The Enduring Puzzle of the Midterm Elections

Can a president’s party win the midterm elections? And should they even try?

Franklin Roosevelt speaking to the Senate in 1938, the year of his worst midterm defeat. Source: U.S. Senate

The midterms are a little over a year away, but to some pundits it feels as though they are scheduled for sometime next week. Every action that Joe Biden takes is viewed in the context of next year’s elections. As Harold Meyerson wrote of the president’s struggling reconciliation bill, “it’s not just Biden but…