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Midterm elections 2018: live results

Live updates about the pivotal elections to determine control of Congress.

Democrats have won a majority in the House of Representatives, and Republicans will remain in control of the Senate.

NBC News captured the night as it happened with real-time updates, video, results and analysis.

To sign up for NBC News alerts, please click here. To download the NBC News mobile app, please click here.

ICYMI: Democrats win back House, GOP keeps Senate — and other top takeaways

1375d ago / 6:58 PM UTC

Thank you so much for tuning in to our election night live blog. We saw a lot happen, but we are still waiting on results in a number of races.

Here are some of the top takeaways:

But by 2:04 p.m. ET Wednesday, there were still several races without outcomes because they remained "too close to call." They include:

In the Alaska gubernatorial race, which was considered "too early to call" in the early hours of the morning Wednesday, Republican Mike Dunleavy is the apparent winner, NBC News projects. In the Connecticut gubernatorial race, which was considered "too close to call" overnight, Democrat Ned Lamont is the apparent winner, NBC News projects. 

Thanks again for joining us, and don't forget check back with NBCNews.com for updated coverage.

NBC News: Jon Tester wins in Montana Senate race

1375d ago / 6:35 PM UTC

Two-term Democratic incumbent Sen. Jon Tester is the apparent winner in the Montana Senate race, NBC News projects Wednesday, defeating Republican challenger Matt Rosendale.

The projection came Wednesday afternoon, most than 12 hours after polls closed in state closed. Tester and Rosendale, the Republican state auditor, had been locked in a neck-and-neck race.

With 99 percent of the votes in the state tallied, Tester led Rosendale 49.1 percent to 48 percent with Libertarian Party candidate Rick Breckenridge getting 2.9 percent.

President Donald Trump had campaigned hard in the state against Tester — he held a rally for Rosendale just days before Election Day — hitting the incumbent for his involvement in thwarting the nomination of his choice to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs, White House physician Ronny Jackson.

Nevada voters scrap 'pink tax' on tampons, sanitary napkins

1375d ago / 9:57 AM UTC

Nevada's "pink tax" on feminine hygiene products has been repealed, NBC News projected early Wednesday.

Voters were asked whether tampons and sanitary napkins should be exempt from sales and use tax.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported that opponents said the exemption could result in the loss of  $900,000 to $1.3 million in sales-tax revenue each year. 

Fourteen other states do not subject feminine hygiene products to a sales tax, according to the Tax Foundation, an independent tax policy nonprofit. 

 

Scott Walker loses bid for third term as Wisconsin's governor

1375d ago / 8:50 AM UTC

Former Republican presidential candidate and Trump ally Scott Walker was defeated in his bid for a third term as Wisconsin's governor.

NBC News declared Democrat Tony Evers as the apparent winner at 3:30 a.m. ET.

Speaking of his race, Walker last week said that "whether it was Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Obama or now Donald Trump" any president's first midterm election is "tough."

A NBC/Marist poll published on Oct. 11 found that 45 percent of likely voters in Wisconsin approved of Trump's job performance, while 50 percent disapproved. Trump narrowly won the state in 2016.

NBC News: Rosen beats Heller in Nevada Senate race

1375d ago / 8:13 AM UTC

Democrat Rep. Jacky Rosen has defeated Republican incumbent Sen. Dean Heller in the Nevada Senate race, NBC News projects.

With 93 percent of the Silver State's vote tallied, Rosen, a congresswoman representing the state's 3rd Congressional District, was leading Heller 50 percent to 45.8 percent.

Rosen's win would mark the only pick-up of a Republican-held Senate seat by a Democratic candidate in the 2018 midterm elections.

Moments before NBC News called the race, Heller called Rosen to concede. Rosen then declared victory in a speech in Las Vegas, tell cheering supporters that she loved them, too, before vowing to get to work.

Abrams doesn't concede, says Georgia governor race headed to runoff

1375d ago / 7:23 AM UTC

Stacey Abrams, the Democratic candidate for Georgia governor, addressed supporters early Wednesday morning, telling supporters to expect a runoff against Republican Brian Kemp.

"Georgia still has a decision to make," Abrams said. "If I wasn't your first choice, or if you didn't vote, you're going to have a chance to do a do-over."

NBC News says the race is too close to call. Under Georgia law, if no candidate wins more than 50 percent of the vote, then the top two vote getters advance to a runoff election.

