President Trump immediately set his sights on re-election in 2020 yesterday after claiming to have "defied history" by making gains in United States midterm elections even as his party lost control of one chamber of Congress. Kristi Noem won the election to become South Dakota's first female governor.
All 435 seats in the House were up for re-election and while the Republicans maintained their control of the Senate, the Democrats will now be able to dramatically shape the remainder of Trump's first term in the White House.
In the Senate, Democrats were facing an uphill battle because they were defending 26 races, while just nine Republican seats were up for grabs. The Republicans' three-seat expansion is a contrast to the 18 total seats lost by the Democrats in midterm elections in the Senate since 2010. Democratic candidates beat Republican incumbents in suburbs on the outskirts of major USA cities in Virginia, New York and Minnesota.
But in some other toss-up races, the GOP managed to hold on.
As of early Wednesday, Democrats had won 219 races and the Republicans 193, with winners undetermined in 23 races. Still, she was within striking distance in a Lexington-area district Trump won by 15 percentage points in 2016.
And outside Richmond, Virginia, one-time tea party favorite Rep. Dave Brat lost to Democrat Abigail Spanberger, a former Central Intelligence Agency operative motivated to run for office after the GOP vote to gut the Affordable Care Act. And in New Jersey, Democrats re-elected embattled Sen.
With control of the House, the Democrats now have powers to subpoena and investigate allegations of corruption and misconduct by officials in the Trump administration, including the president himself. In addition, at least 13 women won Senate seats.
Trump sparred with reporters at the post-election news conference, ordering several to sit down and telling CNN's Jim Acosta he was a "rude, terrible" person and "enemy of the people".
Of the special counsel's Russian Federation investigation that has shadowed his administration for more than 18 months, Trump said, "I could end it right now" but "I let it go on".
Democrats were at a disadvantage heading into the midterms, holding most of the seats up for election in the Senate even as they were expected to take the House.
"As president, Donald J. Trump has headlined an unprecedented 50 rallies - 30 in the last two months alone - and he has campaigned for dozens of candidates at all levels of government", White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement Tuesday evening. That could help Democrats because younger voters tend to lean their way.
The result confirms a historical trend for the party that is not in the White House to make gains in the mid-terms. He was active on Twitter throughout much of the day, blasting out endorsements for Republican candidates and weighing in on the balloting. It was about restoring the Constitution and providing a balance to the Trump administration.
Thank President Trump and Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh for the red wall that reduced the blue wave to nearly a ripple.
Bill Nelson, D-Fla. will be the second Democrat to lose his Finance committee seat if he fails to overtake incumbent Gov. Rick Scott in a potential Florida Senate recount.
Perhaps with this in mind, Trump tweeted: "In all fairness, Nancy Pelosi deserves to be chosen Speaker of the House by the Democrats". The president endorsed Nancy Pelosi to be the speaker of the House and said that the two parties are equally invested in delivering legislation on infrastructure, health care, prescription drug prices, and veterans affairs. "Do not let their scare tactics frighten you away from the polls". If anything, he may well double down on his nativist message, because it didn't hurt the Republican campaigns across many states. Like other Democrats across the country, Spanberger emphasized protecting people with pre-existing conditions from being denied coverage or charged more by insurers. They will control the chamber beginning in January when new members are sworn in.
"In the end, we hold the House because of the strong economy", the Louisiana Republican told The Associated Press on the eve of Election Day.
Trump's team immediately sought to give him credit for retaining their narrow Senate majority, even as their foothold in the more competitive House battlefield appeared to be slipping.
"Trump is improving the economy - that's the most important thing for me", Rivera said.
But historical precedent suggests that an aggressive strategy targeting the president may backfire come 2020. Sen. Meantime, close statewide races in Arizona, Georgia and Texas indicated that they may become swing states sooner rather than later.
The campaign will be the most expensive midterm in history, projected by the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics to exceed $5 billion. At least 255 women were on the ballot as major party congressional candidates.