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谁会赢得美国中期选举?这里是四种可能性

Who Will Win the Battle for Congress? Four Scenarios.
谁会赢得美国中期选举?这里是四种可能性

Just about anything is still possible in this year’s midterm elections.

今年的中期选举什么事都可能发生。

Everything from a Democratic hold in the Senate and a fairly close race for the House to something like a Republican rout is well within the range of realistic possibilities on Tuesday.

从民主党掌控参议院,众议院席位争夺胶着,再到共和党大败,都在周二的现实可能性范围之内。
 

Why such a wide range? With so many races on edge, it wouldn’t take much for the final outcome to feel very good, or very bad, for either party.

为什么会有这么多的可能性?由于很多选举势均力敌,对于双方来说,最终的结果很容易不是非常好就是非常坏。

In the Senate, the races likeliest to decide control remain exceptionally close, with the poll averages showing essentially a dead-heat in Georgia, Pennsylvania, Nevada, Arizona and even New Hampshire. With just a few lucky breaks, either party could win control.

在参议院,最有可能决定控制权的竞争仍然异常激烈。民意调查的平均结果显示,在佐治亚州、宾夕法尼亚州、内华达州、亚利桑那州,甚至新罕布什尔州,双方基本上不相上下。只要运气好,任何一方都可能赢得控制权。

There’s a similar story in the House. While Republicans are plainly favored to win the chamber, dozens of races are tossups. It wouldn’t take much for Democrats to keep the race fairly close, perhaps delaying a call on House control for many hours or perhaps even days. On the other hand, it wouldn’t take much for Republicans to pick up dozens of seats, leaving the impression that 2022 was something like a wave election.

众议院也有类似的情况。虽然共和党人显然更有希望赢得众议院,但几十场竞选仍是胜负难料。对民主党人来说,很容易出现旗鼓相当的局面,或许可以将对众议院控制权的结果宣布推迟数小时甚至数天。另一方面,也很容易出现共和党人获得几十个席位的局面,让人觉得2022年选举是一场“大潮”。

There is also the possibility of more surprising outcomes: a true Republican landslide or a Democratic hold on Congress. The polls have been wrong before. The voters, after all, have the final say.

也有可能出现更出乎意料的结果:共和党真正取得压倒性胜利,或者民主党控制国会。民意调查以前也出现过错误。毕竟,最终决定权在选民手中。

Here’s an overview of what might still happen — how it might happen, why so much remains possible, and what signs to look for on election night.

以下是对可能出现情况的概述——它们如何发生,为什么有这么多的可能性,以及在选举之夜应该注意哪些迹象。

Scenario 1: The clear Republican win

场景一:共和党获胜


With five critical Senate races and dozens of House races looking like tossups, even some random breaks could give Republicans something that feels like a rout: control of the Senate and a big gain in the House.

由于五场关键的参议院选举和几十场众议院选举看起来势均力敌,即使是一些随机的突破,也可能给共和党带来一种大胜的感觉:控制参议院和在众议院席位大幅增加。

The election could still be fairly close. It might still take days to resolve. But it wouldn’t take much for the final scoreboard to look more like a rout than a close and competitive race.

选举结果仍然可能相当接近。可能需要几天时间才能解决。但是,最终结果看起来很容易像是胜负悬殊而不是势均力敌的竞争。

In almost every critical race, the final Times/Siena polls suggested that voters preferred Republican control of Congress and disapproved of President Biden’s performance, but Democrats often had the advantage of incumbency or Republicans had the disadvantage of an unpopular candidate.

在几乎每场关键的竞选中,时报/Siena的最终民调都显示,选民更倾向于共和党控制国会,不认可拜登总统的表现,但民主党往往有在任优势,共和党则因不受欢迎的候选人而处于劣势。

But Republicans could quickly have a great night if even a small share of voters swallows their doubts about unpopular nominees or discards their warm feelings about longtime Democratic incumbents.

但是,如果哪怕是一小部分选民对不受欢迎的提名人放下疑虑,或者放弃对民主党长期在任者的好感,共和党人也可以轻松度过一个美好的夜晚。

Another factor, as always, is turnout, especially in the House races in states with less competitive races at the top of the ticket. It might be enough for Republicans to scratch out a few extra wins.

和往常一样,另一个因素是投票率,尤其是在众议院选举中那些重要候选人竞争不那么激烈的州。这可能足以让共和党人取得一些额外的胜利。

It might take a long time before a clear Republican success becomes a certainty. It might take days before critical races in Arizona, Pennsylvania and Nevada are resolved. Georgia might take until December, if no candidate clears the 50 percent necessary to avoid a runoff.

确认共和党的胜利可能需要很长时间。亚利桑那州、宾夕法尼亚州和内华达州的关键竞选可能需要几天时间才能结束。如果没有候选人达到避免第二轮选举所需的50%的比例,佐治亚州可能要等到12月。

But on Tuesday night, the signs of a clear Republican win might still start to pile up. Republicans would quickly register comfortable wins in North Carolina, Florida and Ohio. New Hampshire might be close, even if the Democrats pull it out. Wisconsin would be in the Republican column by bedtime. A series of crucial House districts in the Southeast, like North Carolina’s 13th and Virginia’s Second, might swing into the Republican column. The odds of Democrats holding on in the pivotal but slower-counting states would start to look pretty bleak.

但在周二晚上可能仍会陆续出现一些共和党获胜的明确迹象。共和党人很快就会在北卡罗来纳州、佛罗里达州和俄亥俄州轻松获胜。新罕布什尔州可能会势均力敌,即使民主党最终获胜。到了大家入睡的时间,威斯康星州会归入共和党阵营。东南部一系列关键的众议院选区,如北卡罗来纳州的第13选区和弗吉尼亚州的第2选区,可能会转向共和党阵营。民主党在关键但计票速度较慢的州坚持下去的可能性将开始变得相当渺茫。

Scenario 2: The feels-like-a-win for Democrats

场景二:感觉像是民主党的胜利


Democrats cling to a five-seat majority in the House, but if they get a few breaks, the night still might leave them with a lot to feel good about — even if the scoreboard still shows the Republicans gaining seats and taking the House. It might even feel like a Democratic win, given how the polls have trended toward Republicans in recent weeks.

民主党人在众议院仍保持着五个席位的多数优势,但如果他们能有所突破,当晚他们可能仍会有很多值得高兴的事情——即使记分牌上仍然显示共和党人增加了席位并控制了众议院。考虑到最近几周民调的趋势是倾向于共和党,这甚至可能让人觉得是民主党的胜利。

This feels-like-a-win mainly comes down to holding control of the Senate. To hold the chamber, the party will probably need to win three of the four most critical races: Pennsylvania, Georgia, Arizona and Nevada.

这种胜利的感觉主要来自对参议院的控制。为了保住参议院,共和党可能需要赢得四个最关键的州中的三个:宾夕法尼亚州、佐治亚州、亚利桑那州和内华达州。

Democrats would start to feel a lot better if they could add a few more feel-good wins to the ledger, like beating “stop the steal” Republican candidates for governor in Pennsylvania and Arizona, or a victory for abortion rights in Michigan. It might just be enough for Democrats to take a glass-half-full perspective on the 2022 election, provided the party also holds down its House losses and can save face by avoiding embarrassingly close races in blue states and districts, like for governor of New York or for the Senate from Washington.

如果民主党能在账簿上多添几场令他们感觉良好的胜利,比如在宾夕法尼亚州和亚利桑那州州长竞选中击败主张“停止偷窃”的共和党候选人,或者在密歇根州因堕胎权赢得胜利,他们会感觉好得多。这可能足以让民主党人对2022年的选举持乐观态度,前提是该党还能控制住在众议院的损失,并能避免在蓝色州和选区进行令人尴尬的激烈角逐,比如纽约州州长或华盛顿州参议院的角逐。

The Democratic path to an acceptable night counts on voters who will back the candidate they know and like most, even if they don’t love the idea of having Democrats control the Senate. Staving off embarrassment will also require Democrats to turn out in states far removed from the national spotlight — the states where the Senate isn’t at stake, where abortion is not on the ballot, and where no stop-the-steal candidate has a realistic chance of winning statewide.

