Eric Holder: There Is Still A Fight For Democrats Against Gop Gerrymandering
In McConnells Kentucky, for instance, Republicans are divided over how far to go during the upcoming redistricting process, which they control in the deep-red state. The more extreme wing wants to crack the Democratic stronghold of Louisville, currently represented by Rep. John Yarmuth. More cautious Republicans like McConnell are willing to settle for smaller changes that reduce Democratic margins while stuffing more Republican voters into hotly contested swing districts.
Make no mistake: McConnells caution isnt rooted in any newfound respect for the integrity of our electoral process. Instead, Republicans are mainly worried about avoiding the costly and embarrassing court decisions that invalidated their most extreme overreaches and potentially turn the line-drawing over to the courts. So McConnells approach doesnt reject partisan gerrymandering it just avoids the type of high-profile city-cracking that could land the Kentucky GOP in federal court.
Filed Candidates By Political Party
As of September 7, 2020, 519 candidates were filed with the Federal Election Commission to run for U.S. Senate in 2020. Of those, 402â199 Democrats and 203 Republicansâwere from one of the two major political parties. In 2018, 527 candidates filed with the FEC to run for U.S. Senate, including 137 Democrats and 240 Republicans.
The following chart shows the number of filed candidates by political party.
Election : The Votes Are In Now Comes The Wait
After a smooth and largely uneventful Election Day, Americans are now waiting for results in key states. Both major-party presidential candidates addressed supporters overnight and foreshadowed a wait and, potentially, a fight.
The Senate outcome rested on a handful of states where Democrats still hoped to topple incumbent Republicans, but their pickup opportunities were dwindling fast on an unusually large battleground that stretched from Maine to Alaska and could tilt with the presidential results. At stake was the ability of the next president to fill his cabinet, appoint judges and pursue his agenda, and the two parties had waged a pitched battle to the end, pummeling voters with advertising backed by record sums of money, totaling hundreds of millions of dollars.
Republicans scored crucial wins in Iowa, Alabama and Montana, and were running stronger than expected in North Carolina and Maine, where the results were still too close to call early Wednesday morning.
Democrats needed a net gain of three or four seats to take Senate control, depending on whether former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., the Democratic nominee, won the presidency, which would allow his vice president, Kamala Harris, to cast tiebreaking votes.
They flipped seats in Colorado, where John Hickenlooper, the former Democratic governor, easily defeated Senator Cory Gardner, and in Arizona, where Mark Kelly, a former astronaut, beat Senator Martha McSally.
Recommended Reading: How Many States Are Controlled By Republicans
Democrats Weigh All Options After Republicans Block Gov’t Funding Bill
WASHINGTON – Democrats are exploring all of their options to avert a government shutdown this week after Republicans on Monday shot down a measure to fund federal agencies and suspend the debt limit, U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin told MSNBC.
“Were exploring all of our possibilities,” he said in an interview on Tuesday but declined to give any details. Durbin added that it would take as many of three or four weeks if Democrats were to try to use a process known as reconciliation to pass a funding measure with fewer than 60 votes.
“Frankly, it isn’t really practical for us to consider that,” he said.
On Monday, the sharply divided Senate failed to advance the legislation ahead of two fast-approaching deadlines with current federal government funding due to expire late Thursday and the U.S. Treasury set to exhaust its borrowing capability sometime between Oct. 15 and Nov. 4.
The 48-50 mostly party-line vote fell short of the 60 votes needed to move ahead with the bill in the 100-seat Senate, although Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer could call another vote. Democrats narrowly control both chambers of Congress and must now find another way to keep the government operating.
“It just amazes me that they would use this procedural weapon … to really jeopardize the economy of this country and its recovery period through this pandemic,” Durbin said.
Who Now Controls The Senate
Warnock, 51, and Ossoff, 33, had won special elections earlier in the month that determined control of the Senate.;
Schumer said in his first speech as majority leader: We have a lengthy agenda, and we need to get it done together.
“This will be an exceptionally busy and consequential period for the United States Senate.”
The ceremony officially cemented a shift in power in the chamber in the wake of the US election.
There is now a 50-50 split in the Senate which means the new Vice President will be able to break any possible ties as she will have the casting vote.
The Vice President also serves as president of the Senate.;
Recommended Reading: Did Trump Say Republicans Are Stupid
A Record Number Of Women Are Serving In The 117th Congress
Women make up just over a quarter of all members of the 117th Congress the highest percentage in U.S. history and a considerable increase from where things stood even a decade ago.
Counting both the House of Representatives and the Senate, 144 of 539 seats or 27% are held by women. That represents a 50% increase from the 96 women who were serving in the 112th Congress a decade ago, though it remains far below the female share of the overall U.S. population. A record 120 women are serving in the newly elected House, accounting for 27% of the total. In the Senate, women hold 24 of 100 seats, one fewer than the record number of seats they held in the last Congress.
