The House Goes To The Republicans

Despite a poor midterm election, Republicans have regained control of the House, giving them a foothold to check President Joe Biden and congressional Democrats.

Despite pre-election forecasts of a red tsunami, Republicans are on track for the tiniest of majorities. Instead, it was evident the party had gained the majority more than a week after Election Day after the votes had been counted. And the majority could be challenging for a Republican speaker to control the next year.

Rep. Mike Garcia’s reelection campaign in California’s 27th District was declared victorious over Democratic opponent Christy Smith in the decisive call.

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The GOP was able to regain control thanks to redistricting, victories in open seats, and an unexpectedly strong showing in New York State. A weak economy and President Joe Biden’s average approval ratings, however, mainly failed to help Republican candidates defeat seasoned Democratic lawmakers and a larger majority. Only six Democratic incumbents lost their seats in the end.

I congratulate Leader McCarthy on Republicans capturing the House majority, and I’m eager to work with House Republicans to achieve results for working families,” Biden said in a statement on Wednesday night. McCarthy is expected to be the next speaker of the House.

McCarthy, for his part, discussed leveraging the GOP’s newfound influence to restrain the Biden administration. “Take a minute to reflect. It’s official,” he informed Sean Hannity of Fox News. “Democratic one-party rule in Washington is over. We’ve let Nancy Pelosi go.

For a portion of the summer and fall, Democrats held out hope of retaining the House as voters expressed their rage at the Republican Party over the decision to overturn Roe v. Wade. Although the abortion debate helped Democrats gain more support from voters and balance out what had been turning out to be a Republican year, it was not enough to stop the GOP’s advances totally.

Only five seats were necessary for Republicans to gain control of the House. On election night, the GOP added numerous seats in Florida thanks to Gov. Ron DeSantis and Sen. Marco Rubio’s strong showings at the top of the ticket and newly drawn, aggressively gerrymandered congressional district lines.

These early victories did not carry over to many of the toughest districts nationwide. Reps. Abigail Spanberger of Virginia, Angie Craig of Minnesota, and Chris Pappas of New Hampshire were among the endangered Democratic incumbents who prevailed. The party also won seats in places where the outcome was in doubt, such as Ohio, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania.

Nevertheless, among many pickups in the state, Republicans scored a resounding victory over DCCC chairman Sean Patrick Maloney in upstate New York. Marc Molinaro, a Republican, won a seat that encompassed a large portion of the territory he lost in a summertime special election. As Republicans George Santos and Anthony D’Esposito won open seats with a blue tilt, Long Island as a whole turned red.

Additionally, the GOP was able to flip seats in Virginia, where Rep. Elaine Luria was defeated by Rep. Jen Kiggans, Arizona, where Rep. Tom O’Halleran was defeated by Rep. Eli Crane, New Jersey, where Rep. Tom Kean Jr. defeated Rep. Tom Malinowski, and Iowa, where Rep. Cindy Axne was defeated by Rep. Zach Nunn.

In Michigan, Republican John James, a highly regarded recruit, defeated a Democrat with inadequate funding by a narrow margin. In Arizona, Republican Juan Ciscomani and Democrat Kirsten Engel had a much closer election than was predicted. Democratic groups made very little to no outside spending in both elections.

Republicans who voted to impeach Donald Trump lost their primaries in Michigan and Washington State, two states where Democrats fought back, not just reducing their losses but changing GOP-held seats in those states. In the general elections, Democrats were successful in defeating the eventual far-right nominees.

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Reps. Steve Chabot (R-Ohio) and Yvette Herrell (R-New Mexico) were also defeated by Democratic challengers in districts that turned bluer as a result of redistricting. But it wasn’t enough to prevent a House change.

Rep. Mike Levin, a Democrat, earned a second term in the 49th District of California in another election that was called Wednesday evening. Additionally, the outcome of Rep. Jared Golden’s (D-Maine) contest was announced. Maine makes use of ranked-choice voting.

Three House races—one in Colorado, one in Alaska—and five in California—remain undecided. Republicans are ahead in four of them.

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