Five Bullets

C. Bastasin: Too much complacency in Europe for the US mid-term vote

1) The mid-term elections in the US were met with relief in Europe. Europeans see, in view of the 2024 presidential elections, a Democratic president as a better ally than a Republican president, especially Donald Trump. However, a careful analysis of the vote offers less encouraging signs:

2) The vote highlights the erosion of the Democratic vote by non-white voters. The share of Latino voters favoring Republican candidates rose from 25% to 39%, driven in part by the success of Ron DeSantis. Together with other ethnicities, a demographic trend emerges that is no longer favorable to Democrats.

3) Some states that Democrats considered "swing states" have become radicalized and are not easily won, starting with Florida and Ohio. Likewise, Texas, which was to be a successful base for Beto O'Rourke, is now considered no longer contestable.

4) Independent voters voted less than usual against the incumbent president, Joe Biden, because they considered Trump too extreme, but this did not happen where the Republican candidates were distant from the former president. It is possible that DeSantis' "hidden weaknesses" will emerge in a direct confrontation with Trump in the primaries, but if not, the Florida governor is in favor of Biden.

5) For the European Union it would be illusory to take comfort in the democratic victory in the mid-term vote and waste time in rebuilding a certain degree of strategic autonomy and, although today it is almost impossible, of economic self-sufficiency from the United States or the autocratic powers.

Download the PDF