By Michael Bitzer
Since the dust has seemingly settled on 2022, and already we're turning attention to 2024 (yes, I know, I know), the hot takes of what the 2022 mid-term elections are flying fast and furious before we shift our gaze to the next election cycle.
Needless to say, there's a LOT to digest and understand about what this historic election means in the context of what we know about mid-term elections in our politics. My fellow contributors and I have been bouncing ideas back and forth between each other, but the one thing (or more appropriately, the one 'model') that we political scientists tend to rely on for explaining mid-term election is the connection between a president's approval rating and the ultimate number of seats in Congress gained, or more likely, lost.
In a couple of public presentations made over the election cycle, here's a chart of the president's approval ratings (on the horizontal, or X axis) compared to the number of congressional seats gained or lost (on the vertical, or Y axis):