November 8th was Election Day in the United States. These polls are generally considered to be a referendum on the current party holding the White House. History tells us that the party out of power generally does well in these polls.
While there were polls that show that President Biden is not very popular right now with the American Electorate the widely assumed or expected Red Wave did not materialize. Granted not all of the races have been called due to the close results it is expected that the Republicans will take over control of the House of Representatives while the Senate remains murky.
One thing that appears to be clear is that if there is a theme to these polls is that it is clear that it is the year of the incumbent. Another idea should be that there should be a debate before there is any early voting. But there are some interesting takeaways that most pundits won’t mention.
While the Americans were in the voting booths a letter was sent to President Biden regarding Iran. The Lawmakers were pressing for the removal of Rob Malley as Special Envoy to Iran and to have a Permanent End to negotiations for the JCPOA or a lesser than Agreement. In a rally just before the actual vote President Biden was asked about Iran and he replied “Change is coming”. Those members who signed on to this letter have the view that the Administration is not serious about assisting the protestors. So how much pressure will the next Congress place on the White House to assist the protestors?
Another interesting takeaway in Foreign Policy. Afghanistan doesn’t matter anymore. The debacle of the US withdrawal has been forgotten by the electorate. Those who support Ukraine will feel vindicated as a perceived threat to reduction of US Aid appears to have abated.
Will there be any additonal scrutiny be placed on Turkey and Saudi Arabia? These countries are nominal allies of the United States but have recently have displayed actions that can be seen as hostile to the interests of the United States. The expansion of Turkish Military contacts in West Africa should be watched and the apparent willingness by the Administration to have OPEC increase production instead of an increased US domestic production is a victory for the Kingdom and a defeat for the American Consumer.
Who will be the next voice to speak up in the House for Africa? With the retirement of Congresswoman Karen Bass to run for Mayor of Los Angeles this will open a glaring hole that needs to be filled. Especially as France winds down Operation Barkhane in West Africa. There is an opportunity here for a voice to step up here. Doesn’t Matter which Party they belong to either.
Other than these items there probably won’t be any more changes coming in Washington save any unforeseen Black Swans that will appear in 2023.