WASHINGTON (AP) — Democrats didn't catch a blue wave. But they managed the next best thing: Divided government in the Trump era.
House Democrats won back the majority for the first time since the 2010 elections. Helped by President Donald Trump, Republicans captured Senate seats in Indiana, Missouri and North Dakota to maintain a narrow advantage.
In the Great Lakes region, Democrats secured governors' offices in Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania, complicating the president's re-election campaign in an area that propelled him to victory in 2016. But Trump helped Republicans claim governors' seats in Ohio and in Florida, where his hand-picked choice, Ron DeSantis, edged Andrew Gillum in the state's high-profile governors' race.
Tuesday's midterm elections offered something for everyone. Democrats will control the House, but Trump will point to GOP success in the Senate as proof that he defied the odds and avoided the type of midterm wipeout that afflicted his predecessor, former President Barack Obama.
Yet Trump's administration will now face intense scrutiny from House Democrats and a slew of subpoenas and document requests of his Cabinet — not to mention a renewed push for the president's tax returns. And as special counsel Robert Mueller presses forward with the Russia investigation, the most liberal members of the Democratic caucus are expected to sound the alarm for the president's impeachment.
Some takeaways from Tuesday's election:
Democrats posted gains in House seats representing the nation's suburbs, with many college-educated women turned off by Trump's first two years. Republicans strengthened their grip on the country's rural and exurban areas, helping them defeat red-state Senate Democrats. The results could lead to more standoffs in Congress — there's already the possibility of a partial federal government shutdown in December over spending for Trump's signature border wall. And the outcome will produce fewer moderate lawmakers who can straddle the divide. West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, a centrist Democrat, won re-election, but he will be the exception, not the norm.
Trump allies dealt major blows to three of the Democrats' breakout stars of the 2018 cycle. Democrat Beto O'Rourke lost to Sen. Ted Cruz in Texas. Gillum lost his bid to become Florida's first black governor to DeSantis, whose public support from Trump propelled the former congressman to the top of the primary field. And Stacey Abrams' campaign to become Georgia's governor — and the nation's first-ever black female governor — was trailing early Wednesday against Brian Kemp, who was also helped along by a critical Trump endorsement. Abrams declined to concede the race, pointing to votes that still needed to be counted and suggesting a likely runoff.
Celebs vote in 2018 Midterm elections
Celebs vote in 2018 Midterm elections
I did it. Now it’s your turn. Tuesday 11/6. #VOTE
I’m feeling grateful for everyone before me who fought so hard to give us all the right to have a voice. We can’t voice our frustrations and complain about what’s wrong without voting and exercising our power to make it right. We need you. We all need each other, because when we are truly united we are unstoppable. Sending you all love and positivity on this happy voting day!
Every vote counts
Every race matters
I Voted! 🇺🇸 ✅ How about you?!
On the off chance you forgot, #VOTE. #ElectionDay #MidtermElections2018
Every #vote counts. 🇺🇸
For all of our ancestors that fought and died and lived and survived and created everything we now have access to, I bow down in deep deep honor. We are proud to be your wildest dream and we won’t let you down!!!! Let’s keep it up we are awake, aware, growing and powerful!! #votewithus 💥💥💥 (check my story)
⬆️These two Tennessee women⬆️ voted for the candidate who has proven himself to be reasonable and trustworthy. We want leadership, not fear-based extremism. Early voting goes til Thursday and Election Day is November 6. Please don’t sit this one out.
We voted ❤️🇺🇸
It’s a right not to be taken for granted so I did it a day early and I’m gonna rock this sticker all day. #votevotevote
The antidote to Hate... VOTE your love!
What a birthday! I just smoked a huge bowl of early voting. #JustVoted @whenweallvote
I did it! Felt soooooo good. #Vote #whenweallvote #WeMatter
I. AM. A. VOTER. Proud to use my voice, and exercise my RIGHT to VOTE! @iamavoter #vote #midterms
Need a ride to the polls? We will pick you up in a party bus, give you some snacks, and let you pick the playlist. Just ask Harry & Bob 🇺🇸 #VOTE
10.15.18 Early Voted ✔️ And I’m still helping organize pals and strangers alike to get out the vote! My #votingsquad is STRONG!! How’s yours? Make a plan, talk it through, and vote together!
CONFUSED ABOUT BALLOT MEASURES!? (I know, there’s a lot!) Check out VoteSaveAmerica.com for all the facts and easy breakdowns of ballot measures in YOUR state! •
Thank you to my soul sister squad @ridershop @conniebritton @mspackyetti @jsmizzie @vanessamagos @nialauryn @ruthielindsey @alextcooks @mandanadayani @abbywambach and @glennondoyle. We got boys too! @jedidiahjenkins @kennyjamez @glassofwhiskey @wakingupwithryan @princeflips @get ardocelasco and more. Like I said. My squad is serious! We really love America! #WhenWeAllVote (swipe to hear from the First Lady of Voting herself, @michelleobama!) #GOTV #VOTE #WhenWeAllVote #IAmAVoter
Thank you 14th & 19th Amendment for letting me vote today! Comment or tag yourself if you feel the same!
