At stake in this election:
- 33 seats in the Senate
- 435 seats in the House of Representatives
Description of government structure:
- Chief of State: President Barack OBAMA *
- Head of Government: President Barack OBAMA
- Assembly: United States has a bicameral Congress consisting of the Senate with 100 seats and the House of Representatives with 435 seats.
* The President is elected by absolute majority in the Electoral College to serve a 4-year term. Each state receives a number of Electoral College votes equal to its two Senators plus the number of seats it has in the House of Representatives, which is based on its population. Washington D.C. receives three electoral votes. A candidate must receive a majority of electoral votes (at least 270) to be elected president.
Description of electoral system:
- The President is elected by an electoral college to serve a 4-year term.
- In the Senate 100 members are elected by plurality vote in single-member constituencies to serve 6-year terms*. In the House of Representatives 435 members are elected by plurality vote in single-member constituencies to serve 2-year terms.
* One-third of Senate seats are up for election every two years.
Main parties in the electoral race:
- Party: Democratic Party
Leader: Nancy PELOSI
Seats won in last Senate election: 59
Seats won in last House of Representatives election: 193
- Party: Republican Party
Leader: Eric CANTOR
Seats won in last Senate election: 41
Seats won in last House of Representatives election: 242
Population and number of registered voters:
- Population: 313,847,465 (July 2012 est.)
- Registered Voters: 213,803,482 (November 2012 est.)