This analysis counts voting as well as nonvoting members of Congress. Figures for the 117th Congress exclude two House seats that were vacant as of early January. It also excludes Sens. Kamala Harris, who is expected to resign her seat ahead of her inauguration as vice president on Jan. 20, and Kelly Loeffler, who lost a runoff election in Georgia earlier this month. Both are set to be replaced by men.
This analysis builds on earlier Pew Research Center work to analyze the gender makeup of Congress.
Independent members of Congress are counted with the party they caucus with.
The 2020 general election sent just one new congresswoman to the Senate, Republican Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming, making her the first female senator to represent that state.
The history of women in Congress
Isan Composition Of State Legislatures
The partisan composition of state legislatures refers to which political party holds the majority of seats in the State Senate and State House. Altogether, there are 1,972 state senators and 5,411 state representatives.The breakdown of chamber control after the November 2020 election is as follows:
- 37 chambers
- One chamber with power sharing between the parties
The breakdown of chamber control prior to the November 2020 election was as follows:
- 39 chambers
state government trifecta
As of August 15, 2021, there are 23 Republican trifectas, 15 Democratic trifectas, and 12 divided governments where neither party holds trifecta control.
You May Like: How Many States Are Controlled By Republicans
Seats Up For Election
|Staff Writer Marielle Bricker gives an overview of the 2020 United States Senate election. View other episodes here.|
Twelve seats held by Democrats and 23 seats held by Republicans were up for election in 2020, including the Arizona special election and the Georgia special election. In 2014, the Republican Party picked up nine seats, resulting in their having more seats to defend in 2020. The map and table below show what seats were up for election and the incumbent heading into the election in each race.
|2020 Senate elections|
Election Results : Veto
- See also: State government trifectas
Two state legislatures saw changes in their veto-proof majority statusâtypically when one party controls either three-fifths or two-thirds of both chambersâas a result of the 2020 elections. Democrats gained veto-proof majorities in Delaware and New York, bringing the number of state legislatures with a veto-proof majority in both chambers to 24: 16 held by Republicans and eight held by Democrats.
Forty-four states held regularly-scheduled state legislative elections on November 3. Heading into the election, there were 22 state legislatures where one party had a veto-proof majority in both chambers; 16 held by Republicans and six held by Democrats. Twenty of those states held legislative elections in 2020.
The veto override power can play a role in conflicts between state legislatures and governors. Conflict can occur when legislatures vote to override gubernatorial vetoes or in court cases related to vetoes and the override power.
Although it has the potential to create conflict, the veto override power is rarely used. According to political scientists Peverill Squire and Gary Moncrief in 2010, only about five percent of vetoes are overridden.
|Changes in state legislative veto-proof majorites|
The laws largely focus on tightening voter ID requirements, purging voter rolls and restricting absentee and mail-in ballots.
You May Like: How Many Republicans Are In Congress
Read Also: 1998 People Magazine Trump Quote
Voter Registration And State Political Control
|This section needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.|
The state Democratic or Republican Party controls the governorship, the state legislative houses, and U.S. Senate representation. Nebraskas legislature is unicameral, i.e., it has only one legislative house and is officially non-partisan, though party affiliation still has an unofficial influence on the legislative process.
The simplest measure of party strength in a state voting population is the affiliation totals from voter registration for the 30 states and the District of Columbia as of 2019 that allow registered voters to indicate a party preference when registering to vote. 20 states do not include party preference with voter registration: Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin. The party affiliations in the party control table are obtained from state party registration figures where indicated. Only Wyoming has a majority of registered voters identifying themselves as Republicans; two states have a majority of registered voters identifying themselves as Democrats: and Kentucky .
How Does The Senate Get Around The Filibuster Now
Senators have two options when they seek to vote on a measure or motion. Most often, the majority leader seeks unanimous consent, asking if any of the 100 senators objects to ending debate and moving to a vote. If no objection is heard, the Senate proceeds to a vote. If the majority leader cant secure the consent of all 100 senators, the leader typically files a cloture motion, which then requires 60 votes to adopt. If fewer than 60 senatorsa supermajority of the chambersupport cloture, thats when we often say that a measure has been filibustered.
While much of the Senates business now requires the filing of cloture motions, there are some important exceptions. One involves nominations to executive branch positions and federal judgeships on which, thanks to two procedural changes adopted;in 2013;and;2017, only a simple majority is required to end debate. A second includes certain types of legislation for which;Congress has previously written into law special procedures;that limit the amount time for debate. Because there is a specified amount of time for debate in these cases, there is no need to use cloture to cut off debate. Perhaps the best known and most consequential example of these are special budget rules, known as the budget reconciliation process, that allow a simple majority to adopt certain bills addressing entitlement spending and revenue provisions, thereby prohibiting a filibuster.