NBC News Exit Poll: Most U.S. voters say Trump tax cuts have not helped personal finances

1375d ago / 6:58 AM UTC

Despite President Donald Trump's promise that tax cuts passed last year would positively affect the personal finances of Americans, only 29 percent of voters say the changes have helped them, according to the NBC News Exit Poll. Nationwide, 45 percent of voters report that the tax changes have not impacted their personal finances, while 22 percent say their finances have been hurt by the changes.

The exit poll also shows that voters in higher-income households are twice as likely as voters in lower-income households to report that tax law changes have helped their personal finances. Seventeen percent of voters with annual household incomes under $30,000 said their personal finances had benefited, compared to 34 percent of those with annual household incomes of $100,000 and higher.

NBC News Exit Poll: LGBT voters remain loyal to Democrats

1375d ago / 6:32 AM UTC

Democratic candidates enjoyed strong support from LGBT voters nationwide on Tuesday, according to the NBC News Exit Poll. Roughly four out of five LGBT voters reported casting a ballot for their district’s Democratic candidate for the House of Representatives. The exit poll also found LGBT voters supporting Democratic Senate and gubernatorial candidates in strong numbers.

Since the 1990s, exit polls have found large majorities of LGBT voters supporting Democratic presidential candidates as well as the party’s candidates for Congress.

The exit poll also found LGBT voters expressing strong concerns about the direction of the country under President Donald Trump. About eight in 10 LGBT voters said things in the country were on the wrong track, and just one in 10 said they cast their House vote to express support for Trump.

Major news: A record number of women were elected to the House

1375d ago / 6:29 AM UTC

A record number of women were elected to the House of Representatives on Tuesday. As of early Wednesday morning, at least 89 women had won seats, breaking the current session's record of 84 women.

See how all the women fared here.

NBC News Exit Poll in Missouri: White evangelicals and gun owners help Hawley beat McCaskill

1375d ago / 6:21 AM UTC

Republican challenger Josh Hawley is projected to pick up a Senate seat tonight in a hard-fought battle with incumbent Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill. NBC News Exit Poll results find Hawley doing particularly well with voters who say immigration is a top issue. He also captured three-quarters of the vote from white evangelicals and 62 percent of the vote from white men.

Voters from gun-owning households also sided with Hawley over McCaskill, who was given an F rating by the National Rifle Association. Among the nearly half of voters (46 percent) who oppose stricter gun measures, Hawley beat McCaskill 77 percent to 21 percent.

NBC News: Wisconsin gubernatorial race too close to call

1375d ago / 6:19 AM UTC

The Wisconsin gubernatorial race between incumbent Republican two-term Gov. Scott Walker and Democratic challenger Tony Evers is too close to call, according to NBC News.

With 93 percent of the vote in the Badger State tallied, Evers, the state schools superintendent, was leading Walker 49.1 percent to 48.9 percent.

Under a bill signed into law by Walker in 2017, any candidate in an election where more than 4,000 votes were cast can demand a recount if he or she lost by 1 percentage point or less.

NBC News: Indicted House candidates win elections in California, New York

1375d ago / 6:18 AM UTC

California Republican Rep. Duncan Hunter, who has been indicted for alleged misuse of campaign funds, and New York Republican Rep. Chris Collins, who was indicted on insider trading charges, have both won their races, NBC News projects.

Hunter, won against Democrat Ammar Campa-Najjar in California's 50th House District and Collins won his deep red district of Western New York against Democrat Nate McMurray, according to NBC News.

Someone set off a poll count alarm, but it definitely was not Jacob Soboroff

1375d ago / 6:14 AM UTC

Except maybe it was, and on live TV, no less.

NBC News Exit Poll: White evangelical women stand squarely with the Republicans

1375d ago / 6:01 AM UTC

White evangelical women are not abandoning the Republican Party or President Donald Trump, the NBC News Exit Poll found. 

While both white evangelical men and white evangelical women were less likely to vote for Republicans for the House in 2018 than they were to vote for Trump in 2016, both groups remain steadfast Republican supporters and the decline is actually steeper for white evangelical men. In fact, the 11-point gender gap that existed among white evangelicals in 2016 shrunk to six points in 2018.

Why are evangelical women continuing to support Republican candidates in 2018? While slightly more than a quarter of white evangelical women either somewhat or strongly disapprove of the way Donald Trump is handling his job as president, the remaining three-quarters approve of Trump’s job performance. These numbers are similar for white evangelical men. 

