View from the (Former) Press Box

Nedra here: As a former White House reporter, I see the midterms as the first day of the 2024 presidential race. What themes and personalities will win the hearts and minds of voters? Many politicians we’ve seen campaigning this midterm –for themselves or on behalf of others –clearly have higher ambitions and are laying the groundwork for a presidential run. And there’s no bigger shadow campaign than the one being run by the current president amid more Democrats calling for him not to run for re-election.

Here’s what else some of my fellow FGS colleagues who also happen to be former political reporters are watching:

Beth Fouhy: I’ll be watching for turnout, particularly among younger voters. We saw a noticeable surge in registration among younger voters after the Dobbs decision. Will those voters turn out? Historically, younger voters are very underrepresented in midterm elections. I’ll also be watching the Hispanic vote in several key states, including Nevada and Florida. While still largely Democratic, we’ve seen a slow, steady movement to the right among some Hispanic voters, especially younger men. Will that still be the case this time?

Anne Gearan: Like everyone else I’ll be looking at Georgia and Pennsylvania, but I think it’s worth stepping back a bit and thinking about how those two very different states have emerged as pivotal. The dynamics making each state competitive share characteristics yet look different: urbanization, ease of employment but inability to afford housing, changing demographics, class disparities.

Jennifer Loven: I’m watching whether the political media capture the true drivers behind the results. Can the media go beyond stubborn horse-race obsession and simplistic issue reporting to explain the myriad types of anger and fear across demographics, like women, rural communities, left-behind geographies, young people, urban dwellers, voters of color and more? Companies need to understand whose anger and fear won this time, and where and why, because those are their customers, employees, investors and regulators.