US midterm elections: Record attendance as Congress is in limbo

US midterm elections: Record attendance as Congress is in limbo

Polls began to be closed in some states when the Americans voted and opted for one of the most diverging midterm elections in modern US political history. Early exit surveys showed that 16 percent voted for the first time, compared to 10 percent in 2016.

Polling stations around the country will cool off in the next six hours until the final polls in Alaska close at midnight (5am London / 2pm Tokyo).

There were reports that some polling stations would remain open for an hour longer after a record attendance with delays and technical difficulties, with anecdotes about long queues and broken machines at various locations in Georgia, Texas and New York City.

Watching the White House return, President Donald Trump hopes his two-month furious election campaign across the country will reduce the Republican House's expected losses in the House of Representatives and help maintain or even expand the GOP. his thin majority in the Senate.

While Mr. Trump engaged on a platform of scare power over illegal immigration, the Democrats hope that voters will condemn Mr. Trump at the ballot box in a referendum on his presidency.

© Carolyn Kaster / AP

In addition to the 435 seats for the House election and the 35 Senate seats, Democrats also hope to gain a foothold in governor competitions.

A robust outcome would help position the party much more ahead of the presidential elections of 2020. The occupation of the governorate settlement in many states is also important if, in 2021, district district districts will be redrawn after the 2020 census.

The Democrats need a net profit of 23 seats in parliament to win the Chamber for the first time since 2010. While most experts expect them to win the house, the Senate landscape – where Republicans have a majority of 51 – 49 – is more difficult because the Democrats defend 26 of the controversial seats. There are also a number of Democratic incumbents in states that Mr. Trump won in 2016.

Given the large number of races this year, the result may not be clear until Wednesday morning. Here are the highlights until the election night, as the results come from all over the country.

First call signal reports Trump rejection

© Reuters

The midterm elections were widely described as a referendum on Donald Trump's presidency – and a preliminary CNN poll showed that 55 percent of voters disapproved, while 44 percent agreed. Despite a strong economy, most voters said that the US under Mr. Trump was traveling the wrong way and not in the right direction.

CNN surveys showed that 16 percent of voters cast ballots for the first time, compared to 10 percent in 2016 – a sign of the unusually high level of enthusiasm for the 2018 midterm elections.

Republicans downplay the consequences of the loss of home control

© AP

While elections are still underway in many states, Republicans are already downplaying the consequences of a possible takeover of the house by the Democrats – a sign of the party's game book, should the chamber of this congress be lost.

In Fox News, TV presenter Jesse Watters noted that although a Democratic-controlled house could demand Donald Trump's tax return and initiate several investigations against the Trump administration, a Republican-controlled Senate would allow Mr. Trump , continue to appoint federal judges and cabinet officials.

He and other conservative experts also noted that a big half-time loss to the presidential party does not necessarily mean that Mr. Trump would eventually lose his reelection.

For example, in 2010, Republicans scored 63 in the first interim election of Barack Obama's presidency – about twice as many seats as Republicans are likely to lose on Tuesday, said Fox News spokesman Greg Gutfeld.

"It's very possible that these 30 seats are like a rest on the highway to Trumpville," said Gutfeld.

First signs of a trend come from Kentucky

Leading Indicator: Democratic House of Representatives candidate for Kentucky's sixth congressional district Amy McGrath and daughter Eleanor challenge reigning Republican Andy Barr © Getty

The most concrete and earliest indication of how the election will develop will come from Kentucky's 6th congressional district, which closes the polls at 6 pm Eastern time.

The contest between reigning Republican Congressman Andy Barr faces a tough re-election battle with Amy McGrath, a Democrat and a former Navy fighter pilot.

Most political analysts predict Mr. Barr would still be able to keep his seat. If McGrath then prevails, this could signal a "blue wave" in which the Democrats could gain control of the House of Representatives by a healthy margin.

The other state, where the polls will be closed early and the results will start at 6:00 pm, is Indiana, where Joe Donnelly, a Democratic incumbent in the Senate, is struggling to retain control of his seat.

Voting problems in Georgia

Republican governor candidate Brian Kemp, Brian Kemp, votes his voice as his youngest daughter looks at © AP

In Georgia, officials have taken steps to resolve a series of voting issues that occurred this morning at state polling stations where Democrat Stacey Abrams and Republican Brian Kemp (pictured) are in a tough race for the governor.

By early afternoon, at least one electoral district had announced that it would remain open 25 minutes ahead of schedule to address a technical problem with its electronic voting system, which led to delays in voting this morning. NBC News reported The technical problem with the electronic retrieval system was that the machines were not properly connected and the battery was dead.

Eric Holder, a former Attorney General for Barack Obama, criticized Mr Kemp – who oversees the elections in Georgia – as State Secretary Twitter: "4.5 hours wait in African American districts in Georgia. Good job, Kemp. Nobody is surprised. And this guy wants a promotion to governor? Be a strong Georgia and vote for Stacey. "

The problems were not limited to Georgia. There were numerous social media reports of long queues and broken machines at polling stations in New York City.

High turnout: New record in the midterm elections

© AFP

More than 38 million Americans voted in early polls – a new record for a midterm election. This enthusiasm seems to have spread to Election Day, with polling stations reporting higher than usual voters in certain parts of the country.

Long queues have been reported in the 7th congressional district of Virginia for long mornings, in which retired CIA officer Abigail Spanberger tries to clear a republican seat held by Dave Brat, a member of the Tea Party. The same trend can be seen in other highly competitive house races in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Even in North Carolina, where there is no big senate or governor, the residents flocked to the polls. "All I've heard about turnout is high in almost all regions of the state with long lines," said Tim Boyum, a news anchor in Raleigh on TV, opposite the FT. "From the outer shores along the coast to the mountains, I've seen pictures and heard stories of long but smooth lines."

Michael McDonald, a professor at the University of Florida, who monitors voter turnout, said the evidence available so far has led him to stay on voter turnout the day before Election Day. This would be the strongest medium-term turnout since the early 1970s, he said.

A Washington Post-Schar School survey of battlefields based on people who voted in the last few weeks or on Tuesday evenings or on Tuesday morning revealed that more than 40 percent of Mr. Trump himself and health care are the most important factors in deciding on his voice was short after the economy and immigration.

End poll: Health care beats immigration as a critical issue

If Donald Trump had made a big bet that Republicans could prevail in recent weeks with a strict immigration line in the midterm elections, the Democrats did so in health care.

The CNN exit surveys indicate that the democratic strategy may have paid off. 41 percent of respondents said that health care was the most important issue in the elections, while only 23 percent believed that it was immigration.

During the campaign, the Democrats relentlessly attacked the Republicans for trying to reschedule America's insurance prematurely if they could lift Barack Obama's health bill for 2010 and drive up the cost of insurance premiums and drug prices.

The former CIA employee hopes for a surprise in Virginia

Pollsters in the suburbs of Richmond, Virginia, reported that turnout in the medium term was significantly higher than normal. "We see numbers more like a presidential election," said Glenda Jackson, who ran a polling station at Short Pump Middle School.

This area of ​​Virginia is usually solid Republican, but Abigail Spanberger, a former CIA employee, hoped to cause a surprise and become his first Democratic representative since 1968.

"This time it feels different," said Darryl Stafford, who had occasionally voted Republican in the past, but this time was elected Democrat. "There is an urgency for what concerns President Donald Trump."

However, there was also evidence that Mr. Trump's focus on immigration had motivated his base. "We need stricter controls at our borders," said procurement specialist Ted Polito. "I wanted to come out and do my part to make this happen."

Texas Showdown: Beto O'Rourke (D) vs. Ted Cruz (R)

Robert O & Rourke, right, the Texas Congressman better known as "Beto," on the Senate campaign in Houston © Reuters

One of the most watched races is the Senate battle in Texas, where Democrat Beto O & Rourke, a charismatic congressman and former punk rocker, makes Republican Ted Cruz the race of his political career.

While most polls showed Mr. O'Rourke is behind Mr. Cruz, Mr. O. Rourke believes the polls will not conquer the new voters he has on his 254-county tour of Texas over the past 19 months has attracted.

Mr O & Rourke voted on Tuesday morning in El Paso, his home district, before going to other polling stations in the border town to rally voters one last time.

Late in the day he received a super celebrity confirmation from Beyoncé, three hours before the end of the election.

Pennsylvania Cliffhanger: Bucks County, Fitzpatrick (R) vs. Wallace (D)

Scott Wallace (D) is expected to be detained in one of the country's closest congressional races against reigning Brian Fitzpatrick (R).

At the Woodside Presbyterian Church in Yardley, Pennsylvania, around 100 voters stood outside before the elections opened at 7am. Volunteers said voter turnout for a midterm election was high, but nothing she saw in the 2016 presidential election. Some wondered if the heavy rain kept the crowd until after work.

Yardley, a suburb north of Philadelphia, is located in the heart of Bucks County, an area that has historically influenced left-to-right voting. As the district votes testify, may indicate a broader mood in the suburbs of the United States.

It was expected that a race in Bucks County between the Democrat Scott Wallace and the Republican Brian Fitzpatrick was one of the closest in the country for the US Congress, although the incumbent, Mr. Fitzpatrick, was favored. In pre-election campaign advertising, Fitzpatrick emphasized his independence as a young legislator who could work with both sides to turn to the electorate of the suburbs and avoided referring to Trump.

Additional coverage by Sam Fleming and James Politi in Washington, Kiran Stacey of Virginia and Lindsay Fortado of Pennsylvania

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