Donald Trump endorses Nancy Pelosi for speaker of the House

Blanche Robertson
November 10, 2018

The move allows Whitaker to oversee a US probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election that has hung over Trump's presidency, and which Whitaker has criticized in the past. The president repeatedly flashed his temper as he insulted several reporters by name, interrupted their questions, ordered some to sit down and deemed one inquiry about his embrace of the description "nationalist" to be "racist".

On Twitter, one of the president's preferred platforms for reaching supporters, Trump has echoed similar messages.

The president was entitled to a partial victory lap.

As the minority party in the Senate, Democrats might need some Republican support to have legal standing to sue Trump under the Appointments Clause, said Andrew Wright, who was a White House lawyer under former President Barack Obama. The Democrats made only slight inroads in Trump country, where they tried to win back white working-class voters.

It will also be more hard for Republicans to make changes to health legislation, including Barack Obama's healthcare law, and could cause problems for Trump's plans to build a border wall with Mexico. In these specific cases, Trump could claim his intervention in the endgame was the GOP's not-so-secret weapon and deciding factor.

Democrats lost governor's races in Florida and Iowa that party operatives were feeling bullish about.

They rescued onetime rising star Sen. Ted Cruz eked out a victory over Rep. Beto O'Rourke.

The Associated Press projected that multiple Democrats in typically red states - Claire McCaskill in Missouri, Heidi Heitkamp in North Dakota, and Joe Donnelly in IN - would lose their Senate seats.

However, in a "blue wave" that was more of a "ripple", Republicans have tightened their grip on the Senate. Bill Nelson loses his recount in Florida.

But not all states had high-profile statewide races.

9 killed in California wildfire as second blaze forces Malibu evacuation
Some 95,000 residents have been evacuated in Ventura County alone, the county's fire department said on Twitter on Friday night. At a briefing Friday, the California Office of Emergency Services announced that 52,000 people have been evacuated.

Every seat in the House was up for grabs on Tuesday.

"Thanks to you, tomorrow will be a new day in America", House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi of California.

"History will see what a good job we did in getting people over the finish line", Trump said, noting that nine of the 11 candidates he campaigned for in the last week won their contests.

The gubernatorial race in Georgia, where Democrat Stacey Abrams was seeking to become the first black woman to be elected governor of a US state, remained too close to call early on Wednesday.

Those lines on congressional maps, drawn by Republican legislatures and governors after the 2010 census, have been widely acknowledged as the most efficient and effective gerrymandering in the two centuries that both parties have practiced it. The Republicans had an advantage in Senate races because elections were held for only 35 seats in the 100-member chamber and many of them were in states that often lean Republican. The Senate is the upper house and sits for a six-year term, which means that Senators can deliberate over long-term legislation and its effects. The second is to try and push for as many concrete solutions to its chief concerns - Iran, Syria and the Palestinians - while Trump remains in the White House. That state, Nevada, ousted Republican incumbent Dean Heller on Tuesday, in spite of Trump's repeated visits and rallies. And sure enough, at least three of those 10 fell to Trump's party on Tuesday.

"The only two paths to that office are regular succession, and advice (and) consent", said a source close to the Senate Judiciary Committee. Further, Democrats had an underwhelming performance in OH, where gubernatorial nominee Richard Cordray lost and incumbent senator Sherrod Brown won by only six points against a weak Republican.

How will the GOP president handle a Democratic-controlled House?

However, Democrats did eke out a narrow win to beat Scott Walker in Wisconsin and comfortably won the governor's office in MI. The Republicans captured the statehouse in Alaska, where it had been held by an Independent. In Georgia, their candidate, Stacey Abrams, pointed to missing votes and allegations of voter suppression in refusing to concede.

So expect to hear a lot about Infrastructure Week or Weeks, as is more likely. This serves up an additional check on what the new but narrow Democratic majority will be able to do legislatively in the next two years. Still, with a Democratic House, investigations aplenty of his presidency are expected.

With divided leadership in Congress and a president who has taken an expansive view of executive power, Washington could be in store for even deeper political polarization and legislative gridlock. The majority party maintains near-total control over setting the agenda, has subpoena power, and decides what individuals, and which officials, to investigate. In the lame-duck session expected to begin later this month, resolving this showdown without a government shutdown will be the first priority. "We also also have to determine whether financial motives are motivating the president and the first family".

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