Republicans Win the Senate

Republicans have seized Senate control for the first time since George W. Bush administration.

Ben Ariel, | updated: 06:38

Midterm elections
Midterm elections
Reuters

Republicans have taken control of the Senate by picking up a seat in North Carolina and five other seats, according to a CNN projection.

Republicans also picked up Democratic-held seats in Colorado, Montana, South Dakota, Arkansas and West Virginia. CNN also projects Republicans will maintain their grip on the House of Representatives.

The Republicans earned their first pick-up of the election when Rep. Shelley Moore Capito easily won West Virginia’s Senate seat, noted the Washington Times.

Networks projected a win soon after the polls closed at 7:30 p.m. EST for Capito, a popular congresswoman who began a GOP trend in the state more than a decade ago.

She took the seat of Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV, a Democrat who had served for five terms but announced he would retire as the state trended toward the GOP.

Meanwhile, Republican Mike Rounds picked up a Democratic seat in South Dakota while in Arkansas, Iraq war veteran Tom Cotton grabbed the spot held by Democratic Sen. Mark Pryor.

If the Republicans indeed claim the Senate, it would for the first time they have done so since the administration of George W. Bush. A GOP win would be a mark a rebuke for President Barack Obama and could set the ideological battle lines for the 2016 presidential election, noted CNN.

In early ominous sign for the Democrats, Mitch McConnell, the Senate Republican leader, swiftly dispatched challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes in his re-election race.

Fox News has projected that the following Republicans incumbents will win re-election: Sen. Thad Cochran in Mississippi; Sen. Lamar Alexander in Tennessee; Sen. Susan Collins in Maine; Sen. Jeff Sessions in Alabama; and Sen. James Inhofe in Oklahoma. Fox News also can project that Republican James Lankford will win the seat being vacated by Republican Tom Coburn.

Fox News can also project, based on exit polling, that the following Democratic senators will win re-election: Sen. Dick Durbin in Illinois; Sen. Cory Booker in New Jersey; and Sen. Ed Markey in Massachusetts.

In Louisiana, the race for the seat currently held by Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu will go to a two-candidate runoff next month, according to a CNN projection.

Neither Landrieu nor Republican Bill Cassidy is expected to get the 50% of the vote needed to win outright.

Obama, who has dragged down many Democrats with his tarnished approval ratings, had already hinted it would be a gloomy night for Democrats.

"This is probably the worst possible group of states for Democrats since Dwight Eisenhower," Obama told WNPR radio in Connecticut Tuesday afternoon while polls were still open.

"There are a lot of states that are being contested where they just tend to tilt Republican," said Obama.

Exit poll data showed fierce contests in two of the closest Senate battles in North Carolina and Georgia. In North Carolina, according to exit polls, Democrat Sen. Kay Hagan has a slim lead over Republican challenger Thom Tillis.




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