Republicans were edging closer to securing a majority in the U.S. House of Representatives early on Thursday, while control of the Senate hung in the balance.
Political signs are seen the day after the midterm elections in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S., November 9, 2022. Photo by Reuters/Rachel Wisniewski
Republicans had captured at least 210 House seats, Edison Research projected, eight short of the 218 needed to wrest the House away from Democrats and effectively halt President Joe Biden’s legislative agenda.
While Republicans remain favored, there were 33 House contests yet to be decided – including 21 of the 53 most competitive races, based on a Reuters analysis of the leading nonpartisan forecasters – likely ensuring the final outcome will not be determined for some time.
The fate of the Senate was far less certain. Either party could seize control by sweeping too-close-to-call races in Nevada and Arizona, where officials are methodically tallying thousands of uncounted ballots.
A split would mean the Senate majority would come down to a runoff election in Georgia for the second time in two years. Democratic incumbent Raphael Warnock and Republican challenger Herschel Walker both failed to reach 50% on Tuesday, forcing them into a one-on-one battle on Dec. 6.
Even a slim House majority would allow Republicans to shape the rest of Biden’s term, blocking priorities such as abortion rights and launching investigations into his administration and family.
For House races, Edison Research is tracking the net number of seats that flip from one party to another, as opposed to the net gain or loss of overall seats by either party.
The number of flips does not take into account seven new seats created during congressional redistricting and two races in which an incumbent Democrat and an incumbent Republican are facing each other due to redistricting.
So far, Republicans have won 210 seats in the 435-seat House and Democrats have won 191 seats, Edison projected.
Edison projected that Democrats had picked up one Senate seat, after calling Pennsylvania for John Fetterman, with 31 of 35 races called.
Coming into the night, Republicans needed to pick up one Senate seat to capture control of the chamber.
Biden says he plans to run again, to make it final in early 2023
U.S. President Joe Biden said on Wednesday he intends to run for re-election and would likely make a final decision by early next year, after declaring the results of Tuesday’s midterme lections good for democracy.
White House officials expressed a sense of vindication that Biden’s fellow Democrats did better than expected.
Biden, who turns 80 this month, has faced questions on whether he will seek a second term. A Biden adviser said preparatory discussions for a 2024 campaign were under way.
“Our intention is to run again, that’s been our intention,” Biden told reporters at the White House, his wife Jill sitting nearby. “This is ultimately a family decision.”
Biden said his family wanted him to run and he did not feel rushed to make a final decision. He said he would do so unrelated to any announcement from his 2020 rival, Republican former President Donald Trump, who is expected to run as well.
Biden has spent his first two years in office warning against threats to democracy after Trump’s supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, and did not accept Biden’s legitimate victory.
He underscored those arguments in the final days of the midterm elections.
When asked how other world leaders should view this moment for America, with Trump potentially running again, Biden said the answer was to make sure Trump never returned to power.
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