I voted today for my baby right here and his future!!!
Go be awesome and VOTE YOUR FRIGGIN FACE OFF!
TODAY IS THE DAY. Don’t let anything stop you from voting. Make your voice heard. Every single vote counts. #VoteOrDie
Our son was disappointed because he thought we were going to “boat” but otherwise a success! #Vote
@whenweallvote #yourvotematters #midterms #voteforyourfuture #whenweallvote #LAsFinest @gabunion #votevotevote -take a photo after you vote 🗳-tag me and use hashtag #postthevote you could be featured on my IG :)
ELECTION DAY EVE ~ 🌊 🗳🙏🏾✊🏾
I voted because I care deeply about representation, education, criminal justice, healthcare, truth, equity and so many other things that are at stake.
If I could vote in Georgia or Florida, I’d vote for @staceyabrams or @andrewgillum! Why are you voting?
Sweatshirt by @phenomenal.ly
I am so grateful to be home in time to vote! One vote can make a difference, so make sure your voice is heard!🗳 🇺🇸 now go out and #VOTE!!!!
You’d think I’d be all set to vote right? Here’s a little story: I had to enter my info 4 times before the state site confirmed I was registered! This is how passionate I am about using my voice and my right to vote. You have to have the patience and interest in getting to the polls tomorrow. They think young people don’t vote, latinos don’t vote, women dont vote, PROVE THEM WRONG!!! This election affects us ALL. VOTE. It’s so important that ALL of our voices are heard, not just a few... we live in a beautiful country where we all have a say!!! I urge all of you PLEASE get out there and vote, there are so many issues at stake these elections!! And they affect us all in our daily lives in some way! If you are frustrated by what you been seeing and hearing, you can change it!! You have the power!!! I HAVE A BUNCH OF VOTER INFO IN MY STORIES TO HELP YOU!! #GOVOTE #VOTA #ELECTIONEVE #VOTETUESDAY
Let your voice be heard!!!
It’s #TheLastWeekend to get out there and get involved! My absentee ballot’s in... make sure you GO VOTE on Tuesday!! Remember: NO voting booth selfies 😂 More info in bio.
Todos tenemos por lo menos una razón para votar el 6 de noviembre. Para mis amigos en Texas, yo estoy con @betoorourke! Como madre latina, sé que tengo que votar.
Yo voy a votar porque mi voto es mi voz. ¿Y tú? ¿Por qué vas a votar @georgelopez?
Haz tu video con tu smartphone diciendo por qué vas a votar el 6 de noviembre y compártelo. /// We ALL have at least one reason to vote on November 6. To all my fellow Texans: I stand with @betoorourke! As a Latina, I know I have to vote.
I’m voting because my vote is my voice.
And you? Why are you going to vote @georgelopez?
Make a video with your smartphone stating why you are voting on November 6 and share it.
#LatinasenMarcha #YoVoyAVotar #LatinosStandUp #MidtermsMatter
Happy Election Day- Let's all do our part and get out and vote today! 🗳🇺🇸It's also #homebodydesignbook launch day! You can watch us this morning on the @today show during the 8 o'clock hour in your time zone.
Today’s the day. Make your voice heard and VOTE. Need a ride? Both @uber and @lyft are offering free rides to the polls! Check out their socials for details. #vote
I JUST VOTED IN MY STATE OF FLORIDA!!!!!!!! ELECTION DAY IS NOVEMBER 6 AND EARLY VOTING GOES TO NOVEMBER 4. GO TO VOTE.ORG TO FIND YOUR NEAREST POLLING PLACE, THIS WEBSITE’S INFORMATION IS SO CLEAR AND EASY TO UNDERSTAND. I AM SORRY FOR THE CAPITALS, I JUST FEEL REALLY EXCITED THAT I JUST VOTED BECAUSE I FEEL LIKE IM TAKING MY FRUSTRATION AT THE INJUSTICES THAT HAPPEN IN OUR COUNTRY AND TURNING IT INTO ACTION!!! EVERY SINGLE ONE OF US CAN TURN THOSE FEELINGS INTO ACTION WHEN WE SHOW UP TO VOTE. ONE VOTE CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE. WE CAN CONTRIBUTE AND HELP WRITE THE STORY OF OUR COUNTRY JUST BY TAKING A FEW MINUTES OUT OF OUR DAY TO VOTE!!! ALSO ITS MY GRANDMAS FIRST TIME VOTING IN THE UNITED STATES AND SHE DID HER RESEARCH AND PREPARED HERSELF AND WE ARE ALL FEELING SO GOOD !!! LETS. GOOOO. LETS VOTE! ➡️➡️➡️➡️➡️➡️➡️VOTE.ORG.
