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Jonathan Bernstein

Question Day: So What If Majority Parties Lose?

Democrats lost Congress even though they got more total votes than Republicans did in the 2014 election. This is fair.
Al Gore can relate.

Al Gore can relate.

Photographer: Mark Wilson/Newsmakers

Commenter Davis X. Machina asks about numbers cited in a recent Vox piece on Congress. If you add up the results of the 2010, 2012 and 2014 elections, 46 Democrats in the Senate got a lot more votes than 54 Republican senators. And in the 2012 results for House elections, Republicans held their majority even though Democratic candidates won more overall votes.

What, the reader asks, are the long-term consequences of this?