quote: “No one suggests that he is a perpetrator, but pipe bombs as a tool of political intimidation do not arrive unexpectedly. They come after the President’s remarks on “birtherism,” Mexican “rapists,” and Charlottesville; after “enemy of the people” and “Lock Her Up!” They come after he has mocked the disabled and victims of sexual violence, after he has praised many of the world’s autocrats and diminished democratic allies. Violence, for him, is a source of titillation. Recently, Trump rallied Montana Republicans by extolling their incumbent congressman, Greg Gianforte—“He’s my guy”—not because Gianforte had devised a piece of legislation for the common good but because he had body-slammed a reporter to the ground. “This is actually exactly why my father won,” Eric Trump said recently on Fox News. He is “un-P.C.,” not a “perfectly scripted politician.”
closing paragraph: “The midterm elections are being held in an atmosphere of immense national stress. It could only be so when the singular actor in the drama is Donald Trump, who thrives on the idea that American life is a daily cliffhanger, in which the hero bravely sets out to deepen the divide between his supporters and everyone else, to dismantle international agreements and alliances, and to protect corporate interests over the interests of working people and the natural world. There are, unquestionably, countless local and regional issues being debated, but, above all, this election is a referendum on Trump, a contest between his base and those who feel that it is in the national interest to establish at least some brake—a new majority in the House of Representatives, a new crop of governors and state legislators—to slow his disintegration of American life and his despoilment of the national spirit. Two years ago, the prospect of a Trump Presidency represented an emergency. Tens of millions of voters found a reason to stay home. This year, the polls are tight. The stakes cannot be overstated.” - David Remnick, editor, The New Yorker
Midterm elections are always a referendum on the President.
More precisely, they are measure of how engaged the President’s party is compared to the opposition.