Republicans Inch Towards Victory in House; Senate Control Hangs in Balance

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.

US President Joe Biden hailed a “good day for democracy” after a surprisingly strong performance in midterm elections, with Republicans inching toward a slim majority in only one chamber of Congress. Biden, while acknowledging voters’ frustration, said that an “overwhelming majority” of Americans supported his economic agenda and indicated he was leaning toward seeking a second term in 2024, although he said he would make a decision early next year.

The incumbent party historically loses in midterm elections and Republicans had hoped for a major sweep after hammering Biden over stubbornly high inflation, with many also backing unfounded claims over the legitimacy of his defeat of Donald Trump two years ago.

“It was a good day I think for democracy. And I think it was a good day for America,” Biden told a White House news conference.

“While the press and the pundits were predicting a giant red wave, it didn’t happen.”

It was also an underwhelming night for Donald Trump, who was counting on a big Republican showing to boost another White House run.

“While in certain ways yesterday’s election was somewhat disappointing, from my personal standpoint it was a very big victory — 219 WINS and 16 Losses,” Trump said in a reference to candidates he personally endorsed.

In addition to seeing several of his high-profile candidates lose, Trump also saw his main rival for the Republican presidential nomination in 2024, Ron DeSantis, notch up a thumping victory to remain governor of Florida.

Republicans appear to be on track to reclaim the 435-member House for the first time since 2018, but by a mere handful of seats.

“It is clear that we are going to take the House back,” said top Republican Kevin McCarthy, who hopes to be the chamber’s next speaker and who put on a brave face after his party fell short of picking up the 60 seats he once predicted.

For his part, Biden pointed out in a tweet that — while the count in some places was still ongoing — his party “lost fewer seats in the House of Representatives than any Democratic president’s first midterm election in at least 40 years.”

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