NPR logo Fight For The Senate: Republicans Take Control, Adding 7 Seats

America

Fight For The Senate: Republicans Take Control, Adding 7 Seats

Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell arrives at his midterm election night rally with his wife, former U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao, in Louisville. McConnell, who won re-election, stands to become the next Senate majority leader. i

Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell arrives at his midterm election night rally with his wife, former U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao, in Louisville. McConnell, who won re-election, stands to become the next Senate majority leader. Shannon Stapleton/Reuters /Landov hide caption

toggle caption Shannon Stapleton/Reuters /Landov
Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell arrives at his midterm election night rally with his wife, former U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao, in Louisville. McConnell, who won re-election, stands to become the next Senate majority leader.

Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell arrives at his midterm election night rally with his wife, former U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao, in Louisville. McConnell, who won re-election, stands to become the next Senate majority leader.

Shannon Stapleton/Reuters /Landov

With a loss by Sen. Mark Pryor, the first Democratic incumbent fell in the 2014 midterms, setting off a chain of events that brought the Republicans a new Senate majority. The man who would lead them in Congress, Sen. Mitch McConnell, coasted to a win in Kentucky.

McConnell was projected to defeat Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes by a 15-point margin, 56 percent to 41 percent, with almost a third of the vote tallied.

In Arkansas, Democratic Sen. Mark Pryor lost to Republican Rep. Tom Cotton, a first-term member of Congress. Pryor has served in the Senate since 2003.

We'll be updating this post with news and results from races around the nation, focusing on races that might change the balance of power in Congress. You can also follow our special coverage at NPR's Election Party.

Update at 7:40 a.m. ET. In Virginia, Warner Claims Victory:

Leading with a razor thin margin, Sen. Mark Warner, a Democrat from Virginia, declared victory over Republican Ed Gillespie.

The Washington Post reports:

"The contest was so close that Warner's opponent declined to concede, but the Democrat promised to serve a second term working across the aisle with a new Republican majority in the Senate.

"'It was a hard-fought race. It went a little longer than we thought,' Warner said. 'I'll work with anyone — Democrat, Republican, independent, you name it — if we're going to make sure we get our country's problems fixed.'"

Update at 7:23 a.m. ET. In Alaska, Sullivan's Lead Holds:

With 100 percent of precincts reporting, Republican Dan Sullivan led independent Mark Begich by a four-point margin.

Begich, however, had not conceded. The Alaska Dispatch News reports:

"Speaking just after midnight at his election night party in a packed ballroom at the Hotel Captain Cook, Sullivan praised his supporters and told them: "We are taking back our country!"

"'We're still going to be respectful of the process,' Sullivan said. But he nonetheless touted Republicans' successes in Senate races across the country Tuesday, and to hearty cheers, he proclaimed that the party had sidelined Harry Reid, the Democratic leader in the Senate.

"'We're going to take back America, the land that we love," Sullivan said, as the crowd erupted in chants of 'USA! USA!'"

Update at 1:40 a.m. ET: Warner-Gillespie Too Close To Call

It remains to be seen if the Republican Party can add to its advantage in the Senate. The Virginia race between Democratic incumbent Mark Warner and Republican Ed Gillespie is coming down to the wire, with most services deeming it too close to call.

And in Alaska, Republican Dan Sullivan led independent Mark Begich by a 50-45 percent margin, with less than a quarter of the vote tallied.

We'll remind you that there's also a December runoff scheduled in Louisiana, between Democrat Sen. Mary Landrieu and Republican Rep. Bill Cassidy.

Update at 11:40 p.m. ET: Ernst Wins, Giving GOP 7 Seats

Republican Joni Ernst has won a Senate seat in Iowa, beating out Democrat Rep. Bruce Braley to take the seat being vacated by Sen. Tom Harkin.

Update at 11:26 p.m. ET: GOP Takes Control With Tillis Win

With the projected victory of Thom Tillis in North Carolina, the Republicans have now gained six Senate seats, giving them control of both chambers of Congress. Tillis, the current state House speaker, defeated incumbent Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan.

Update at 11:20 p.m. ET: Roberts Defeats Orman In Kansas

Incumbent Republican Sen. Pat Roberts has beaten independent candidate Greg Orman, NPR projects. It would be the fourth term for Roberts.

In Georgia, Michelle Nunn has conceded the race for the seat vacated by Republican Saxby Chambliss, as the GOP's David Perdue takes the win.

Update at 10:20 p.m. ET: Gardner Wins In Colorado

Republican Cory Gardner has defeated incumbent Sen. Mark Udall, giving the GOP five seats so far in the midterms.

Update at 10 p.m. ET: Runoff For Landrieu; Daines Wins

Republican Steve Daines has won the Senate race in Montana, NPR projects, a victory that means the GOP has picked up four seats so far. Daines defeated state Rep. Amanda Curtis, taking over the seat vacated by Democrat Sen. John Walsh.

The Louisiana Senate race between Democrat Sen. Mary Landrieu and Republican Rep. Bill Cassidy will head to a runoff in December, NPR projects. She will not be favored in that head-to-head race, Five Thirty Eight reports.

Update at 9:15 p.m. ET: Rounds And Shaheen Win; More Results

The GOP scored a big win in South Dakota, where Mike Rounds is projected to beat Rick Weiland, taking the seat that's being vacated by Democrat Tim Johnson.

In New Hampshire, Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen has been re-elected, defeating former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown.

Republican Sen. Mike Enzi has been re-elected in Wyoming, NPR projects.

Republicans John Cornyn and Gary Peters have also won, in Texas and Michigan, respectively.

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.