Control of the US House of Representatives hung on Monday in several tight races that could secure a majority for Republicans after midterm elections saw President Joe Biden’s Democrats beat expectations and retain the Senate.
Republicans came closest to taking the House, winning 212 seats to Democrats’ 206, with 218 needed for a majority. But the final result may not be known for days, as officials continue to count ballots nearly a week after Americans went to the polls.
After securing the Senate over the weekend and dashing Republican hopes of a “red wave” of gains, Democrats cast their performance as a vindication of their agenda and a rebuke to Republican efforts to undermine the validity of the election results.
Other high-profile no-call races include Arizona’s gubernatorial race, where Republican Kari Lake, who promoted former President Donald Trump’s baseless claims of voter fraud in 2020, trailed her Democratic opponent by one percentage point.
There are still about 17 House nominations pending, with Republicans leading the vote count in a dozen of them. Edison Research projected Republican Lori Chavez-Deremer as the winner in Oregon’s 5th District on Monday, flipping a seat previously held by Democrats.
The Democrats’ narrow path to victory runs largely through liberal California, which holds 10 of the uncontested seats.
Democrats may also need to secure victories in close contests in Maine, Alaska and Arizona to preserve their slim majority in the chamber.
A Republican victory in the House would set the stage for two years of divided government while giving Biden’s opponents the power to limit his political agenda and launch potentially damaging investigations into his administration and family.
Jim Banks, a Republican congressman from Indiana, said he expects his party to win a slim majority in the 435-seat chamber and serve as “the last line of defense to block Biden’s agenda” as he launches investigations into the withdrawal of U.S. United Afghanistan. , the origin of the COVID confinement and pandemic.
“That has to be a focal point of every committee in Congress, especially in the Republican-controlled House,” Banks told Fox News on Sunday.
House Democratic Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Sunday she would not make an announcement about whether she planned to remain in the leadership until control of the chamber is decided.
There had been speculation that Pelosi would resign if the Democrats lost their majority, especially after her husband was attacked by an intruder in their San Francisco home last month.
Democrats, after seizing control of the Senate with a win for Nevada Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto on Saturday, are shifting their focus to a runoff in Georgia that could strengthen their hold on Congress.
A Democratic victory in the Dec. 6 runoff between Sen. Raphael Warnock and Republican challenger Herschel Walker would give the party control of the absolute majority, strengthening its influence over committees, bills and judicial elections.
Nevada’s victory put Democrats in command of a 50-50 Senate, with Vice President Kamala Harris holding the tie-breaking vote.
Although Republicans win a narrow majority in the House, Democrats’ performance suggests they have been successful in portraying their opponents as extremists, pointing in part to the Supreme Court’s decision to eliminate abortion rights nationwide after conservative appointments in stand
But the results also led to increased scrutiny of Trump, who has used his popularity among far-right conservatives to influence the candidates Republicans have nominated for congressional, gubernatorial and local races.
A Republican defeat in Georgia could further dent Trump’s popularity, as advisers say he considers launching a third straight bid for the presidency on Tuesday. He has been accused of pushing candidates who cannot appeal to a broad enough audience.
© Thomson Reuters 2022.