Democrats will retain a majority in the US Senate in a big boost to Joe Biden’s presidency after Catherine Cortez Masto won re-election in Nevada.
According to the Associated Press Cortez Massto is predicted to beat Republican candidate Adam Laxalt. This race is one of the most competitive in the midterm elections.
Cortez Masto’s victory gave Democrats their 50th seat out of 100, enough to hold the majority given that Kamala Harris, the vice-president, can cast tiebreaking votes. It was after Democrat Mark KellyBlake Masters, a Trump-backed Republican candidate, was defeated by Blake Masters who won re-election.
The Nevada result means that a Georgia run-off between Raphael Warnock (the incumbent Democrat) and Herschel Walker (the former American football star running under a Republican) will not be as crucial to determining the majority. However, it could give Democrats an extra vote to pass legislation.
It is crucial for President Obama to keep the Senate with a Democratic edge. Joe Biden because it will allow him party to approve judicial nominees, executive branch appointments, and set the legislative agenda, even if Republicans take control of the House of Representatives. Although Senate control was always considered a toss-up, Cortez Masto has long been considered one of the Democrats’ most vulnerable incumbents.
“This election is a victory. A victory and a vindication: for Democrats, our agenda, and for the American people”, Chuck Schumer, the Senate majority leader said in remarks from New York City after the projections were made. “The American people rejected the anti-democratic extremist Maga Republicans,” he added, referring to candidates allied with former president Donald Trump.
Ron Klain, White House chief of staff, tweeted “50!!!!!!”.
Laxalt’s defeat marks the latest disappointment for Republicans who were hoping to make sweeping gains in the midterm elections. They were unable to keep up with the pace of change because voters were as concerned about losing their abortion rights and basic democratic values than they were about punishing Democrats for high price tags.
Republicans are struggling to reach the threshold of 218 votes they need to recapture the House of Representatives, with about 20 races in the lower chamber of Congress yet to be called — suggesting that at most they will have an exceedingly slim majority.
On Saturday, Democrats scored a big upset in a House race in Washington state, when Marie Gluesenkamp Pérez defeated Republican Joe Kent, a Republican aligned with former president Donald Trump. Jaime Herrera Beutler was defeated by him. She had voted for Trump’s impeachment after the attack on Capitol Hill on January 6th last year.
A surge in infighting among factions within Congress between Trump supporters and leaders of the Republican Party has resulted in the failure of the Republican to make major gains in midterm elections.
A group of Republicans who support Trump in the Senate asked for postponement of leadership elections until after the Georgia race-off. This could pose a threat to Mitch McConnell (the long-serving Republican leader in Congress’s upper chamber).
“The old party is dead. It’s time to put it to rest. Build something new,” Josh Hawley, the Republican senator from Missouri aligned with Trump, tweeted after Laxalt’s defeat was called by the AP.
Republicans notched up one big gain in Nevada when Joe Lombardo, the sheriff of Clark County, which includes Las Vegas, won the governor’s race. Jim Marchant was the party’s candidate for secretary, but he was defeated by critics for questioning 2020 election results.
In Arizona, Mark Finchem, who has attacked Biden’s win over Trump as “illegitimate”, also lost his contest to be secretary of state, which oversees elections, to the Democrat Adrian Fontes.
The outcome of the Arizona governor’s race pitting Kari Lake, a Trump-backed former television news anchor, with Katie Hobbs, the Democratic candidate, was still too close to call, though Hobbs maintained a lead as of Saturday evening.
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