Democrats capture House, GOP holds Senate

Democrats on Tuesday captured the House of Representatives to exert a major institutional check on President Donald Trump and break the Republican monopoly on power in Washington.

Posted: Nov 6, 2018 9:49 PM
Updated: Nov 7, 2018 12:00 AM

(CNN) -- Democrats on Tuesday captured the House of Representatives for the first time in eight years to exert a major institutional check on President Donald Trump and break the Republican monopoly in power in Washington.

But the GOP solidified their Senate majority after an acerbic midterm election that enshrined America's deep political divides and shaped a highly contentious battleground for the stirring 2020 presidential race.

In his first reaction to a mixed night, Trump chose to celebrate Republican successes.

"Tremendous success tonight. Thank you to all!" he tweeted.

The loss of the House is a serious blow to Trump who must now brace for the novel experience of oversight from Capitol Hill with Democratic committee chairmen promising constraints on his power that the GOP never attempted. Within minutes of their victory being confirmed, Democrats were already threatening to go after Trump's tax returns.

Democratic Rep. Jerrold Nadler, who is slated to steer the House Judiciary Committee warned that the election was about accountability for Trump.

"He's going to learn that he's not above the law," Nadler told CNN.

Democrats won the House, which will change hands for the third time in 12 volatile years, by performing strongly in suburban areas where Trump's flaming rhetoric is toxic. They also attracted a higher proportion of younger voters than at the last midterm elections four years ago and their new lawmakers will make the House younger, more female and more diverse.

"We have the beginning of a new Democratic Party, younger, browner, cooler, more women, more veterans, can win in Michigan, can win in Pennsylvania, can win in Ohio," said Van Jones, a CNN political commentator.

"It may not be a blue wave, it's a rainbow wave," he said.

A CNN/SSRS poll released Monday showed Democrats with a gaping 55% to 42% lead over Republicans among likely voters in a generic congressional ballot. Trump was badly underwater among women voters -- who favor Democrats 62% to 35% -- a gender gap, that if borne out by real votes, could prove devastating to Republican hopes.

The race they ran

But Republicans performed strongly in the deep red states where Trump mounted a frenetic final campaign blitz and proved that despite his low approval rating he remains a potent political force among conservatives.

And keeping hold of the Senate is especially important for Trump since it will give the White House the chance to press on with one of his major legacy-building initiatives, restocking the federal judiciary with conservatives.

Still, Trump will also have to answer for a scorched earth campaign on immigration in the final days that might have helped tip the House to Democrats, even if he can argue that his magnetism among his followers' candidates, such as Rep. Ron DeSantis, who won the Florida gubernatorial race, according to a CNN projection, Marsha Blackburn who will capture the Tennessee Senate race and Mike Braun, who defeated the incumbent Democratic Sen. Joe Donnelly in Indiana.

The opposite trends in the House and the Senate speak to the quirks of the political system but also the growing divide between urban, diverse, more affluent Democratic areas and largely white, rural conservative regions.

The loss of the House spells the end of a political era for Republicans who rode into town on a Tea Party wave whipped up by fury over Obamacare and huge government spending in the wake of the Great Recession.

The Republican majority will leave town with Obamacare still the law of the land and with a deficit going through the roof on the back of GOP tax cuts.

In theory, the new Democratic majority would have the capacity to initiate impeachment proceedings against Trump should there be sufficient grounds in Robert Mueller's special counsel investigation. Though the Republican gains in the Senate make it even less likely that there would be a two-thirds majority needed to convict a president and evict him from office.

Waiting for results

The President had dinner with his family and watched the results, which could have a profound impact on the rest of his term and could reshape Washington's balance of power, in the residence of the White House.

He was joined by Republican megadonor Sheldon Adelson, Blackstone CEO Stephen Schwarzman and the President's ex-campaign aides, David Bossie and Corey Lewandowski, a source familiar with the guest list said.

Two other sources close to the White House said that Trump is already blaming retiring House Speaker Paul Ryan for the loss of the House.

"He is really angry at Ryan," one source said on "everything."

Alongside all 435 House seats and a third of the Senate on the ballot on Tuesday were 36 gubernatorial races. Democrats suffered losses in Florida and Maryland where Democrats had hoped for pickups.

The-CNN-Wire
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Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 295357

Reported Deaths: 5305
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion40796844
Lake25864448
Allen17025289
Elkhart16389209
St. Joseph16125217
Hamilton12225163
Vanderburgh9218112
Tippecanoe807627
Porter770176
Johnson5971161
Hendricks5719154
Vigo563274
Monroe519846
Clark486774
Delaware4721103
Madison4651119
Kosciusko437339
LaPorte436792
Howard321375
Warrick309072
Floyd301177
Bartholomew296262
Wayne292261
Cass291231
Marshall283642
Grant254147
Noble244246
Hancock238949
Henry234136
Boone231754
Dubois229230
Dearborn204629
Jackson200033
Morgan196043
Gibson171622
Knox170715
Clinton170420
Shelby170453
Lawrence169246
DeKalb168428
Adams160019
Miami150414
Daviess149143
Wabash148118
Fayette141233
Steuben139713
LaGrange135127
Jasper134911
Harrison134624
Montgomery127926
Whitley127410
Ripley121414
Decatur119842
Posey116613
Putnam115626
Wells115427
Huntington115210
White115221
Randolph114619
Clay111821
Jefferson110314
Scott97918
Greene97553
Jay93012
Starke87021
Sullivan85515
Perry80521
Spencer7957
Jennings79114
Fulton78717
Fountain7257
Washington6966
Carroll65313
Orange64828
Franklin63525
Owen5676
Vermillion5662
Newton53412
Parke5296
Tipton52826
Blackford50011
Rush5006
Pike49618
Pulaski36410
Martin3425
Brown3153
Benton3101
Crawford2711
Union2551
Switzerland2453
Warren2272
Ohio2227
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Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 351419

Reported Deaths: 5996
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin48389665
Cuyahoga34096734
Hamilton28674371
Montgomery19082225
Butler14138144
Lucas13446406
Summit12431309
Stark8122197
Warren770375
Mahoning6772299
Lake625466
Lorain590297
Clermont541946
Delaware521435
Licking506275
Fairfield505163
Trumbull4969144
Greene489662
Clark486664
Marion451451
Allen446384
Wood4243107
Medina413354
Miami398565
Pickaway387948
Columbiana328496
Portage323171
Wayne303593
Tuscarawas299557
Richland293929
Mercer281237
Ross234559
Hancock225336
Muskingum223610
Auglaize218925
Putnam218649
Darke208058
Erie205565
Ashtabula204753
Geauga189451
Scioto186713
Lawrence181336
Athens17954
Union17928
Shelby176715
Seneca165018
Belmont151529
Madison151018
Sandusky144427
Preble143821
Huron139218
Holmes137039
Defiance131121
Knox118818
Logan118313
Fulton117225
Ottawa114730
Crawford114216
Washington112427
Clinton100314
Williams9938
Jefferson9894
Ashland98322
Highland96317
Henry94422
Brown9324
Champaign8935
Jackson87312
Fayette86617
Van Wert8596
Morrow8312
Hardin82518
Guernsey79213
Coshocton78813
Perry73312
Pike7081
Adams70611
Wyandot68916
Gallia68113
Paulding61710
Hocking58511
Noble56121
Carroll41610
Meigs36312
Monroe29921
Morgan2342
Vinton2075
Harrison1823
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