Democrats hold off Republican super-majority in Senate
D'Amato, Faircloth, Moseley-Braun are ousted
(AllPolitics, November 3) -- The Democratic Party may not have regained control of either body of Congress, but in the Senate, Democrats stood their ground despite an embattled president and tough re-election fights for several incumbents. Republicans, on the other hand, not only failed to gain the 60 seats they needed to have a filibuster-proof majority, they lost two high-profile GOP seats.
In New York, three-term Sen. Al D'Amato , a longtime opponent of President Bill Clinton, fell to veteran Democratic Rep. Charles Schumer after a long and nasty race.
"We had the battle," D'Amato told supporters
During the race, D'Amato branded Schumer a diehard liberal and Schumer accused D'Amato of being a liar. But late in the campaign, a D'Amato gaffe, coupled with Schumer's sizable war chest, may have determined the outcome.
"Campaigns more often than not must focus on things that divide us," Schumer told supporters Tuesday night. "But government and public service must focus more on the causes that unite us."
Republican Lauch Faircloth apologized to his followers for letting them down after losing to his Democratic challenger, John Edwards. "I feel that I let you down because I should have won," Faircloth said, holding back tears.
"The people of North Carolina voted their hopes instead of their fears," Edwards told his cheering supporters. "I intend to work harder than any person who has ever represented this state in the United States Senate."
The other incumbent senator not joining the members of the 106th Congress refused to give up hope for an eleventh-hour win.
"Today is the 50th anniversary of the headline 'Dewey beats Truman,'" Sen Carol Moseley-Braun of Illinois told her team early Wednesday morning. "We've been hearing the equivalent of 'Dewey beats Truman' all night, and we are not prepared to concede."
Although Moseley-Braun had been in trouble for most of her re-election campaign, she put up a stronger-than-expected fight against conservative multimillionaire Peter Fitzgerald. The 38-year-old Republican state senator kept a low profile during campaign, a strategy some analysts say was designed to let Moseley-Braun beat herself.
Although the balance of power in the Senate remained unchanged, three of the five open Senate seats switched parties. In Ohio, retiring Democratic Sen. John Glenn will be succeeded by Republican George Voinovich. The retiring governor of Ohio easily beat his Democratic opponent, Mary Boyle.
Republicans also earned control of Kentucky's only Democratic Senate seat, being vacated by Wendell Ford. In a tight race in which no one wanted to concede defeat, Republican Rep. Jim Bunning slightly bested Democratic Rep. Scotty Baesler.
In the only open Republican seat, former Indiana Gov. Evan Bayh handily beat his Republican opponent ,Paul Helmke, to gain control of retiring Sen. Dan Coats' seat. Coats had been preceded by both Dan Quayle and Bayh's father, Birch.
With the exception of Faircloth and Moseley-Braun the class of 1992 did well on Tuesday night. Sens. Paul Coverdell (R-Georgia), Judd Gregg (R- New Hampshire), Ben Nighthorse Campbell(R-Colorado), Russ Feingold (D-Wisconsin), Bob Bennett (R-Utah), Barbara Boxer (D-California) and Patty Murray (D-Washington) all won re-election.
Boxer withstood surprisingly strong opposition from state Treasurer Matt Fong, pulling away in the final days by painting him as too conservative on issues close to the hearts of California: abortion, gun control and the environment.
"I have something important to tell you -- we won," declared Boxer, reveling in her victory. "Thanks to all of you and to the president, and to the vice president and to the first lady. Thank you, thank you, thank you."
Boxer, whose daughter is married to the first lady's brother, faced criticism early in the fall for not being quick to criticize the president's behavior in the Monica Lewinsky scandal.
If the 105th Congress accomplished little and voters went to the polls and asked for more of that same, what should we expect from the newly elected 106th Senate? With national exit polls showing a great majority of voters happy with the economy and a lame-duck president facing an impeachment inquiry, issues like campaign finance reform, tobacco legislation, tax cuts,and patient bill of rights may end up in on the floor Senate, again.
