Tuesday’s results show that abortion rights continue to be a driving force in races across the country and will shape next year’s elections. Voters in Ohio, an increasingly red state which voted twice for Trump, passed a ballot measure by a wide margin enshrining abortion rights in the state constitution.
Looking ahead to next year, in Arizona, activists are gathering signatures for a 2024 ballot initiative that will ask voters a similar abortion question to Ohio’s this year. Other swing states, including Pennsylvania, Iowa, Florida, and Colorado, could have abortion rights measures on their ballots alongside the presidential candidates next year.
In Virginia, Governor Youngkin’s coattails were tested and were not as long as once thought. Republicans in Virginia failed to retain the House of Delegates and Democrats held the state Senate, which Youngkin aimed to flip. Again, abortion politics took center stage in campaigns as Youngkin backed a 15-week abortion ban that would have had no resistance with Republican-controlled House and Senate. It also likely puts to bed the notion that Youngkin will attempt a late entry into the 2024 GOP presidential primary.
Election Night saw a several historic victories. In Rhode Island, Democrat Gabe Amo is the projected winner a special congressional election. He will be the first Black person to represent the state in Congress. In Philadelphia, former city councilmember Cherelle Parker will become the first woman to lead the city.
The Kentucky Governor’s race should be a good sign for President Biden after a week of bad poll numbers. Democratic Governor Andy Beshear held onto victory despite millions spent by the Republican Governors Association and allies of Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron tying the Governor Beshear to President Biden.
Republican Governor Tate Reeves’ re-election in Mississippi was no surprise. There had been some press leading up to Election Day signaling a Democratic surge and a tightening race, but in the end, Governor Reeves maintained the same margin as when he was first elected in 2019.
Overall, it was a positive Election Day for Democrats. Looking ahead to next year, it is clear abortion will be a pivotal issue nationally.