US midterm elections: Who controls Congress?

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US congress

All eyes fixated on Arizona and Nevada, where thousands of uncounted votes held the key to controlling the US Senate.

By winning both state elections, Democrats or Republicans can take control of the Senate. However, a divide would turn the Georgia Senate runoff election on December 6 into a proxy fight for the chamber, which, among other things, controls President Joe Biden’s judicial nominations.

Republicans are inching closer to ousting Biden’s Democrats from the House of Representatives, thereby giving them the power to reject his legislative agenda and authorize a slew of investigations into his administration.

Republicans have gained at least 211 of the 218 House of Representatives (lower house) seats necessary for a majority, while Democrats have taken home 197 seats. That left 27 races, some of which are closely contested, still undecided.

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The Republican House leader, Kevin McCarthy, has already announced his intention to run for speaker if Republicans take over, an outcome he described as inevitable on Wednesday.

Biden told reporters on Thursday he and McCarthy had spoken but said he had not yet abandoned hope that Democrats could still prevail in the House, despite tough odds.

“It’s still alive,” Biden said of their chances.

The outcome of the Arizona and Nevada Senate races, where Democratic incumbents are trying to fend off Republican challengers, may not be known for days yet. Officials in both states have said it could take until next week to finish tallying uncounted mail ballots.

With additional inputs from Reuters.

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