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Republicans See Modest Gains in Midterms, Democrats Hold Key States

Published: November 10, 2022
Clark County Election Department workers process polling place equipment and materials as they arrive at the Clark County Election Department after polls closed on November 08, 2022 in North Las Vegas, Nevada. (Image: Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

The GOP appears poised to take the U.S. House of Representatives, maintain its position in the Senate, and see a slight setback in gubernatorial races across America as the final votes from the Nov. 8 midterm election continue to be tallied. 

Democrats won 185 seats in the House to the Republicans’ 208 as of morning Nov. 10 (Thursday), while the GOP held 48 Senate positions to the Democrats’ 46, though some races have yet to be called. So far, the Democrats have gained two new governors at the expense of two Republican state leaders. 

In New York state, Republican Lee Zeldin mounted a serious challenge to incumbent Democrat Gov. Kathy Hochul, getting over 47 percent of the vote in large part by convincing voters of the need to correct cashless bail laws that are correlated with a surge in crime. 

Additionally, the Republicans picked up five competitive House seats in the state — notable given that New York is a traditional bastion of Democrat control. 

Zeldin’s performance was mirrored in another deep-blue state, Oregon, where persistent homelessness and disorder in the streets of Portland endeared many voters to GOP candidate Christine Drazan. At the time of writing, however, it is likely that she will lose to the Democrat’s Tina Kotek, who is leading with nearly 47 percent of the vote. 

The “red wave” predicted by many but fell short of expectations was largely manifested in Florida, where incumbent populist Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) was elected for a second four-year term with 59.4 percent of the vote. Republican Sen. Marco Rubio also received another stint. 

Things did not go as well for the nation’s mainstream conservative party in Pennsylvania — a key swing state — where neither Senate contender Mehmet Oz nor gubernatorial candidate Doglass Mastriano were able to come close to defeating their rivals, John Fetterman and Josh Shapiro, respectively. 

The “red wave” was expected in light of continuing economic downturns even following the end of most pandemic restrictions, especially rising inflation, housing prices, and expensive gas. The border crisis has also become more severe, with record numbers of illegal border crossings since President Joe Biden took office in 2021. 

On Twitter, Biden thanked young voters, who tended to vote Democrat, for turning out “in historic numbers … to continue addressing the climate crisis, gun violence, their personal rights and freedoms, and student debt relief.”

While some Republican figures lamented the lack of an appreciable GOP comeback, former President Donald Trump cheered what he called a “great evening” for his party. 

At a rally in Ohio on the eve of the midterms, Trump suggested that he would announce a bid to take the GOP presidential candidacy for 2024, saying that he is “going to be making a very big announcement on Tuesday, Nov. 15″ at his Florida resort, Mar-a-Lago. 

Democrats and major media celebrated their holdings as a victory for the country’s institutions. Meanwhile, Biden told reporters at a press conference on Wednesday that he would stay the course on his party’s economic, social, and foreign policy agendas. 

When a reporter asked Biden what he would change about his leadership, he responded, “Nothing, because they’re just finding out what we’re doing.”