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Republican Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp turned back a second electoral challenge from Democratic challenger Stacey Abrams, maintaining GOP control in the South’s most politically competitive state and dealing another defeat to the national Democratic star.
“Even though our fight for the governor’s mansion may have come up short, I’m pretty tall,” Abrams said in her concession speech.
After the Democrat lost her gubernatorial campaign in 2018, she refashioned herself as an advocate for voting rights and garnered the admiration of Democrats nationwide.
But it wasn’t enough to help her win a rematch with Kemp, a Republican, which the AP called early Wednesday. Abrams had delivered her concession speech before the call.
It was a difficult blow to Abrams, who had been viewed as a potential force within the party at a time when Georgia has been increasingly contested as a battleground state.
And it showed Kemp’s ability to salvage a political career that was in danger after he angered former President Donald Trump by refusing to go along with his false claims that the 2020 election was stolen.
Democrat Josh Shapiro has been elected as governor of Pennsylvania, defeating hard-right Republican candidate Doug Mastriano after a highly anticipated battle in a key battleground state.
Shapiro, a two-term state attorney general, will replace the term-limited Democrat Tom Wolf.
Mastriano, a member of the state Senate, courted controversy as a staunch supporter of former President Donald Trump’s discredited claims that he was cheated out of victory in the 2020 elections.
A perennial swing state, Pennsylvania’s races have drawn national attention. In addition to the governor’s race, Wolf’s former lieutenant governor John Fetterman is facing off against television celebrity Mehmet Oz in an still-uncalled race that could determine control of the U.S. Senate.
Democratic Sen. Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire won a second term in office in a race that Republican strategists had targeted as ripe for flipping, AP’s Holly Ramer reports from Concord.
New Hampshire has a mixed political history, with both Republicans and Democrats capturing the governor’s office in recent years. Currently, Democrats control both Senate seats and all four seats in the House of Representatives, and New Hampshire has gone Democratic in the last five presidential elections. But the state legislature and the governor’s office are in Republican hands.
Hassan defeated Donald Bolduc, a retired Army general who has espoused conspiracy theories about vaccines and embraced the discredited belief that former President Donald Trump won the 2020 election.
“Hillbilly Elegy” author J.D. Vance defeated Democratic U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan for an open U.S. Senate seat in Ohio on Tuesday in a blow to Democrats who viewed it as one of their best chances nationally to flip a seat.
Vance, 38, a venture capitalist and newcomer to politics, benefited from a last-minute push by Donald Trump. The former Republican president had endorsed Vance in a crowded, ugly Republican primary — despite Vance having once declared himself a “never-Trumper” — and then rallied for him twice, most recently on election eve.
Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has won a third term following one of the most expensive races of the 2022 midterm elections.
Abbott’s defeat of Democrat Beto O’Rourke on Tuesday extends decades of GOP dominance in Texas. The victory underlined Abbott’s durability after a record spending that topped more than $200 million.
Abbott capitalized on anxieties about crime and inflation against a hard-charging rival who took up the fight for voters soured by the Uvalde school massacre and the deadly failure of the state’s power grid in 2021. Abbott strengthened his position as a potential 2024 Republican presidential contender and secured his place as the state’s second-longest serving governor.
Joe Biden and Donald Trump are having rare moment of agreement on Election Day: They’re urging the voters to stay in line.
Biden took to Twitter late in the evening to urge voters who are facing long lines to wait it out to cast their ballots. “If you’re in line to vote, remember to stay in line!” Biden tweeted.
The Democrats tweet came hours after Trump took his social media startup Truth Social to urge “The Great People of Arizona” to not leave the line “until you VOTE.”
President Joe Biden has made several “congratulatory” calls to fellow Democrats on Tuesday evening, according to the White House.
The White House said Biden has already reached out to Massachusetts Governor-elect Maura Healey, Rhode Island Gov. Dan McKee, Vermont Senator-elect Peter Welch, Delaware Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester, Colorado Gov. Jared Polis, Virginia Rep. Abigail Spanberger, and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York.
The Associated Press has not declared Spanberger, a two-term incumbent, the winner in Virginia’s 7th district race.
U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, the freshman Republican who gained notoriety in her first term for incendiary rhetoric that edged into racism, antisemitism and conspiracy theories, has been reelected.
Just weeks after taking office last year, members of the Democratic-controlled House voted to strip Greene of her committee assignments following uproar over her past comments and apparent support of violence against Democrats.
Democrats were particularly livid about a Facebook ad on Greene’s campaign page. The image featured a photo of Greene holding a gun along images of Democratic U.S. Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib. The ad included the caption: “Squad’s worst nightmare.”
Greene was expected to easily win reelection and has made clear that should Republicans win control of House she expects to hold a prominent role in the caucus.
“I’m going to be a strong legislator and I’ll be a very involved member of Congress,” she predicted. “I know how to work inside, and I know how to work outside. And I’m looking forward to doing that.”
WATCH LIVE: 2022 Midterm Elections | PBS NewsHour Special Coverage
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine won reelection to a second term in office, defeating Democratic challenge Nan Whaley.
DeWine and Whaley briefly found common ground in pledging to work together on a bipartisan effort for gun reform in 2019, after a gunman killed nine people in Dayton, where Whaley was the mayor.
But Whaley has said that DeWine did not make good on his promise, criticizing his signing of a bill to arm school employees and saying he failed to pass stronger gun laws.
U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer has been elected to a fifth term, easily defeating a little-known Republican political commentator. Schumer is the Senate majority leader and will keep that post only if the Democrats retain control of the chamber after Tuesday’s election.