Nelson to deliver 'full statement' tomorrow, campaign says

and

1375d ago / 6:00 AM UTC

Three-term Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson of Florida, trailing Republican challenger Rick Scott by more than 55,000 votes as of 12:50 a.m. ET, will make a "full statement tomorrow," a campaign spokesperson said early Wednesday.

“This is obviously not the result Senator Nelson's campaign has worked hard for," the spokesperson said. "The senator will be making a full statement tomorrow to thank all those who rallied for his cause."

Moments earlier, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement that President Donald Trump had made congratulatory calls to winning Republican Senate candidates, including Scott.

The race is too close to call, according to an NBC News projection. 

With 99 percent of the vote tallied, Scott, the outgoing GOP governor, had 50.3 percent of the vote, while Nelson had 49.7 percent. However, Florida has a mandatory recount rule if candidates are within 0.5 percent of each other. 

If Scott wins, it would add to the GOP's growing cushion in the Senate. Republicans had, as of 12:30 a.m. ET, successfully held several seats they were defending (including in Tennessee and Texas) and picked up two other seats held by Democrats in Indiana and Missouri.

NBC News Exit Poll: Just 1 in 4 voters say Trump's trade policies helped their local economies

1375d ago / 5:50 AM UTC

Just 25 percent of voters nationwide report that President Donald Trump’s trade policies have helped their local economies, according to the NBC News Exit Poll. Thirty-seven percent of voters think Trump’s trade policies have provided no local economic benefit, while 29 percent think trade policies have actually hurt their local economies.

By region, voters in the South and Midwest are the most likely to report that Trump’s trade policies have helped their local economies (29 percent).

Out of the states in which NBC News Exit Polls were conducted, voters in Tennessee and West Virginia are among the most likely to say that Trump’s trade policies have helped their local economies. In contrast, about three in 10 voters in Wisconsin, Ohio and Virginia think Trump’s trade policies have hurt their local economies.

Mitt Romney in victory speech remembers slain Utah Mayor Maj. Brent Taylor

1375d ago / 5:38 AM UTC

In his victory speech Tuesday, Mitt Romney remembered the Utah mayor who was killed last week while serving with the National Guard in Afghanistan.

Romney, the Republican presidential nominee in 2012 and the former governor of Massachusetts, defeated Democrat Jenny Wilson to win election to the Senate, NBC News projected.

"Now quite seriously, an unfathomable price in patriot blood was paid to give us the right to vote. This week that price was paid again," he told supporters. "Major Brett Taylor — husband, father of seven and mayor of North Ogden - gave the last full measure of devotion for freedom’s cause."

"In his last post on Facebook he quoted President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who said this: 'In the truest sense, freedom cannot be bestowed. It must be achieved,'" Romney said. "Thank you, Major Taylor, and thank you to all of those  who serve our country in the cause of freedom."

Taylor, 39, the mayor of North Ogden, was killed Saturday in an apparent "insider attack" while serving with his unit in Kabul, which is helping to train Afghan defense forces.

'I'm so f------ proud of you guys': O'Rourke offers impassioned concession

1375d ago / 5:35 AM UTC

Democratic Rep. Beto O’Rourke, who lost his Senate bid to incumbent Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, offered an impassioned concession speech late Tuesday, pledging to work with his former opponent, emphatically praising his supporters, and expressing a desire to help unite the country.

“We’re not about being against anybody,” O’Rourke told a screaming crowd in El Paso, Texas, where his campaign headquarters was located. “We're not going to define ourselves by who or what we're against, or what we’re afraid of.”

“We are a great people. Ambitious. Defined by our aspirations,” he said. “Every single one of us, Republican, Democrats, independents, from the biggest of cities, to the smallest of towns, the people of Texas want to do and will do the great work of this country.”

O’Rourke, a 45-year-old congressman who represents an El Paso-area district, said he’d called Cruz to congratulate him on his win “and to wish him well going forward.”

“At this time of division, the country’s been as polarized as I can member it in my life,” he said. “If there's anything we can do to help him in his position of public trust… in any way that brings us back together, around the big things we want to achieve.”

O’Rourke, his hoarse voice beginning to crack, then turned his attention to his adoring crowd.

“I’m so f------ proud of you guys,” he said, prompting loud cheers.