Offices where party control switched
Dems poured big bucks into final get-out-the-vote drive
Turnout approaches 38 percent
Minorities see ups, downs in results
Clinton happy with midterm election results
How voters see Lewinsky scandal
Schumer topples D'Amato in New York Senate race
Edwards unseats Faircloth in tight North Carolina race
Moseley-Braun loses to Republican Fitzgerald
Democratic Boxer wins fight for Senate seat
Washington's Murray heads back to the Senate
Incumbent Hollings wins close race in South Carolina
Bunning ekes out win against Baesler
Reid defends Democratic Senate seat in Nevada
Coverdell outdistances Democratic Senate opponent
Campbell wins Colorado
Lincoln defeats Boozman, Dems retain Arkansas Senate seat
Gov. Voinovich wins Senate race in Ohio, defeats Democrat Boyle
Democrat Bayh easily defeats Helmke in Indiana
Analysis: Moderation sweeps the Senate
Democrat Inslee bests incumbent White for Washington House seat
Affair doesn't dampen support for Idaho's Chenoweth
Democrats hold on to Colorado's 2nd district
Sanchez trumps Dornan again in California House race
Udall wins Redmond's New Mexico House seat
Tradeoff in the bluegrass: Parties switch Kentucky House seats
Familiar faces still around the House
Baldwin breaks barrier, becomes first openly lesbian House member
Second time the charm for Hoeffel in Pennsylvania House race
Berkley takes Las Vegas House seat for Democrats
Open Mississippi House seat goes to Democrat Shows
House leader Bonior fends off GOP challenge in Michigan
Snowbarger's Kansas district picked up by Democrat Moore
Green pulls Republican upset in Wisconsin
Simpson keeps Idaho's 2nd district in GOP hands
Toomey takes Pennsylvania's 15th District for GOP
Democrats to make historic gains in House
Republican Sherwood wins open seat in Pennsylvania's 10th House district
Hawaii rehires Abercrombie in House race
Swing Connecticut district chooses Democrat Maloney again
Republican Ryan beats Spottswood in Wisconsin's 1st district
Illinois Rep. Evans bests Baker in closely watched contest
Republican Baker fends off tough challenge in Louisiana House race
Iowa's Boswell fends off Republican n House race
Chabot holds off Democratic challenge
Strickland retains Ohio's 6th district
Bellwether Kentucky, Indiana House races split
Owens first GOP Colorado governor in more than two decades
Moderates inherit the governor's mansions
Former wrestler takes stunning win in Minnesota
Guinn edges Democrat rival to pick up Nevada
Knowles wins rare 2nd term in Alaska
GOP Geringer keeps Wyoming
Easy victory for Oregon Gov. Kitzhaber
Ryan picks up Illinois governorship
Democrat Davis wins heralded California governorship
Cellucci stays as Massachusetts governor
Conservative Johanns wins Nebraska governorship
Gov. Ridge wins big in Pennsylvania
Kempthorne wins landslide in Idaho
Democrat wins Iowa for first time in 30 years
Thompson wins record 4th term in Wisconsin
Taft wins close governor race in Ohio
Keating remains Oklahoma governor
GOP Gov. Janklow keeps South Dakota seat
New Mexico Gov. Johnson retains post
GOP Gov. Almond keeps Rhode Island seat
Gov. Engler easily wins re-election in Michigan
Barnes edges GOP rival for Georgia's top spot
Gov. Huckabee wins re-election in Arkansas
Arizona GOP Hull stays in office
Independent King keeps Maine seat
Kansas Gov. Graves easily wins re-election
Rowland wins re-election in Connecticut
Glendening retains office in Maryland
Siegelmen unseats incumbent James in Alabama
Sundquist stays as Tennessee governor
Texas Gov. George W. Bush wins in landslide
Hodges wins South Carolina governor race
Dean easily keeps Vermont governor seat
Jeb Bush wins big in Florida
Democrat Shaheen retains New Hampshire seat, gets third of GOP vote
Prop. 3 failure places California presidential primary in limbo
Medical marijuana popular at polls
Anti-affirmative action ballot measure
Washington state voters tie minimum wage to inflation
California OKs Indian gambling expansion
South Carolina removes ban on interracial marriage
Michigan voters soundly reject physician-assisted suicide
Plan to boost Calif. cigarette tax too close to call