Score one for conventional wisdom. Heading into Election Night, political analysts stung by the results of the 2016 election were reluctant to make definitive predictions. The consensus view, however, prevailed: Democrats were expected to ride historic trends, a wave of Republican retirements, and an energized base back to power in the House of Representatives and several state capitals; while Republicans were expected to hold, and possibly expand, their majority in the U.S. Senate. This is what happened. Now the task is to interpret, but not over-interpret, the results. As we saw in 2012, the outcome of a midterm is a weak predictor of the following election, so we caution against making early predictions about 2020. Still, some clear trends are worth noting.
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