WATCH: 'God bless Texas,' Cruz says in victory speech after defeating O'Rourke

1375d ago / 5:20 AM UTC

NBC News Exit Poll in North Dakota: Voters seeking shared view of government pick Cramer over Heitkamp

1375d ago / 5:18 AM UTC

Republican challenger Rep. Kevin Cramer is projected to beat Democratic Sen. Heidi Heitkamp in North Dakota, a reliably red state that President Donald Trump won by 36 points in 2016. 

The NBC News Exit Poll in North Dakota on Tuesday found that about four in 10 voters said having a candidate who shared their view of government was important in their vote. About half as many (19 percent) reported that they were looking for a Senate candidate who was willing to compromise.

Among voters making a Senate choice based on a shared view of government, Cramer beat Heitkamp by a 39-point margin (69 percent to 30 percent).

WATCH: Pelosi celebrates Democrats regaining control in the House

1376d ago / 5:08 AM UTC

An update on how women fared so far on Election Day

1376d ago / 5:04 AM UTC

This year, 276 women competed for seats in the Senate, House and governor’s mansions across the nation. Follow the outcomes of those races here.

Michigan goes green

1376d ago / 5:02 AM UTC

Michigan voters on Tuesday approved legalized marijuana for recreational use, NBC News projected, as 58 percent of the state's residents chose "yes" on "Proposal 1," with 55.7 percent of the vote tallied.

Michigan already had a sizable medical marijuana industry, but Tuesday's vote means residents 21 and older can now consume the drug and grow up to 12 plants for personal use.

The state will also be able to issue licenses for dispensaries and other marijuana-related businesses, with taxes on the businesses projected to bring in $112 million to $275 million a year, according to estimates collected by The Detroit Free Press.

Michigan becomes the 10th state to legalize recreational marijuana.

Pelosi's deputy chief of staff: Trump called to offer congratulations on House wins

1376d ago / 5:01 AM UTC

NBC News: Republican Josh Hawley defeats Sen. Claire McCaskill in Missouri

1376d ago / 4:50 AM UTC

Republican Josh Hawley, Missouri’s attorney general, defeated Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill, NBC News projects.

McCaskill swept into office with a little less than 50 percent of the vote in 2006's Democratic wave, but this year faced a tough challenger in Hawley in the state that had been trending toward Republicans.

McCaskill was the first member of Congress to endorse Hillary Clinton for president in 2016 and has built a reputation for defending Democratic policies.

Hawley's win is a Republican pickup as the GOP retains control of the Senate.

NBC News Exit Poll: The voters who powered the Democrats’ bid to retake the House

1376d ago / 4:49 AM UTC

After a hard-fought contest largely centered on President Donald Trump’s performance and policies, the Democratic Party will wrest control of the House of Representatives from the Republicans, NBC News projected.

The Democrats built their victory with a coalition that in many respects looked very similar to the voters who backed Hillary Clinton in 2016, according to results from the NBC News Exit Poll. These included voters of color, who voted for Democrats by solid margins. African Americans backed Democratic House candidates over Republican candidates by 90 percent to 9 percent, Asian Americans by 77 percent to 23 percent, and Latinos by 68 percent to 30 percent.

Other key elements of the Democrats’ coalition included urban, highly educated and secular groups of voters who have trended toward the party in recent years, including those who claim no religion (70 percent to 28 percent), those with a post-graduate degree (65 percent to 33 percent), and voters living in large cities (66 percent to 32 percent). The Democrats relied upon strong support of young voters — those under 30 supported the party by 67 percent to 31 percent, a margin that shrank, but nevertheless remained solid, among white young voters. 

WATCH: DeSantis in victory speech says 'it's the voice of the people that rules'

1376d ago / 4:47 AM UTC

Important pizza update in Idaho

1376d ago / 4:44 AM UTC

NBC News Exit Poll in Florida: DeSantis wins with strong backing of conservatives

1376d ago / 4:32 AM UTC

Republican Ron DeSantis beat Democrat Andrew Gillum to win the Florida governor race, with solid backing from more than eight in 10 conservatives, six in 10 white voters and 57 percent of male voters as well as 57 percent of voters age 65 and older. 

DeSantis was endorsed by President Donald Trump during the primaries, and 92 percent of voters who approve of the Trump’s job performance voted for DeSantis.

Mississippi special Senate election heads to runoff, NBC News projects

1376d ago / 4:30 AM UTC

The Senate special election in Mississippi between Republican Cindy Hyde-Smith, Democrat Mike Espy and two other candidates will head to a Nov. 27 runoff, NBC News projects.