要想获得一个说得过去的夜晚,民主党得指望选民去支持他们最了解和最喜欢的候选人,即使他们不希望民主党控制参议院。要避免难堪的局面,民主党人还需要在远离全国焦点的州取得胜利——在这些州,参议院席位不是关键,堕胎问题不会影响选票,主张“阻止偷窃”的候选人没有真正机会在全州范围内获胜。

It will take a long time before it becomes clear that Democrats are on track for a feels-like-a-win. There’s a distinct chance that none of the key Senate races will be called on election night. Democrats will start to feel optimistic on Tuesday night if they can stay close in states like Ohio, Wisconsin and North Carolina, and hold the key East Coast House races.

要花很长时间才能清楚地看到民主党人正在走向“感觉好像胜利了”。很有可能在选举之夜,关键的参议院竞选都不会有结果。如果民主党能在俄亥俄州、威斯康辛州和北卡罗来纳州等州保持势均力敌的态势,并在关键的东海岸众议院选举中获胜,他们将在周二晚上开始感到乐观。

They might even get outright excited if Mark Kelly opens up a wide lead in Arizona’s increasingly Democratic early mail vote.

如果马克·凯利在亚利桑那州越来越倾向民主党的提前邮寄选票中大幅领先,他们甚至可能会非常乐观。

Scenario 3: The Republican landslide

场景三:共和党取得压倒性胜利


If the polls underestimate the Republicans again, the result of this year’s midterms won’t just feel like a Republican landslide — it will be a Republican landslide.

如果民意调查再次低估了共和党,那么今年中期选举的结果将不仅仅感觉像是共和党的压倒性胜利,而确实是共和党的压倒性胜利。

A “red wave” election would not be a surprise; nor would it be hard to explain. President Biden’s approval ratings are stuck in the low 40s, a figure as low or lower than Donald J. Trump’s approval ratings in 2018, Bill Clinton’s in 1994 and Barack Obama’s in 2010. In each case, the party out of power gained 40 or more House seats and won the House national popular vote by around seven percentage points or more. With Republicans making steady gains in the polls, it does not take any great imagination to see them stretching out a more decisive lead.

选举出现“红色大潮”并不令人意外;也不难解释。拜登总统的支持率徘徊在40%左右,与2018年的特朗普、1994年的克林顿和2010年的奥巴马一样低,甚至更低。在上述三个情形下,总统竞选中失败的政党都获得了40个或更多的众议院席位,并以大约七个百分点或更多优势赢得了众议院全国普选票数。随着共和党人在民意调查中稳步上升,不需要多大的想象力就能看到他们能够取得更大的领先优势。

It’s tempting to think a decisive Republican victory isn’t possible in such a polarized country, especially because Democrats have won the national vote in seven of the last eight presidential elections. But just last November, Republicans won the Virginia governor’s race by two percentage points — exactly the kind of showing that would be equivalent to a red wave nationwide.

人们很容易认为,在这样一个两极分化的国家,共和党不可能取得压倒性的胜利,尤其是考虑到过去八次总统选举中,民主党七次赢得普选。但就在去年11月,共和党人以两个百分点的优势赢得了弗吉尼亚州州长的竞选,这种表现恰恰相当于在全国范围内掀起了一轮红色大潮。

The red wave doesn’t necessarily require the surveys to be systematically biased in the same ways they were two years ago, though that very well might happen. It may require only that undecided voters decide, as they often have, to use their vote as a check on the party of the president, regardless of their feelings about individual Democratic incumbents. Or maybe it would just take an unexpectedly strong Republican turnout on Election Day, while young, Black and Hispanic voters stay home in greater numbers than they did in 2018.

