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- Bonus Quote of the Day
November 7, 2012
Rep. Tom Latham (R) defeated his colleague, Rep. Leonard Boswell (D), in their 3rd district matchup tonight.
Latham had an 8-point lead over his Democratic opponent with 93 percent of precincts reporting in the southwestern Iowa district, according to the Associated Press.
A top ally of Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), Latham raised considerably more money than Boswell did. But the Democrat had a geographical advantage in this Tossup race, with more of his old district included in the new one.
Boswell’s defeat marks the first Member to lose to a colleague tonight.
In Ohio, Rep. Jim Renacci (R) leads Rep. Betty Sutton (D) in the 16th district by a slim 4-point margin, but with only 57 percent of precincts reporting. The Associated Press has not called that race yet.
Democrat Tammy Baldwin made history tonight, winning in Wisconsin to become the first openly gay candidate elected to the Senate.
In one of the most expensive and bruising races in the country, Baldwin defeated former Gov. Tommy Thompson (R), the establishment favorite who narrowly won a four-way August primary.
Baldwin was able to ride the coattails of President Barack Obama, who won the Badger State, after mounting an extraordinarily effective media strategy that turned the tables on Thompson early in the general election. Her team was able to take Thompson’s high statewide name recognition and popularity and flip it on its head. She spent millions of dollars to paint the former Health and Human Services secretary as an out-of-touch Washington lobbyist who was “no longer for” Wisconsin.
Both Thompson and Baldwin were more unpopular with Wisconsin voters than they were popular in the closing days of the race, but clearly Badger State voters decided the Republican’s branding of Baldwin as “too extreme” was less damaging than the Democrat’s attack of Thompson.
“We nominated more women candidates than ever. We placed confidence every day and we never let up and now Joe Donnelly and Tammy Baldwin and Tim Kaine … they’re all coming to join us in the Senate,” Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray (Wash.) told a ballroom of supporters, well before the Wisconsin race was even called.
Two Congressmen from different parties are moving up to the Senate.
Rep. Jeff Flake (R) is set to represent Arizona in the Senate, while Rep. Martin Heinrich (D) is set to be New Mexico’s newest Senator, according to an Associated Press projection.
In Arizona, Flake was up over his Democratic rival, former Surgeon General Richard Carmona (D), by more than 6 percent with 63 percent of precincts reporting. In New Mexico, Heinrich was up more than 6 points over former Rep. Heather Wilson (R) with 66 percent of precincts reporting.
In a packed ballroom of a Capitol Hill hotel, a gleeful Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) addressed cheering supporters in celebration of a political reality few thought likely two years ago: He is still the No. 1 leader in the Senate.
Reid took the stage here at the Liaison Capitol Hill hotel just minutes after both CNN and NBC News called the presidential race for Barack Obama and seconds after Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray (Wash.), who pumped her fists in the air and waved.
Murray took the job no one wanted: defending 23 Democratic-held seats. With the assist of gaffe-prone Republican candidates in key races, the Washington Democrat succeeded and it could pay huge dividends for her future within the caucus.
“Whenever there’s been something that’s hard to do, we [look] to Patty. And she delivers,” Reid said to cheers. “I am so satisfied, proud, elated and feel so, so much in debt to Patty Murray, with her many … responsibilities.
“There is no one who has ever done a better job of running the [Democratic] Senatorial Campaign Committee than Patty Murray.”
Murray touted the success of Democratic women especially in maintaining the party’s majority in the Senate. Though the Associated Press had not called the race yet, Murray said that Democratic candidate and Rep. Tammy Baldwin had defeated Republican former Gov. Tommy Thompson.
“Harry Reid, I am proud to tell you, you will be Majority Leader!” Murray yelled to the crowd.
Reid also took a less-than-subtle jab at Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), opening his remarks with a taunt, claiming that this result was what happens when one party says its No. 1 goal is defeating the president.
There are still several races that are too close to call, but several Democratic aides circulated through the press room at the hotel touting exit polls in Nevada that indicated the Hispanic vote was even greater this year than it was in 2010, when Reid eked out a victory over tea-party-backed Sharron Angle. Operatives were keeping information on the tight Montana Senate race between incumbent Sen. Jon Tester (D) and challenger Rep. Denny Rehberg (R) close to the vest.
November 6, 2012
Attorney Ann McLane Kuster (D) did this year what she could not do in 2010: She defeated Rep. Charles Bass (R).
Kuster was up over Bass by a 9-point margin at the time the Associated Press called the race.
The pair faced off in 2010, with Bass winning a squeaker. Kuster began her 2012 campaign almost immediately after that race wrapped up.
Of the two New Hampshire House seats, this was always considered the more likely Democratic pickup. Much rode on the presidential campaign here, and President Barack Obama carried the state again.
The race for New Hampshire’s 1st is another 2010 rematch. That contest between Rep. Frank Guinta (R) and former Rep. Carol Shea Porter (D) remains too close to call.
Every House race but one has been called in the Sunshine State, and there have been no surprises.
But firebrand Rep. Allen West (R) remained locked in a razor-tight contest with businessman Patrick Murphy (D) in Florida’s 18th district. With 96.4 percent of precincts reporting, West led with 50.2 percent to Murphy’s 49.8 percent, according to the Associated Press.
Here are other competitive race results, as reported by the AP:
- Freshman Rep. Steve Southerland (R) beat former state Sen. Al Lawson in the Panhandle 2nd district by a comfortable 5-point margin.
- Freshman Rep. Daniel Webster (R) held off a challenge from former Orlando Police Chief Val Demings, beating her by 3.6 points.
- Rep. Vern Buchanan (R) easily beat former state Rep. Keith Fitzgerald (D) by more than 7 points.