Hyde-Smith and Espy will advance to the runoff.

Under Mississippi state rules, if no candidate gets 50 percent of the vote, the top two head to a one-on-one runoff.

With 80 percent of the vote in the state tallied, Espy, a former U.S. secretary of agriculture, led appointed-incumbent Hyde-Smith with 41.2 percent to her 40.4 percent.

Republican Chris McDaniel had 16.9 percent, while Democrat Tobey Bartee had 1.5 percent.

Hyde-Smith was appointed in April to the Senate seat that being vacated by Thad Cochran, who resigned due to poor health.

The special Senate election is different from the state's other Senate race, which saw Republican Roger Wicker win re-election Tuesday night.

Analysis: Midterm victories underscore Trump's GOP takeover

1376d ago / 4:28 AM UTC

As Republicans continue to post strong showings in tight Senate and gubernatorial elections, NBC "Meet the Press" host Chuck Todd says the results are evidence that President Donald Trump has taken control of the GOP.

NBC News has projected that Democrats will gain control of the House, which Trump largely ignored in the final weeks of the campaign. But at the same time, the GOP is poised to make gains in the Senate after Trump barnstormed the country with a hard-line immigration message aimed directly at the GOP base. 

While some of Trump's picks are struggling in gubernatorial races, two of his more conservative picks are poised for victory in those races, too. Republican Ron DeSantis is the apparent winner in Florida while Georgia's Brian Kemp is in strong position in that race. 

“The Republican Party is Donald Trump’s party. He may have been hijacking a political party in ’16 and borrowing it. He has remade it and he knows how to activate it," Todd said.

"Why is Andrew Gillum likely to lose and not win? Why is Stacey Abrams likely to lose and not win? I would argue that Donald Trump figured out how to get his base out.”

Yes, Colin Allred, winner in Texas' 32nd House District, played football

1376d ago / 4:22 AM UTC

Democrat Colin Allred is the winner in Texas' 32nd Congressional District, NBC News projects, defeating Republican incumbent Rep. Pete Sessions.

With 63 percent of the vote in, Allred has 52 percent of the vote to Sessions' 46.2 percent, according to NBC News. 

The congressman-elect is a former NFL linebacker who attended Baylor University in Texas. Timothy Burke, director of video at The Daily Beast, dug through some archives to find some grainy video of Allred getting a sack during his days with the Baylor Bears.

NBC News Exit Poll in Texas: White voters helped boost Cruz to victory

1376d ago / 4:19 AM UTC

The Texas Senate vote broke along racial lines, according to the NBC News Exit Poll. Republican Sen. Ted Cruz was able to pull off a tight victory with the backing of white voters. Democratic challenger Beto O’Rourke won 63 percent of the Latino vote and 89 percent of the black vote, but that was not enough to overcome Cruz’s support among white voters, which came in at 65 percent -- 71 percent of white men and 59 percent of white women. 

The issue of immigration played to the Republicans' advantage. Three-quarters of Texas voters who named this as their top concern voted for Cruz. The incumbent also won 59 percent of those who said his support for the confirmation of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh was an important factor in their vote.

Trump tweets on election results: 'Tremendous success'

1376d ago / 4:18 AM UTC

President Donald Trump made his first public comments about the 2018 midterm election results on Tuesday night, tweeting out: "Tremendous success tonight. Thank you to all!"

 

NBC News: Republican Mike DeWine wins Ohio gubernatorial race

1376d ago / 4:14 AM UTC

NBC News projects that Republican Mike DeWine will be elected governor of Ohio, defeating Democrat Richard Cordray. 

With 92 percent of votes counted, DeWine leads Cordray with over 51 percent of the vote. Cordray lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau under former President Barack Obama, while DeWine currently serves as Ohio's attorney general.

Click here to view updated results from Ohio

Interesting 2018 midterm firsts so far

1376d ago / 4:13 AM UTC

Here are some interesting firsts in the 2018 midterm elections, so far:

Women candidates:

Most of the early Republican-to-Democratic House flips of the evening were by Democratic women.