“红色大潮”未必一定意味着调查像两年前那样存在系统性偏见的情况,虽然这很有可能发生。可能只需要那些犹豫不决的选民决定利用手里的选票作为对总统党派的制约,无视他们对具体某个在任民主党人的评价如何。又或者共和党人在选举日的投票率出人意料地高,而年轻人、黑人和西语裔选民不去投票的人数大大超出2018年。

On Tuesday night, if Republicans are headed for a landslide, the signs would be obvious from the start. Not only would Senator Marco Rubio and Gov. Ron DeSantis cruise to victory in Florida, where votes are counted quickly, but safe Democratic House incumbents in South Florida — even the well-known former Democratic National Committee chair Debbie Wasserman-Schultz — might find themselves in surprisingly close races. Farther north, Republicans would easily flip the key tossup districts in Virginia and North Carolina, but also advance even further into blue territory — flipping Virginia’s Seventh, held by Abigail Spanberger, while endangering the next tier of safer Democratic incumbents, like Jennifer Wexton. The Senate races in North Carolina and Ohio would not be close.

周二晚上,如果共和党人取得压倒性胜利,那么迹象从一开始就会很明显。不仅参议员马尔科·卢比奥和州长罗恩·德桑蒂斯将在快速计票的佛罗里达州大获全胜,而且南佛罗里达州竞选形势原本无虞的民主党现任众议员,甚至包括著名的前民主党全国委员会主席黛比·沃瑟曼·舒尔茨,可能会发现自己面临激烈竞争。在北方,共和党人很容易在弗吉尼亚州和北卡罗来纳州的关键选区翻盘,但不仅如此,他们还会进一步进入民主党的地盘——拿下阿比盖尔·斯潘伯格控制的弗吉尼亚州第七选区,同时危及詹妮弗·韦克斯顿等原本比较安全的民主党现任议员。北卡罗来纳州和俄亥俄州的参议员竞选也不会出现两党候选人势均力敌的情况。

It might still be a long time until we see a call in the Senate, but in this scenario Herschel Walker would have a chance to clear the 50 percent necessary to win outright and avoid a runoff in Georgia. A Republican win in the Senate race in New Hampshire would seal the deal.

我们可能还需要很长一段时间才能看到参议院落在谁的手里,但在这种情况下,赫舍尔·沃克将有机会拿到直接获胜所需的50%的选票,从而避免乔治亚州的决选。如果共和党人在新罕布什尔州的参议院竞选中获胜,形势就明朗了。

Scenario 4: A Democratic surprise

场景四:民主党人的惊喜


A surprising Democratic night — a hold in the House and the Senate — is unlikely. With polls trending toward Republicans, the outcome feels even harder to imagine than the word “unlikely” suggests.

民主党不太可能迎来一个出人意料的夜晚——拿下参众两院。由于民调倾向于共和党,结果比“不太可能”这个词所暗示的要更难以想像。

But it does remain within the realm of possibility: Democrats are still within striking distance of a good night. Unlike in previous cycles, they remain competitive in enough races to win control of the House. And not only do Democrats remain competitive in the race for the Senate, but they also have upside potential for a good night: Upsets remain possible in states like Wisconsin, Ohio and North Carolina, even if Republicans are plainly favored.

但也不是完全不可能:民主党人仍有可能迎来一个获得佳绩的夜晚。与之前的选举不同,他们在足够多的竞选中仍保持着竞争力,足以拿下众议院的控制权。民主党人不仅在参议院的角逐中保持了竞争力,而且还有进一步变得更理想的空间:威斯康星州、俄亥俄州和北卡罗来纳州等州仍有可能出现意料之外的结果,尽管共和党人占据明显优势。

By any historical perspective, it would be hard to explain if the Democrats managed to hold both chambers of Congress. No president with an approval rating under 50 percent has seen his party gain House seats in a midterm election, dating to the dawn of modern polling. But this is not exactly an ordinary moment in American history. Partisan polarization is extreme. Many Democratic voters perceive that democracy is under threat. Others are furious about the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade. In another midterm election, these voters might have stayed home. This cycle, they may well vote. And a critical sliver of voters dissatisfied with Mr. Biden and Democrats might feel they have no choice but to vote against Republicans.

