Two key factors, according to Judge Jeanine Pirro, helped Democrats avoid a Republican “red wave”: President Biden’s student loan handout and abortion.
“I’ll tell you what won this election for the Democrats: Sure, the young people came out vote; they got paid – I mean, they got their student loans paid back. It was a buyout,” Pirro said Monday on “The Five.” “But the other thing is: abortion. It was all about abortion.”
President Biden offered up something many legal observers believed would eventually be struck down by the courts, but the student loan handout seemed enough to bring out the 18-24 vote to put Democrats over the top, the panel on “The Five” debated.
While a federal judge has since struck down Biden’s overture – which many said would have been the largest executive branch delegation of legislative branch power in some time – it was still timed well enough to invigorate young people to back the president’s party.
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Coupling that with the realization of Republicans 50-year goal of protecting unborn lives after the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Mississippi and returned abortion regulatory power to the states, the GOP faced an uphill battle, Pirro said.
Pirro noted the president had little to do with the Supreme Court’s Dobbs ruling, but that the Republicans’ celebration of a win for the right to life soured many independents and Democrats they had been courting:
“Joe Biden didn’t do abortion. Abortion just kind of fell out of the Supreme Court for whatever reason in May or June of this year – and that was it,” Pirro said.
“That’s all the Democrats needed. Now they’re going to beat their chests. They’re going to say, well, it’s because we’re so great: Joe Biden, what a leader – [but] America hates him.”
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Pirro added Democrats likewise see their Senate retention and rebuke of several conservative and Trumpian Republicans as a mandate to govern from the socialist or progressive left.
“The Democrats are taking this as a mandate… This will be the most progressive next two years that we’ve ever seen,” she said.
But, she noted Democrats misperception of a legislative mandate along with Biden’s unpopularity could really hurt them in 2024.
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Unlike in 2022, when more vulnerable Republican seats were up versus Democrats, 2024 will host many more possibilities for the inverse, as Democrats like West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin – a lawmaker whose state continues to grow redder – leads his party’s handful of potentially tenuous re-election races.
Moderate Democrat Kyrsten Sinema will have to defend her Arizona seat, while Sens. Bob Casey Jr. of Pennsylvania, Jon Tester of Montana, Debbie Stabenow of Michigan, Jacky Rosen of Nevada, Sherrod Brown of Ohio, Tim Kaine of Virginia and Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin all represent states where Republicans either won in 2022 or got very close.