  • Jennifer Wexton defeated Republican Rep. Barbara Comstock in Virginia's 10th District.
  • Donna Shalala won an open seat to replace Republican Rep. Ileana Ross-Lehtinen in Florida's 2th District.
  • Mary Gay Scanlon was elected to the House from Pennsylvania, winning in a redrawn 5th District, Chrissy Houlahan won in the state's newly constituted 6th District, Susan Wild won in the new 7th District. They are the first women to be elected from Pennsylvania to the House since 2014.
  • Sharice Davids defeated Republican Rep. Kevin Yoder in Kansas' 3rd District.  Davids is Native American, gay and an MMA fighter.
  • Mikie Sherrill won in New Jersey's 11th District, picking up the seat held by outgoing Republican Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen.
  • Elaine Luria defeated Republican Rep. Scott Taylor in Virginia's 2nd District. 

They will join women who didn’t flip districts but whose primary wins are sending them to the House:

  • Ayanna Pressley in Massachusetts' 7th District became the first black woman elected to the House from the state.
  • Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in New York's 14th District became the youngest woman elected to Congress.
  • Veronica Escobar (16th District) and Sylvia Garcia (29th District) became the first Latinas elected to Congress from Texas.

Vice president’s brother: For the first time a vice president’s brother was elected to the House. Mike Pence’s brother, Greg Pence, was elected to Congress in Indiana's 6th District.

First gay man elected governor: Democrat Jared Polis defeated Republican Walker Stapleton to win the Colorado governor’s race and become the first openly gay man to be elected governor.

Voting rights: Florida passed Amendment 4, restoring voting rights to felons. The amendment will restore voting rights to 1.4 million Floridians, the majority black or Latino men. Florida was one of only three states — and by far the biggest — to bar people from voting even after completing their sentences.

NBC News: Democrat Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez becomes youngest woman ever elected to Congress

1376d ago / 4:10 AM UTC

Democrat Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has won her race for New York's 14th Congressional District, NBC News projected, making her the youngest woman ever elected to Congress.

Ocasio-Cortez, 29, shocked the political world in June when she defeated incumbent and top-ranking Decmorat Rep. Joseph Crowley, the House Democratic Caucus chairman, in a huge upset the congressional primary. 

The political newcomer easily defeated Republican challenger Anthony Pappas in the deep blue Queens and Bronx district. With 75 percent of the vote tallied, Ocasio-Cortez handily defeated Pappas, with 78.9 percent of the vote to his 13.1 percent.

The previous youngest woman to go to Congress was Republican Elise Stefanik, also from New York, who was elected to the House in 2014 at age 30.

Democrat Andrew Gillum concedes Florida gubernatorial race

1376d ago / 4:06 AM UTC

Democrat Andrew Gillum has conceded the Florida gubernatorial race to Republican Ron DeSantis.

Gillum announced his concession in a speech from his campaign headquarters in Tallahassee, telling the crowd, "Even though I won't be the next governor of Florida, I still plan to be on the front lines."

“We still have to be willing to show up every single day and demand our seat at the table. I still believe and I still trust in the voters. I still believe that there is more of us that believe in what is common and what is decent," Gillum said.

Shortly after Gillum began making his concession speech, NBC News declared DeSantis the apparent winner in the race.

With 99 percent of the state's vote tallied, DeSantis, a former Republican member of Congress from Florida, had 49.9 percent, while Gillum had 48.9 percent.

NBC News Exit Poll: Gender and partisan split on whether sexual harassment is a serious problem

1376d ago / 4:02 AM UTC

The NBC News Exit Poll asked voters nationwide how serious a problem sexual harassment is in the United States today. While a strong majority say it is a very or somewhat serious problem, there were partisan and gender divisions. 

Fully half of female voters consider sexual harassment to be a very serious problem today, compared with about four in 10 male voters. In contrast, nearly twice as many men as women say that sexual harassment is not too serious or not at all serious today.

There were also differences between the parties. A majority of Democratic women (66 percent) and Democratic men (59 percent) say sexual harassment is very serious in today’s world, while just one-quarter of Republican men and one-third of Republican women consider sexual misconduct to be a very serious problem. In fact, about three in 10 Republican men say sexual harassment is not a serious problem in the country today.

WATCH: Republican Marsha Blackburn celebrates Senate win in Tennessee

and

1376d ago / 4:00 AM UTC

While Blackburn celebrated, Democrat Phil Bredesen addressed the room of dejected supporters with a very brief speech. He said he tried to call Blackburn to congratulate her, but she was already on stage declaring victory. 

"I applied for the job and got a rejection letter," Bredesen said, before going on to praise his campaign staff.

"This race for me had something that I’d never seen before and that's the extent of the volunteer activity," he said.

The ballroom is slowly clearing but a band rocks on.

