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U.S.: A century of fighting for control of Congress infographic

Historical control of Senate and House of Representatives

10/09/2018
Graphic News

November 6, 2018 -- The U.S. midterm elections take place in November every four years – midway through a president’s four year term in office. All 435 seats in the House of Representatives and 35 of the 100 seats in the Senate will next be contested on November 6, 2018.

In addition, 34 of the 50 U.S. states elect their governors to four-year terms during midterm elections, while Vermont and New Hampshire elect governors to two-year terms in both midterm and presidential elections. Thus, 36 governors are elected during midterm elections. Municipal elections also occur and many states also elect officers to their state legislatures. On the ballot are many mayors, other local public offices, and a wide variety of citizen initiatives.

The “midterms” usually generate lower voter turnout than presidential elections – the latter have turnouts of about 50–60%, with only around 40% turning up at midterm polling stations. Although this may be higher in 2018 as voters could view their choices as a referendum on President Trump, whose divisive policies are antagonising a high proportion of the electorate.


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