Dems on track to win control of House

Lester Mason
November 8, 2018

But blue-collar voters and rural America embraced his aggressive talk and stances.

Amid the recent rash of letter bombs and the Pittsburgh synagogue massacre, Trump issued alarming and often unfounded warnings about caravans of migrants crossing Mexico toward the USA, blaming Democrats, without evidence, for the threat he claimed they pose.

But the Democrats' edge is narrow.

Trump was expected to address the results at a post-election news conference scheduled for midday Wednesday.

A Democratic majority in the House would break the GOP's monopoly on power in Washington and give the party a check on Trump's agenda. It wasn't clear what "leaks" he was referring to.

"Today is more than about Democrats and Republicans".

As of Friday night, nearly 32.4 million people had cast ballots early across the United States, according to The Election Project at the University of Florida, which tracks turnout. Among those expected were Trump's adult children, White House aides, Republican officials and presidential friends. Trump had been tweeting support for specific GOP candidates, even as he acknowledged potential losses by emphasizing that his focus was on the Senate.

Record diversity on the ballot may have helped drive turnout. She could be joined by Minnesota's Ilhan Omar, who is also trying to become the first Muslim woman elected to Congress along with the first Somali-American elected to the House.

The party drew blood in IN, ousting one-term Democrat Joe Donnelly in a state that had been seen as a must-win for Democrats seeking to gain control of the upper chamber. An open seat that included Atlantic City was also ripe for Democratic pickup by state lawmaker Jeff Van Drew after the GOP campaign committee abandoned Republican Seth Grossman over racially charged comments.

Another demographic factor key to the Democrats is the number of women voters. Democratic incumbents prevailed in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin, which Trump carried narrowly.


For Democrats, the road to the 218-seat majority ran through two dozen suburban districts Hillary Clinton won in 2016 and through swaths of Trump country in the Rust Belt and heartland where voters backed the president. Democrats flipped seats in suburban districts outside of Washington, Philadelphia, Miami, Chicago and Denver.

"I don't think there's a Democrat in this country that doesn't have a little angst left over from 2016 deep down", said Stephanie Schriock, president of Emily's List, which spent more than ever before, almost 60 million U.S. dollars in all, to support Democratic women this campaign season. Billionaire Michael Bloomberg, who advocates gun control, poured millions into House races for Democrats, offsetting the big-dollar spending to save Republicans by the Congressional Leadership Fund, which is aligned with House Speaker Paul Ryan.

Meanwhile, Republicans Mike Braun and Kevin Cramer won Democratic-held Senate seats in IN and North Dakota, ousting incumbents Joe Donnelly and Heidi Heitkamp.

Some hurt worse than others.

All 435 seats in the U.S. House were up for re-election, although fewer than 90 were considered competitive.

"Things are pretty good, yet we have all this division and we have this president who's relatively unpopular, so we have this unusual juxtaposition", said Kent State politics professor Michael Ensley, citing Trump's poor approval ratings despite a rollicking USA economy and the absence of any major foreign-policy challenges. Twenty-five percent described health care and immigration as the most important issues in the election. Several television networks, including the president's favorite Fox News Channel, yanked a Trump campaign advertisement off the air on the eve of the election, determining that its portrayal of a murderous immigrant went too far.

One of Trump's most vocal defenders on immigration, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, lost his bid for governor. He served as vice chairman of Trump's now-defunct commission on voter fraud.

The president's current job approval, set at 40 percent by Gallup, was the lowest at this point of any first-term president in the modern era. Majority votes in both the Senate and the House are needed to pass laws.

Meanwhile, the close of the 2018 midterm season marked the unofficial opening of the next presidential contest.

Vermont independent Sen. Bernie Sanders and Democrats Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Kirsten Gillibrand of NY and Minnesota's Amy Klobuchar were easily re-elected.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

Discuss This Article

FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER