Republican Romp Extended to State-Level Elections

Republicans swept into control of the U.S. Senate on Tuesday, but that only begins to tell the story of a midterm election that turned into an electoral rout.

From Nevada to New Hampshire, Republicans won resounding victories in state-level elections.

Combined with unexpected victories in gubernatorial races in Illinois, Maryland and Massachusetts, the Republicans are poised to control a higher percentage of state governments than at any point in the past 25 years.

With a few dozen state legislative races still undecided, Republicans have scored a net gain of more than 250 seats across the nation’s 99 legislative chambers, according to an analysis by Ballotpedia, which tracks state-level elections.

Republicans took the majority in nine chambers–winning the Colorado Senate, the Maine Senate, the Minnesota House, the Nevada House and Senate, the New Hampshire House, the New Mexico House, the New York Senate and the West Virginia House. The GOP is set to control at least 64 of the 99 chambers–with two still up for grabs.

Democrats also lost control of the West Virginia Senate, which is now evenly split between the two major parties.

The victories in Nevada were perhaps the most unlikely, as Republicans managed to flip a 25-17 Democratic majority in the state House by picking up 10 seats. It was the first time in more than two decades Republicans won a majority of legislative seats in Nevada.

This is a night to remember. This is a night to savor,” said newly re-elected Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval during his victory speech Tuesday.

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Voters in New Mexico gave Republicans control of the state House for the first time since 1952.

But the high-water mark for Republicans came in Maryland, a state with only 900,000 registered Republicans and more than 2 million registered Democrats. That’s where Republican businessman Larry Hogan pulled the shocker of the night when he handily defeated Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown, hand-picked successor of two-term Gov. Martin O’Malley, dealing a major blow to O’Malley’s 2016 presidential hopes.

They said it couldn’t be done here in Maryland,” Hogan said Tuesday night. “This is the largest mandate for change in Maryland in 63 years.”


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