November 6th is our day to say women are never going away, so get used to it.
Ok, Ladies (& gentlemen), now let’s get in formation! 👯♀️👯♀️👯♂️Tomorrow is Election Day! Grab your friends and vote!!!! Find your voting location at Vote.org @votedotorg
This is another moment to stand for Standing Rock. Native people are here, they’re resilient, and despite the laws trying to suppress them, they’re ready to vote. Text 788683 to take the #StandNVote pledge. Let’s bring this home.
I voted early and so can you! Go to vote.org and please vote. Please. (The sticker looks janky cuz it was stuck to the backing and I had to cut it out carefully otherwise it would have ripped. A great metaphor for our democracy! Vote dammit!)
I AM GOING TO ASK YOU IF YOU VOTED TODAY AND IF YOU ALREADY DID THEN ASK EVERYONE AROUND YOU IF THEY DID BECAUSE THERE IS NO EXCUSE, I HAVE RESORTED TO SHOUTING IN ALL CAPS SO PLEASE VOTE AND I WILL STOP THE CAPS
We voted! And we agreed on this photo!
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BACK TO SLIDE
Trump has taunted the potential 2020 Democratic field as lacking any talent or the ability to give him a serious challenge. He will soon find out. Three potential candidates, Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Kirsten Gillibrand, all won re-election to the Senate. Former Vice President Joe Biden and Sens. Kamala Harris of California and Cory Booker of New Jersey were among the most sought-after surrogates during the fall campaign. O'Rourke's star power and massive fundraising haul generated chatter as a possible 2020 candidate — win or lose — but he said in the final days he wouldn't run in 2020. Despite Trump's dismissive approach, he will enter his re-election as an incumbent who lost the popular vote in 2016 and staring down key states — Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin — now under Democratic control.
REBUILDING THE BLUE WALL?
After Trump won several Midwest states that had long been in the Democratic column, the party had hoped to rebuild its Midwest "blue wall." Democrats made some progress, but just like the nature of the election, it was a split decision. Democrats picked up the governors' offices in Michigan and Wisconsin and kept control in Pennsylvania. But Republicans won the governors' races in Iowa and Ohio, giving Trump allies in two key presidential swing states. Remember, no Republican candidate for the presidency has ever won the election without winning Ohio.
After Hillary Clinton's defeat, more women than ever before won major-party primaries for governor, the Senate and the House this year. Tuesday's election produced a record number of women in the House and opened the door for women to hold state offices around the country. Democratic women like Abigail Spanberger of Virginia, Cindy Axne of Iowa and Haley Stevens of Michigan helped the party flip Republican-held seats in the House. Republican Marsha Blackburn won an open Senate seat in Tennessee and the Midwest elected two female governors: Kim Reynolds of Iowa, a Republican who won a full term after succeeding Terry Branstad, Trump's ambassador to China, and Laura Kelly of Kansas, a Democrat who defeated Republican Kris Kobach. Women voted considerably more in favor of their congressional Democratic candidate — with fewer than 4 in 10 voting for the Republican, according to VoteCast, a nationwide survey conducted for The Associated Press by NORC at the University of Chicago.
TRUMP THE CLOSER
Trump has long prided himself on the ability of his massive rallies to generate voter turnout and enthusiasm — and it paid off for him in the final days. The president staged rallies in five states — Georgia, Tennessee, Ohio, Indiana and Missouri — on the final two days of the campaign, helping his cause. In Georgia, Kemp was leading Abrams in the governor's race but no winner had been declared. Tennessee Rep. Marsha Blackburn won an open Senate seat. Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, a former senator, won the race for governor. In Indiana, businessman Mike Braun ousted Democratic Sen. Joe Donnelly. And Josh Hawley prevailed over Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill, giving Republicans another Senate pickup.
The night served as witness to a number of history-making breakthroughs — steps that will help make Congress younger and more diverse. In New York, 29-year-old Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez became the youngest woman elected to Congress. Democrats Ilhan Omar of Minnesota and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan will be the first Muslim women to serve in Congress. Kristi Noem will become the first woman from South Dakota to serve as her state's governor. The House will have two Native American women for the first time: New Mexico's Deb Haaland and Kansas' Sharice Davids, who will also become her state's first openly LGBT candidate to hold major office. And regardless of who wins in Arizona's competitive Senate race, the state will elect its first woman to serve in the chamber.