 

O'Rourke supporters aren't ready to leave election night party

and

1376d ago / 3:51 AM UTC

NBC News reporter Garrett Haake, reporting from Democratic Rep. Beto O'Rourke's election night party in El Paso, Texas, says the crowd is going nowhere, despite projections that the candidate has lost to incumbent Republican Sen. Ted Cruz. 

The crowd cheered when Jumbotrons announced that Democrats retook control of the House, and chanted "Beto! Beto!" 

Sanders on GOP Senate: 'It's a huge win for the president'

1376d ago / 3:43 AM UTC

NBC News Exit Poll: Majority of voters don’t think Trump should be impeached

1376d ago / 3:31 AM UTC

A majority of voters today do not think President Donald Trump should be impeached, according to NBC News Exit Poll results. Fifty-four percent of voters say Congress should not impeach Trump, while 41 percent say Congress should do so. 

But the idea of impeaching Trump finds strong support among Democrats. Among voters in today’s midterm elections, about eight in 10 Democrats say that Trump should be impeached and removed from office. A majority of independent voters are opposed to impeachment; not surprisingly, so are almost all Republicans.

NBC News: Democrats win control of the House of Representatives

1376d ago / 3:30 AM UTC

NBC News projects that the Democratic Party will take control of the House of Representatives.

A party needs to control 218 seats in the House for a majority.

Some of the key House races that  allowed NBC News to call Democratic control of the House included MN-3, CO-6, FL-27, NY-11, VA-2, TX-32, MI-11.

Republicans will hold the Senate after Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, defeated Democratic challenger Beto O'Rouke, NBC News projects — setting up a Congress divided. 

WATCH: Sen. Ted Cruz holds on to his Texas senate seat, amid strong challenge

1376d ago / 3:27 AM UTC

NBC News: Republican Roger Wicker wins Senate race in Mississippi

1376d ago / 3:25 AM UTC

Republican Roger Wicker has won re-election to the Senate in Mississippi, NBC News projects.

With 40 percent of the vote in the solidly red state tallied, Wicker had 59 percent and Democrat David Baria had 38.9 percent.

Wicker had been expected to easily win Tuesday night.

NBC News: Democrat Laura Kelly wins Kansas gubernatorial race

1376d ago / 3:24 AM UTC

Democratic State Sen. Laura Kelly has won the Kansas gubernatorial race against Republican Secretary of State Kris Kobach, NBC News projects.

Kelly defeated Kobach and independent Greg Orman on Tuesday in a race that was considered a toss-up by election watchers. Kobach had defeated Gov. Jeff Colyer in the Republican primary and had President Donald Trump's endorsement.

He was perhaps best known nationally for being the vice chairman of the Trump administration's election-fraud commission.

NBC News: Cramer wins North Dakota Senate race, beating Heitkamp

1376d ago / 3:21 AM UTC

Republican Rep. Kevin Cramer has defeated Democratic Sen. Heidi Heitkamp in the North Dakota Senate race, NBC News projects.

With 25 percent of the vote in the state tallied, Cramer, who serves as North Dakota's sole member of Congress, was beating Heitkamp 57.9 percent to 42.1 percent.

Cramer's win — which picks off a seat from the Democrats — boosts the GOP's chance of keeping control of the U.S. Senate.

Earlier this fall, Cramer and Heitkamp had been running a close race, but in recent weeks Cramer opened up a comfortable lead in the polls over his one-term opponent. 

NBC News Exit Poll: 1 in 6 voters waited until this week to decide their vote for Congress

1376d ago / 3:19 AM UTC

Despite months of being bombarded with political ads, phone calls and texts — and a constant drumbeat of political news coverage on television and social media — one out of six U.S. voters managed to hold off until this week to decide on their vote for Congress, according to results from the NBC News Exit Poll.

Who waits this long? Late-deciding voters were particularly concentrated among those who don’t identify with the two major parties — they made up roughly four in 10 of the voters who decided in the past week. By contrast, Democrats and Republicans were sure of their vote earlier, making up about three-quarters of those deciding on their vote for the House before the last week of the campaign.

NBC News: Republicans maintain control of the Senate as Ted Cruz wins Texas

1376d ago / 3:18 AM UTC

Republicans maintained control of the Senate Tuesday as Sen. Ted Cruz won reelection against Democratic challenger Beto O'Rourke in one of the most closely watched races in the country, NBC News projects.