Don’t Miss: How Many States Are Controlled By Republicans
Democrats Take Control Of Senate With Twin Georgia Victories
Democrats will have a narrow control of the U.S. Senate. The chamber will be split 50-50, with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris having a tiebreaking vote. Patrick Semansky/APhide caption
Democrats will have a narrow control of the U.S. Senate. The chamber will be split 50-50, with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris having a tiebreaking vote.
Democrats took exceedingly narrow control of the Senate on Wednesday after winning both runoff elections in Georgia, granting them control of Congress and the White House for the first time since 2011.
Democrat Jon Ossoff defeated Republican David Perdue, according to The Associated Press, making him the youngest member of the U.S. Senate and the first Jewish senator from Georgia. Earlier Raphael Warnock, a pastor from Atlanta, defeated GOP Sen. Kelly Loeffler after a bitter campaign. Warnock becomes the first Black Democrat elected to the Senate from a Southern state.
The Senate will now be split 50-50 between the two parties, giving Vice President-elect Kamala Harris the tiebreaking vote.
Ossoff had a narrow lead Wednesday morning when he declared victory.
“It is with humility that I thank the people of Georgia for electing me to serve you in the United States Senate,” he said.
Perdue has not conceded.
Impact on Biden agenda
Four Flips For Democrats One For Republicans
Going into the election, the Democrats held 47 seats in the U.S. Senate while the Republicans held 53.
The Democrats have succeeded in flipping four seats: in Colorado, where former Governor John Hickenlooper easily ousted incumbent Cory Gardner, in Arizona, where former astronaut Mark Kelly defeated incumbent Martha McSally, and in Georgia, where Raphael Warnock defeated incumbent Kelly Loeffler and Jon Ossoff defeated incumbent David Perdue.
The Republicans have wrested back one previously Democratic seat in Alabama, where one-term incumbent Doug Jones was emphatically denied a second term by Tommy Tuberville, a former college head football coach, most recently at the University of Cincinnati.
Outgoing freshman Sens. Jones and Gardner were both considered vulnerable, as each was elected with less than 50% of the vote in 2018.
Republican Thom Tilliss victory over Cal Cunningham in North Carolinaby less than 2 percentage points according to the North Carolina Secretary of States latest tallyis one of several close Senate races that were not called until after election night. In addition to the seats from Georgia, close races also include the victories of incumbent senators Gary Peters and Susan Collins , which were not called until Nov. 4.
Bob Woodward: You Could Write A Whole Book On Lindsey Graham
The House of Representatives voted to pass legislation on Tuesday to prevent a government shutdown at the end of the month and suspend the nations borrowing limit, setting up a showdown with Republicans who insist Democrats should act alone to stave off a looming debt crisis. The party line vote was 220-211.
Govtrackus Is Taking A New Focus On Civic Education
Help us develop the tools to bring real-time legislative data into the classroom.
If youve visited a bill page on GovTrack.us recently, you may have noticed a new study guide tab located just below the bill title. This is part of a new project to develop better tools for bringing real-time legislative data into the classroom. We hope to enable educators to build lesson plans centered around any bill or vote in Congress, even those as recent as yesterday.
Were looking for feedback from educators about how GovTrack can be used and improved for your classroom. If you teach United States government and would like to speak with us about bringing legislative data into your classroom, please reach out!
Also Check: Who Was The Leader Of The Radical Republicans
Don’t Miss: Democrats More Educated Than Republicans
Democrats Take Narrow Control Of Us Senate
4 Min Read
WASHINGTON – Democrats took control of the U.S. Senate on Wednesday when Vice President Kamala Harris swore in three members to give the party a narrow grip on both houses of Congress as well as the White House for the first time in a decade.
The first of President Joe Bidens Cabinet nominees won Senate approval on Wednesday night: Avril Haines, tapped for the job of director of national intelligence.
Democrats Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff of Georgia and Alex Padilla of California took the oath of office in the Senate chamber hours after Biden and Harris were sworn in.
Warnock and Ossoff won upset victories in a pair of Jan. 5 runoff elections to split the Senate 50-50 with Harris, a Democrat, holding the decisive vote in any tie between Republicans and Democrats.
Padilla, Californias first Latino senator, was appointed to fill Harriss Senate seat after she resigned on Monday to assume the second highest U.S. office.
Swearing the new senators in, Harris laughed after she read out her own name as the California senator who had resigned, declaring: Yeah, that was very weird, OK.
The three Democrats give Biden a narrow advantage to pursue policies that include a fresh wave of relief for a nation hammered by the coronavirus pandemic in the face of deep political divisions.
The new arrangement makes Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer the majority leader, with Republican Mitch McConnell demoted to minority leader.