Nancy Pelosi faces nightmare of AOC-led Squad getting even larger

Democrats went into Tuesday night expecting to pad their majority in the House, but instead Republicans were able to unseat several incumbents and close the gap.

Both parties' assumption going into Election Day was that Democrats would be able to snatch at least a dozen more seats from GOP incumbents, adding to their majority in the lower chamber.

The opposite outcome ensued, however, with Republicans picking up several seats and defending representatives in at-risk districts.

Now, Democratic leadership led by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will have to think hard about what went wrong and answer difficult questions on how their ideal Election Night was knocked so hard off track.

Republicans could very likely have a net gain of 10 House seats.

Pelosi led the House with 232 seats compared to Republicans' 197 going into Election Day, but it now appears that the GOP will have somewhere north of 200 seats, holding a solid minority with more power than they've had the last two years.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will have a lot of explaining to do after House Democrats lost several incumbencies to the GOP and was unable to topple some at-risk red districts
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will have a lot of explaining to do after House Democrats lost several incumbencies to the GOP and was unable to topple some at-risk red districts

The Democratic leader along with Chairwoman of House Democrats' campaign arm Rep. Cheri Bustos of Illinois predicted a sunny outcome for Democrats Tuesday, claiming they would defend the 2018 gains and flip districts previously thought to be in safe Republican territory.

'I think we are going to see some wins in these deep red districts that over time you're going to see going from ruby red to purple to even blue,' Bustos said Tuesday.

She also leaned into the uncertainty of this years' election, adding in her remarks' this is an Election Day that may end up looking like an Election Week. '

While Republicans overall are declaring Tuesday a win for their Party in the House, more progressive Democrats, including all four members of the 'squad', earned a win in their House races.

Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York; Ilhan Omar of Minnesota; Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts; and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan all solidly won reelection bids in their respective districts.

They also added a few new members to their 'squad,' to the dismay of Pelosi - a more establishment Democrat whose views often don't line up with those in the more progressive arm of the Party.

Cori Bush, who won in Missouri's 1st District, was immediately embraced by the 'squad.'

The group also added its first two male members with Jamaal Bowman, who won his race in New York's 16th District, and Mondaire Jones in New York 17.

Bowman said, '2018 was just the beginning when my sisters in The Squad were able to win their positions.'

'Now we're more than doubling up, in terms of those who are coming in with an unapologetically progressive platform rooted in centering racial and economic justice,' he added.


Although Ocasio-Cortez is currently the youngest member of the House, elected at 29 and now 31-years-old, Republicans will now hold that seat with Madison Cawthorn in North Carolina.

The 25-year-old is taking over former Rep. Mark Meadow's seat in North Carolina's deep red 11th District after he vacated the seat earlier this year when he became the White House Chief of Staff earlier this year.

Potentially the biggest House win for Republicans was flipping Minnesota's 7th District seat red after trying to unseat Democratic Rep. Collin Peterson there for decades and 15 terms.

Peterson, 76, has held his seat in the midwest state since 1991, but was solidly beat out by Republican Michelle Fischbach who earned 53.6 per cent of the vote to his 39.8 per cent. Only Minneapolis, the state's largest city, and its suburbs voted for Peterson's reelection, yet again.

With the help of the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) and Congressional Leadership Fund (CLF), the GOP had the funds and organization to mobilize House race efforts.

The GOP added several women to their ranks Tuesday night.

'We defied the odds. It's the night of the Republican women, 'House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy told Politico early Wednesday Morning. 'The Democrats never solved one problem in their majority. They promised they would govern differently, and they didn't. '

Republicans beat two South Florida Democratic incumbents in the Miami area, which usually goes strongly blue - especially in presidential elections.

Democratic Rep. Donna Shalala, who at 78 at the time was the oldest freshman woman ever elected, lost her seat to broadcast journalist Maria Elvira Shalazar in Florida's 27th District. And Democratic Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell lost her seat to Republican Carlos Gimenez, a Cuban American, who won the 26th District seat.

Incumbent Democrats were also defeated by GOP candidates in New Mexico, Oklahoma and South Carolina and Republicans were able to hold onto vulnerable districts in places like Texas and elsewhere.

Nancy Mace took Rep. Joe Cunningham's House seat in South Carolina 1st District.

Republican candidate Nicole Malliotakis is ahead in New York's 11th District, which includes Staten Island - and is on track to beat incumbent Democrat Max Rose with a 15.8 per cent margin as of Wednesday morning.

Democratic Reps. Xochitl Torres Small of New Mexico and Kendra Horn of Oklahoma will also both vacate their seats for Republicans to take over in January.

In Virginia's 7th District, which spans a large area west, north west and south west of Richmond, Republican Nick Freitas is on track to defeat Democrat incumbent Abigail Spanberger.

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