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The Mid-Term Congressional Elections and U.S. Foreign Policy

by Dr. Mike Haltzel

Senior Fellow at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies

The election of November 7, 2006 that propelled the Democrats into the majority in both Houses of the U.S. Congress was replete with paradoxes. Few observers believe that the Democrats’ victory was a mandate for a sweeping new program, domestic or foreign. In fact, during the campaign the Democrats, while they did articulate a coherent domestic agenda, were content to criticize the Bush foreign policy without offering a unified position on the leading issue of the day, the Iraq war. The Democrats’ victory was more a repudiation of the Republicans, who had become identified with corruption, economic inequality, and a deeply unpopular war: in short, a feeling that the country was on the wrong track.

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