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Old Gold & Black

Old Gold & Black

Election of 2014 defined by Republican gains

Election+of+2014+defined+by+Republican+gains

REPUBLICANS GAIN CONTROL OF HOUSE AND SENATE—

The midterm election of 2014 will be remembered for the Republican Party gains, which gave them control of both houses of congress for the first time since 2007. The GOP picked up eight senate seats, giving them a 53 to 46 majority in that body, and 12 house seats giving them 244 representatives to the Democrats 186.

Leah Hunter, president of the Wofford College Republicans, says that Republican gains are a reflection of frustration with the presidency of Barack Obama.

“Obama went out on the campaign trail and said ‘I’m not on the ballot but my policies are,’” Hunter says. “Republicans gaining control of the senate and maintaining control of the house is a reflection that people are not happy with his policies.”

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Allen Lollis, third vice chair of the SCGOP, agrees with Hunter. Lollis says after years of Democratic control voters are ready to try something else.

“They’re tired of the Democrat’s inability to lead and are looking to the Republican party and conservative principles to fix the mess we’re in.”

While they are in agreement about the cause of the Republican victories, Hunter and Lollis are unsure how 2014 will shape the last two years of Obama’s presidency.

“There is going to be a pushback against executive power,” Hunter says. “The president is wanting to expand executive power, and it is going to be a solid fight over what he can and can’t do within his constitutional limits.”

Whether or not Republicans will be able to maintain this momentum for the 2016 general election is yet to be determined, but early signs are not good for the GOP. Early polling shows Hillary Clinton close to double digits ahead of likely Republican nominees. Hunter does not like the Republican’s chances to reclaim the White House in two years.

“With the way elections are now, front runners come out two or three years ahead of the election,” Hunter says, “and I personally don’t see a single candidate in the Republican party that will win.”

Lollis sees the lack of a clear Republican nominee for 2016 as a good thing.

“We have a very deep bench to pick a candidate from,” Lollis says. “We’ve got a diverse crowd of young charismatic leaders who would make wonderful Presidents.”

Currently the three Republicans polling closest to Clinton are Paul Ryan, Rand Paul and Chris Christie. Hunter says that the lack of a clear front-runner is a sign of a fractured party. .

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