Midterm election results: Democrats take control of House in setback for Republicans

High turnout expected in first nationwide elections since Donald Trump entered the White House

Chris Riotta
New York
Wednesday 07 November 2018 05:28 GMT
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The Democratic Party has reclaimed control of the House during the historic 2018 midterm elections, as the Republicans held onto their majority in the US Senate.

Voters flocked to the polls for the first time since Donald Trump was elected in 2016. In many ways, the midterms were seen as a referendum on his presidency — and with the Democratic Party’s victory comes numerous obstacles his administration will now face in attempting to push forward his conservative “America First” agenda.

Democrats flipped a slate of seats held by Republican incumbents in battleground states like Florida, Georgia and Texas, securing a significant majority that allows them to begin holding White House administration officials accountable, including the president.

Already, several Democrats have expressed an intention to demand the president’s tax returns, which Mr Trump refused to disclose during the 2016 general election.

The political and practical stakes were sky-high this year, as numerous Republicans faced a wave of progressive Democrats with bold agendas for their respective districts.

Tuesday’s elections also tested the strength of a Trump-era political realignment defined by evolving divisions among voters by race, gender, and especially education.

Democrats relied more upon women, people of colour, young people and college graduates to push them over the finish line.

Women voted considerably more in favour of their congressional Democratic candidate — with fewer than 4 in 10 voting for the Republican, according to VoteCast, a nationwide survey of more than 113,000 voters and about 20,000 non-voters.

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In suburban areas where key House races were decided, voters skewed significantly towards Democrats by a nearly 10-point margin.

The demographic divides were colouring the political landscape in different ways.

History was working against the president in the Senate: 2002 was the only midterm election in the past three decades when the party holding the White House gained Senate seats.

Additional reporting by AP.

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