The New York Democrat was first elected to the Senate in 1998. He hasn’t faced a serious challenge since then. His opponent this year was Republican Joe Pinion, a former host on the conservative network Newsmax who has never held elective office.
Meanwhile, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey easily won a second full term against Democrat Yolanda Flowers, the first Black woman to win a major party’s gubernatorial nomination in the state.
Flowers’ candidacy was an interesting historical footnote. But it posed no real threat to the GOP’s control of all three branches of government in a majority white, conservative state. Ivey avoided a runoff in the spring despite facing a slate that included eight Republican challengers who forced her to the right.
Once diagnosed with early stage lung cancer, Ivey disappeared from public view for nearly three weeks in the summer and refused to say whether she’d undergone any medical treatments.
Former White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders has been elected Arkansas governor and will be the first woman to lead the state.
Sanders on Tuesday defeated Democratic nominee Chris Jones in the race for governor in her predominantly Republican home state. Sanders will succeed fellow Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson, who is barred by term limits from seeking reelection.
Sanders shattered fundraising records in her bid for governor and campaigned primarily on national issues. She’s vowed to use the office to fight President Joe Biden’s agenda. She becomes the highest profile former Trump official elected to office.
Republican U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida easily won another term on Tuesday, beating Democratic U.S. Rep. Val Demings.
Once the quintessential swing state, Rubio’s victory appeared to be further evidence of Florida’s hardening conservative politics. Demings was unable to unseat Rubio despite raising more money and drawing national attention with her role in then-President Donald Trump’s first impeachment trial.
Voters in the most populous county in Texas will have an extra hour to cast their ballots, thanks to an emergency order from a local judge.
Texas state District Court Judge Dawn Rogers ordered that all polling places in Harris County, which includes Houston, remain open until 8 p.m. Central (that’s 9 p.m. Eastern). The ruling is in response to request by the Texas Organizing Project, after at least 12 polling places in the county failed to open at the required time on 7 a.m. Central.
Harris County election officials attributed the delays to a variety of causes, including lack of supplies and computer issues. Harris County Elections Administrator Clifford Tatum said anyone who is not in line to vote before the original 7 p.m. deadline will need to cast a provisional ballot during that extra hour of voting.
“If you are in line, stay in line. Your vote is your voice,” Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said in a tweet.
Polls closed in two dozen states Tuesday night as the nation voted in the first midterm elections of Joe Biden’s presidency, with control of Congress, governorships and other key races hanging in the balance.
Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis won a second term, defeating Democratic challenger Charlie Crist, a former congressman. The victory continues DeSantis’ rise as a national Republican star as he eyes a possible 2024 White House run.
Meanwhile, in two gubernatorial firsts, Maryland Democrat Wes Moore became the state’s first Black governor. And in Massachusetts, Democrat Maura Healey’s win makes her the state’s first woman and openly gay governor.
Moore is a bestselling author in his first run for public office, AP’s Brian Witte reports.
Healey is currently Massachusetts’ attorney general and has broken a peculiar jinx in the state. Since 1958, six former Massachusetts attorneys general sought the governor’s office and all failed, AP’s Steve LeBlanc reports.
Democratic U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth won reelection Tuesday in Illinois against political newcomer Kathy Salvi.
Duckworth is a first-term incumbent and was favored in the race after serving in Congress for nearly a decade. The 54-year-old Iraq War veteran lost both legs when her helicopter was shot down in 2004. She became the first senator to give birth while in office in April 2018.
Salvi is a Chicago-area personal injury lawyer who edged out six competitors to win the Republican primary. The 63-year-old campaigned as an alternative for voters looking for a change from soaring prices and high crime rates.
Democrat Maxwell Alejandro Frost has become the first Gen Z member to win a seat in Congress, winning a Florida House seat.
Frost, a 25-year-old gun reform and social justice activist, ran in a heavily blue Orlando-area district being relinquished by Democratic Rep. Val Demings, who challenged Republican Sen. Marco Rubio this year.
Frost is a former March For Our Lives organizer seeking stricter gun control laws and has stressed opposition to restrictions on abortion rights. Generation Z generally refers to those born between the late 1990s to early 2010s. To become a member of Congress, candidates must be at least 25 years old.
He ran against Calvin Wimbish, a 72-year-old former Army Green Beret who called himself a “Christian, conservative, constitutionalist” candidate for office.
Right as polls closed in South Carolina and Vermont, AP made its first calls in U.S. Senate races. Republican Tim Scott won reelection in South Carolina, while Democrat Peter Welch was elected from Vermont.
In defeating Trump-endorsed Republican Gerald Malloy, Welch — who has served in the House of Representatives for 16 years — becomes the junior senator from Vermont while independent Bernie Sanders becomes the state’s senior senator. Longtime U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy is retiring after serving 48 years, AP’s Wilson Ring reports.
The last day of midterms voting has started to slowly wind down.
Some polls closed in Kentucky and Indiana at 6 p.m. Eastern. The next wave of closures will be in New Hampshire, Vermont, Virginia, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida. Polls close or begin to close in those states at 7 p.m. Eastern.
It may not be a presidential election year, but the 2022 midterm elections are high-stakes nonetheless. As polls close on Election Day, results will start trickling in, but some races may take days to call a winner.
Among the dynamics to watch: Will there be a red wave, or will Democrats hold on to one or both Houses? How will concerns about inflation, the fate of democracy and abortion shape key races? And how might candidates who have denied the results of the 2020 election reshape the American political landscape?
We’ll be posting updates here from the Associated Press all election night.
You can also follow the NewsHour’s live coverage on YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and TikTok, and see highlights on our Instagram.
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