In today’s news & commentary, Democrats celebrate after the anticipated “red wave” in the midterms failed to materialize; a major railroad union agrees not to strike before early December; and consumer price index inflation rates, though high, are lower than anticipated.
Following election day earlier this week, President Biden and the Democratic Party celebrated avoiding, for the most part, the anticipated “red wave” in the midterm elections. President Biden tweeted, “We lost fewer seats in the House of Representatives than any Democratic president’s first midterm election in at least 40 years. And we had the best midterms for Governors since 1986.” Although Republicans are likely to gain control of the House of Representatives, several key Senate races remain too close to call.
The threat of a highly powerful railway labor strike continues to loom, but the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employes Division has announced it will not be striking earlier than December 4, aligning dates with the Brotherhood of Railroad Signalmen. The BMWE had previously announced it could begin a strike by November 20 at the earliest. Both unions rejected the tentative agreement that the Biden administration had helped broker earlier this year largely due to a lack of paid sick leave provisions. The two largest rail unions are continuing to vote on the agreement; if either of the unions reject the agreement, BMWE stated the strike date is likely to be further delayed to build power across the unions, educate a Congress currently on recess, and unify to a single strike date.
The Wall Street Journal reported that the year-over-year consumer price index increased 7.7% in October, slightly below the 8.2% rate in September and the lowest12-month increase since January 2022. However, inflation rates are still among the highest in four decades. Inflation was among the highest concerns that voters reported at the polls on Tuesday.