The much-anticipated US midterms have seen the Republicans lose their majority hold over the House of Representatives; while maintaining control of the Senate. And while President Donald Trump’s detractors are keen for this result to be taken as an indictment of his tenure so far — the truth is that it is not unusual for incumbents to lose their congressional grip. Just ask Barrack Obama. Be that as it may, these polls were different from previous ones. For the simple and welcome reason is that a ground-breaking number of women entered the electoral race. This translated into a total of 237 running for the House; ultimately securing a record 84 seats out of a total of 435. But even more than this was the sheer diversity of backgrounds in terms of ethnicity and class. Thereby prompting some pundits to declare 2018: The Year of Every Woman. And, for many, this alone represents rejection enough of the Trump agenda; a least when viewed through a collective lens. Particularly when it comes to the President’s staunch stand against immigration that has lurched towards impossible brutality and cruelty. And while the man in the hot seat spent much of the last two years busy implementing an anti-Muslim travel ban and inflaming passions in this part of the world with his unilateral Jerusalem shuffle — Congress is now home to two women Muslim lawmakers for the first time in its history. Rashida Tlaib is the daughter of Palestinian immigrants and Ilnan Omar arrived in the US as a teen having fled the Somalian civil war. These are significant victories. Both for women of colour and for religious minorities. Indeed, the list goes on. From 29-year-old Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who is of Puerto Rican heritage, and is now the youngest woman ever to be elected to Congress. To Deb Haalnad and Sharice Davids; the joint first Native American women to become lawmakers. Not forgetting Ayanna Pressley; the first-ever black Congresswomen. And we, here at Daily Times, feel that is important to honour these trailblazing women by proudly naming them. Now that the Democrats have control of the lower House it is expected that they will increase pressure on Trump; especially when it comes the question of alleged Russian involvement in the elections that brought him to power. Or indeed, personal tax records. That being said, the warm glow of holding the House after eight long years in the political wilderness ought to be rapidly replaced to by cold steel pragmatism. For the Democrats cannot afford to pursue the path of confrontation. Not with a President that is used to going it alone. Indeed, this is something that he shares with his predecessor. For when Barrack Obama was similarly crushed in 2014 — he simply vowed to bypass Congress and rely on his executive authority to overhaul immigration by allowing millions of the undocumented to stay in the country. That being said, the major difference between the two remains the fact that Obama reserved his hawkish tendencies for the realm of foreign policy. Such as the increased drone programme here in Pakistan. By contrast, the incumbent Trump polarises at home and abroad in equal measure. Thus the Democrats have a duty of care to the American citizenry to not just tame presidential powers — but the president himself. * Published in Daily Times, November 8th 2018.