Midterm election results

Republicans hold Senate, Democrats flip House in historic midterms


Photo by Creative Commons

Sen. Ted Cruz speaks at an event during his 2016 presidential campaign. In a historic election on Nov. 6, Cruz narrowly won reelection for his seat over Democratic challenger Rep. Beto O’Rourke in the most expensive Senate race in American history.

Story by Joseph Rodgers, editor in chief

As the midterm election results swept over the media nationwide, political pundits were correct in the prediction that the Republicans would make gains in the Senate and the Democrats would flip control of the House of Representatives.

In Texas, Senator Ted Cruz narrowly edged out of a fierce competition from Representative Beto O’Rourke in the Senate election. The candidate and the incumbent were neck and neck most of night with O’Rourke capturing the majority of votes in the urban areas of Houston, Dallas, Austin, San Antonio and El Paso. O’Rourke also held the majority in many of the counties adjacent to the Mexican border while the remainder of Texas went to Cruz.

For the gubernatorial race, Governor Greg Abbott was re-elected for another term over Democrat candidate Lupe Valdez with a comfortable lead of around 13 points. Incumbent Dan Patrick, on the other hand, had a tighter race with Democrat candidate Mike Collier for Lieutenant Governor, but ended up winning over the challenger.

In key races for the Senate, Democrat senators, such as Joe Donnelly of Indiana, Claire McCaskill of Missouri and Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, all lost to their Republican challengers. Republicans may have been energized in these races in wake of these senators’ votes against the confirmation of now Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. Senator Joe Manchin III of West Virginia held his seat as he sided with the Republicans to confirm Kavanaugh.

The Democrats flipped the House of Representatives, however, by winning in suburban districts that had a strong demographic of college-educated women heavily voting Democratic. Republicans held a few critical seats in competitive districts but not enough to counteract the Democrats regaining control.

Overall, the midterm elections had record turnout for a number of diverse candidates. Beto O’Rourke failed to make history by becoming the first Democratic senator from Texas in over 25 years, but he proved that Republicans can no longer take Texas for granted.