Elections Bring Drastic Shifts In Congress


By Norah Laughter, Reporter

Tuesday brought millions of Americans to the polls. In some states, Senate and House seats were up for grabs, which has been closely watched after the 2016 elections. Democrats and Republicans have been vying for seats in both chambers, as when one party controls a chamber, the outcome of votes will often favor that party. Before the elections, the power in the Senate was skewed to the Republican party with a 51 to 49 ratio.

In order for Democrats to gain control, they would need to obtain two more seats while keeping all of the current members. This year’s elections had 35 seats up for grabs, 26 of which were Democrats. Republicans managed to hold onto their lead, with a Senate ratio of 51 to 46.

Key races included Ted Cruz (R) versus Beto O”Rourke (D) in Texas, and Claire McCaskill (D) versus Josh Hawley (R) in Missouri, with the victors being Cruz and Hawley.

Democrats were more successful in the House, ending election night with a 221 to 196 ratio. Republicans lost 26 seats while Democrats gained 26, according the The New York Times Live Election Results.

The elections have also brought more women into Congress. Women have never had more than 84 seats in the House, but as of Tuesday night they had bumped that number up to 95. Over 100 women fought for a place in the lower chamber, and they are largely responsible for the Democratic Party’s victory. According to the Washington Post, who tracked the 277 female candidates for Congress and governor, 117 women won their election, and 33 races were woman versus woman.