Democrats in the House of Representatives are likely to reopen an intelligence committee investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election – and begin assisting the criminal inquiry on the same subject by the special counsel Robert Mueller.
Devin Nunes, the committee’s outgoing Republican chairman and a Trump ally, obstructed efforts by Democrats to investigate possible collusion with
Nunes also declined to share information with Mueller.
But Adam Schiff, Nunes’s likely Democratic replacement, has promised to resume the committee’s inquiries and pursue new avenues such as the Trump Organization’s business links to
The extension of the Republican majority in the Senate, however, may embolden Trump to nominate a harder-line replacement for the attorney general, Jeff Sessions, in order to fire Mueller and shut down the special counsel’s investigation. If that happens, expect some Democrats to propose rehiring Mueller as an independent counsel to continue his investigation on behalf of the House. Jon Swaine
Now that Democrats have the House, President Trump’s dream of a “big, beautiful wall” will be all the more elusive.
Before the midterms, the outgoing House speaker, Paul Ryan, promised there would be a “ big fight ” over the border wall immediately after the election. The Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell, said this was still the plan on Wednesday morning, but Republicans now go into that fight against an emboldened Democratic party.
By 8 December, Congress must reach a deal on Department of Homeland Security funding, including the wall – a narrow window for Republicans to secure significant wall funding before Democrats take control of the House in January.
House Democrats have also said they will try to restore protections for Dreamers, undocumented immigrants who arrived in the US as children. Voters on both sides of the aisle have expressed broad support for creating a pathway to citizenship for this population and the Trump administration has used them as a bargaining chip since revoking their protections in 2017. Amanda Holpuch
Unless Trump gets re-elected in 2020, it now looks certain his massive tax bill will be his last. That $1.5tn giveaway, Trump’s largest congressional achievement, mainly benefited the very wealthy and corporations and has polled badly with voters, so badly that Republicans barely mentioned it in the run-up to the midterms. He has since promised another tax cut aimed at the middle class.
Now, with Democrats in control of the House, any legislation will be hard to pass.
There are areas of common ground – Trump counselor Kellyanne Conway has already mentioned infrastructure – but given the partisan divide in
The picture on trade also becomes more complex as the president’s powers are curtailed. Politicians in
Trump can still use executive orders to force through change but the president’s chances of passing meaningful legislation were hobbled on Tuesday. Now he will be buffeted by the larger, outside forces that will decide the US’s economic forces – forces that are beyond his control. Dominic Rushe
Republican efforts to dismantle the Affordable Care Act (ACA) at a national level are almost guaranteed to halt now that the House is in the hands of the Democrats.
At the state level, Democratic governors-elect in
Before the election, Nancy Pelosi, who is expected to return to her former role as House speaker, said a legislative priority would be lowering pharmaceutical drug costs – an issue that could have bipartisan support.
And reproductive rights groups have called last night’s results a victory. Federal efforts to limit women’s reproductive rights will be challenged with Democrats in control of the House. And in
Attempts to ramp up action to address climate change faltered, most notably in
Elsewhere, a ballot proposal to require that
Democrats picked up seven governor’s seats by early Wednesday.
The governor races are particularly important because of a once-in-a-decade redistricting process due to begin in 2021. States will be required to redraw congressional districts to make sure each one represents the same number of residents.
That’s where gerrymandering – the process where a party draws often oddly shaped districts to best maximize their voters – can occur.
State legislatures do the redrawing, but it is the state’s governor who has the ability to sign or veto the new congressional map in their state. That means a Democrat governor elected on Tuesday to a four-year term would have the power to prevent Republicans – who have become experts at gerrymandering, most notably in