- Former West Palm Beach Mayor Lois Frankel (D) beat former state House Majority Leader Adam Hasner (R) in the open 22nd district, reconfigured to be significantly more Democratic.
- Embattled Rep. David Rivera (R) lost to Democrat Joe Garcia in the Miami-area 26th district.
At least three GOP House incumbents lost their seats in Illinois tonight, according to Associated Press projections.
Here is a roundup of the competitive Illinois House seats as of late tonight:
Veteran Tammy Duckworth (D) defeated Rep. Joe Walsh (R).
Former Rep. Bill Foster (D) over Rep. Judy Biggert (R).
Retired Army Maj. Gen. Bill Enyart (D) defeated businessman Jason Plummer (R).
Former East Moline Alderwoman Cheri Bustos (D) defeated Rep. Bobby Schilling (R).
The only outstanding competitive Illinois race is for the 10th district. Almost 99 percent of precincts were reporting, but it was too close for the AP to call. Democrat Brad Schneider is challenging Rep. Robert Dold (R). Schneider was up by 1 point as this was posted.
The race for the 13th district between Rodney Davis (R) and David Gill (D) was also too close to call.
Georgia Democratic Rep. John Barrow proved tonight he is the survivor’s survivor.
Drawn into a strong Republican seat during redistricting and hammered relentlessly for months by local and national Republicans, the Blue Dog Democrat managed to pull out a strong victory tonight, beating Republican Lee Anderson.
With 94 percent of precincts reporting, the Associated Press said the incumbent took 54 percent to Anderson’s 46 percent. Full story
Former Sen. George Allen (R) has conceded to former Gov. Tim Kaine (D) in the race to replace retiring Sen. Jim Webb (D).
The two men, fond of each other personally, were vying for a Senate seat that was central to GOP plans to take control of the Senate.
At the time of Allen’s concession, Kaine was leading by about 1 point and the presidential contest was almost completely tied.
Sen. Claire McCaskill (D), a crafty politician and tireless campaigner, won re-election tonight, beating Republican Rep. Todd Akin.
Akin’s candidacy, despite being a Republican in a red state, was irrevocably harmed when he told a local TV host that the “legitimate rape” of a woman rarely leads to pregnancy.
With 39 percent of precincts reporting, the Associated Press had McCaskill with 51 percent of the vote to Akin’s 42 percent.
McCaskill is widely credited with helping Akin win a competitive primary by airing “attack” ads against him that actually boosted him among the conservative GOP electorate. Akin made his harmful comments about rape after his primary win.
Rep. David Cicilline (D) hung on to win a second House term, according to the Associated Press.
Cicilline was in electoral trouble from the early days of his tenure in 2011. Rhode Islanders were furious with him when it was revealed he left the city of Providence in dire financial straits as mayor.
Republicans were bullish on their recruit, former State Police Superintendent Brendan Doherty. The National Republican Congressional Committee dedicated a great deal of money and attention to the race.
But the heavily Democratic nature of the district was enough to carry Cicilline over the finish line. At the time the Associated Press called the race, Cicilline was up by 9 points. He is on track to improve on his 6-point margin of victory in 2010.
North Carolina Democrats are having a very, very bad night. Running in a redrawn Congressional map favoring the GOP, at least three Democratic Congressmen will not be coming back to Capitol Hill. The only bright spot for Democrats: Rep. Mike McIntyre’s race remained too close for the Associated Press to call as of 10:10 p.m.
Democratic Rep. Larry Kissell (D) lost to former Congressional aide Richard Hudson (R). With 68 percent of precincts reporting, the Associated Press said Hudson had 58.4 percent to Kissell’s 41.6 percent. Kissell, a lackluster fundraiser and campaigner, always had a steep path back to the House. After the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee abandoned him, not fulfilling reservations it had to advertise on TV for him, his fate was all but sealed. Full story
Speaker John Boehner drew a firm line on taxes tonight, saying that Republicans’ retention of the House majority is a sign the public does not want a tax rate hike.
With CNN and NBC projecting that the GOP will retain the House majority, Boehner and National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Pete Sessions (Texas) took the stage at the GOP’s victory party in Washington, D.C., to cheer on the crowd.
“The American people want solutions, and tonight, they’ve responded by renewing our majority,” the Ohio Republican said. “With this vote, the American people have also made clear that there is no mandate for raising tax rates.”
Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus did not join them onstage, although the official schedule released earlier in the day had listed him as speaking before Sessions.
With Democrats claiming several Tossup Senate seats, the path to victory for Republicans in that chamber is slimming. The presidential contest remains extremely close as well.
Boehner thanked Priebus from the stage nonetheless. He also thanked GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney and vice presidential nominee Rep. Paul Ryan (Wis.), who, he said “carried the banner of our party with grace, vision, strength and dignity.”
“We stand ready to work with any willing partner — Republican, Democrat or otherwise — who shares a commitment to getting these things done,” he said. “We’re humbled to have again been entrusted by the American people with the responsibility of leading the People’s House. We’ll never take it for granted, and we won’t let you down.”
Sessions, who introduced Boehner, called the House an “incubator of ideas.”
“We will continue to work with the American people on ideas that will make our country stronger, more competitive and will build back the American dream,” he said.
Lightning didn’t strike twice in Massachusetts for Sen. Scott Brown (R).
The Associated Press called the race for Elizabeth Warren (D), a Harvard University professor, consumer advocate and first-time political candidate, around 10 p.m. She had 53 percent of votes to Brown’s 47 percent, with 47 percent of precincts reporting.
The Bay State’s junior Senator won an improbable special election victory in January 2010 that shocked the political world. The results this evening, in deep-blue Massachusetts, proved decidedly less of a jolt. Full story