years. With that comes the ability to stop the Trump legislative agenda in its tracks and puts some teeth in congressional oversight of his administration. The partisan trenches in America are getting deeper. And after two years in the darkness, Democrats have a means to fight back.”

NRC Handelsblad (NL) /

A shift in Trump's favour

This is no real victory for the Democrats, in the eyes of Bas Blokker, the US correspondent of NRC Handelsblad:

“The election of Donald Trump in 2016 was not a momentary lapse then. The Democrats have taken back the House of Representatives but Trump's fanatical involvement in this election undoubtedly limited Republican losses. ... Yesterday's results show a shift in Trump's favour. In various electoral districts it was moderate Republicans who lost their mandate. ... This means the Republicans in the House of Representatives will now be more Trumpish. The same goes for the Senate.”

24 Chasa (BG) /

Vetos, blockades, standstill

The Democrats' regaining control of the House of Representatives will only make everything even more complicated, fears 24 Chasa:

“The elections will not change anything per se, except to intensify the battle between the Republicans and the Democrats in the US. The House of Representatives will block the president and the Senate. The president, the Senate and the Supreme Court will block the House of Representatives. A halt in financing will probably lead to an administrative standstill. The Democrats will try to reverse parts of Trump's tax reform, which he in turn will veto, and so on and so forth.” (GR) /

Can the president do consensus?

Protagon doubts that Trump knows how to deal with the new circumstances:

“This is a watershed moment. ... The Americans came out in force to vote in the midterms and send a message to Trump. Whether the 45th president of the US will hear this is another question. Trump is not a person who likes listening. He will be forced to 'work together', because the Democrats will want to block his legislative work. Consensus will be necessary to pass draft laws. And unlike his predecessor, Trump is not a man of compromise, quite the opposite in fact.”