如果民主党成功拿下了参众两院,那么不管从怎样的历史角度来看,都很难解释这件事。自现代民调开始以来,没有一位支持率低于50%的总统在中期选举中看到他的政党拿下众议院。但眼下并非美国历史上的一个普通时刻。党派两极分化愈发极端。许多民主党选民认为民主正受到威胁。还有人对最高法院推翻“罗诉韦德案”的决定感到愤怒。若是在其他的时候,这些选民可能不会出来参加中期选举的投票。这一次,他们很可能会投票。对拜登和民主党不满的一小部分关键选民可能会觉得,他们别无选择,只能投票反对共和党。

Democratic strength among highly educated voters would most likely be a critical part of any upset. Not only are these voters well represented in key battleground districts, but they’re also likelier to make up a larger share of the electorate in a low-turnout midterm election. It’s a tendency that might cut against the usual pattern for the president’s party to suffer from low turnout. At the same time, Democrats would need relatively disaffected elements of their party’s base — Black, Hispanic and young voters — to come home down the stretch.

若要爆出冷门,民主党在受过良好教育的选民中的优势极有可能成为关键因素。这些选民不仅在关键的摇摆选区得到了充分代表,而且在投票率低的中期选举中,他们也更可能占据更大的选民份额。这一趋势也许有悖于总统所在政党受制于低投票率的常规情形。同时,民主党需要相对有所不满的票仓——黑人、西语裔和年轻选民——助力最终的冲刺。

The possibility of the polls erring in this way might also seem hard to imagine. After all, polls have underestimated Republicans in recent cycles. But historically, there isn’t much of a relationship between polling error in one election and the next. The pollsters who did poorly either adjust or drop out. The pollsters who did well one year feel emboldened the next. And that does seem to be happening this cycle.

民调出现这种偏差的可能性似乎也难以想象。毕竟,在最近的选举周期中,民调都低估了共和党。但从历史上看,连续两次选举的民调误差并没有太大关联。表现不佳的民调机构要么调整,要么出局。前一年表现好的到第二年可能会更加大胆。如今的选举周期可能就出现了这种情况。

The traditional pollsters who underestimated Republicans the most in 2020 have significantly reduced their polling this cycle or stopped altogether. Other pollsters are doing everything they can to ensure a more Republican-leaning sample, including by means that would have been scorned a few years ago. And then there’s the flood of state polls by Republican firms, showing eye-popping results like a Republican lead for New York governor.

2020年低估共和党最多的传统民调机构,在目前这个周期大幅减少或完全停止了调查。其他民调机构则尽其所能确保一个更倾向共和党的抽样样本,用上了一些在几年前会被嗤之以鼻的方法。此外,还有共和党机构在各州进行的大量民调,得出了诸如共和党在纽约州州长竞选中领先的惊人结果。

All of this may add up to far more accurate polling averages than in 2020. But if pollsters overcorrect — or if the balance of pollsters has shifted too far toward the Republican-leaning outfits — there would be a chance that the polls underestimate Democrats.

所有这些因素都可能导致今年的民调平均值会比2020年更准确。但如果民调机构矫枉过正,或是天平过于倾向共和党,那民调结果可能就会低估民主党。

Indeed, many traditional polls still show signs of Democratic strength. To take one recent example: Marist College released polls showing Democrats ahead in Pennsylvania and Arizona, and leading among registered voters in Georgia. Siena College showed Democrats faring quite well in several critical House races in New York State that one might have thought were leaning toward Republicans in this national environment.

事实上,许多传统民调仍显示出民主党强势的迹象。举一个最近的例子:马里斯特学院公布的民调显示,民主党在宾夕法尼亚和亚利桑那州领先,在佐治亚州的登记选民中领先。锡耶纳学院的民调显示,民主党在纽约州几场关键的众议院选举中表现不错,在当前的大环境下,人们可能以为这些地方会倾向共和党。

On Tuesday night, if Democrats are on track to greatly exceed expectations, the signs would show up pretty early. The Senate races in North Carolina, Wisconsin and Ohio will all largely be decided on election night. If Democrats remain highly competitive in all three or even win one, it will be a clear sign that this isn’t the simple Republican win that analysts long expected.

周二晚上民主党的表现能否远超预期,很早就能看出端倪。北卡罗来纳、威斯康辛和俄亥俄州的参议院选举基本都会在选举夜尘埃落定。如果民主党这三个州的选战都很激烈,或是甚至在其中一州胜选,将会成为一个明确的迹象,表明这场选举不会是分析人士长期以来预测的简单的共和党胜利。
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