Cruz held off a strong challenge from O'Rourke, the 45-year-old congressman from El Paso. O'Rourke's unique campaign style and wildly successful fundraising — he raised more than $70 million in his bid for Senate — made the race highly watched, even as the Democrat trailed in the polls.

Democrats have not won a statewide election in Texas since 1994.

With 79 percent of the vote tallied, Cruz was leading O'Rourke 51 percent to 48.4 percent.

NBC News: Sharice Davids flips Kansas' 3rd House District

1376d ago / 3:16 AM UTC

NBC News projects that Democrat Sharice Davids will defeat Republican Kevin Yoder in Kansas' 3rd Congressional District, a crucial pickup for House Democrats' plan to regain control.

With her victory, Davids becomes the first openly LGBTQ person elected to Congress in Kansas.

Davids is also one of the first two Native American women elected to Congress — and the pair made history on the same night. Debra Haaland, who NBC News projects is the winner in New Mexico's 1st Congressional District, is also Native American.

Read more about Davids' victory at NBC Out.

Ayanna Pressley wins, becoming first African-American woman elected to House by Massachusetts

1376d ago / 3:14 AM UTC

Massachusetts voters have elected the first African-American woman to a U.S. House seat.

Ayanna Pressley, who was also the first black woman elected to the Boston City Council, was elected to the 7th Congressional District in Massachusetts.

Pressley did not have Republican challenger. She defeated Democratic Rep. Mike Capuano, a 10-term incumbent, in a high-profile Democratic primary in September.

Earlier Tuesday, Pressley tweeted  her encouragement that people "vote for activist leaders who will work in and with community," adding: "Vote, because this is your democracy & your voice matters."

NBC News: Phil Scott defeats Christine Hallquist in Vermont governor race

1376d ago / 3:10 AM UTC

NBC News projects that Phil Scott, the Republican governor of Vermont, has been elected to a second term. Scott defeated Democrat Christine Hallquist, a former electricity executive.

Hallquist's bid attracted national attention because of her status as the first transgender woman to be nominated for governor by a major party

Scott is popular in the Green Mountain State, where voters in this election split their ballots and re-elected independent Sen. Bernie Sanders and Democratic Rep. Peter Welch, according to NBC News projections

NBC News Exit Poll: A clear divide between white veterans and veterans of color in midterm vote

1376d ago / 3:09 AM UTC

Veterans of America’s armed services have registered relatively strong support for Republican candidates in the 2018 midterm elections, according to the NBC News Exit Poll. More than half of all veterans voted for the GOP candidate in their House districts, compared to just four in 10 voters who are not veterans. Veterans made up 13 percent of those casting ballots in 2018.

Today’s results are consistent with the 2016 presidential race, when 60 percent of veterans voted for Republican Donald Trump. But there is a clear divide between white veterans and veterans of color. While about two-thirds of white veterans voted for the Republican ticket for House, nearly the exact opposite is true for veterans of color: About two-thirds of these veterans supported the Democratic candidate. 

WATCH: Sen. Graham says Attorney General Sessions likely out after midterms

1376d ago / 3:05 AM UTC

NBC News: Mitt Romney wins Utah Senate race

1376d ago / 3:04 AM UTC

Mitt Romney has won the U.S. Senate race in Utah, NBC News projects.

Romney, the Republican presidential nominee in 2012 and the former governor of Massachusetts, defeated Democrat Jenny Wilson in the race, NBC News projected.

He will replace GOP Sen. Orrin Hatch, who announced earlier this year that he will not seek election to an eighth term.

Romney, who grew up in Michigan, has a home in Utah and deep ties to the state, including through his Mormon faith. He was credited with rescuing the troubled 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, and he has a network of well-placed political supporters in the state.

Romney's projected win marks a triumphant return to public office for the 71-year-old Republican dignitary.

The former presidential nominee, an outspoken critic of President Donald Trump, could become a powerful foe of the White House in the Senate GOP caucus. However, a Romney confidante told NBC News earlier this year it was unlikely he would take that approach.

California 2018 campaign spending topped $1 billion

1376d ago / 3:01 AM UTC

California spending for the 2018 election cycle, which includes congressional midterms, a gubernatorial race and a number of statewide initiatives, has exceeded $1 billion, campaign data publication California Target Book estimates. 

The spending includes more than $287 million on congressional candidates and nearly $20 million alone on a U.S. Senate race between two Democrats, according to Target Book's estimates.

That figure was outdone by more than $366 million spent on statewide initiatives, which included a proposal to allow cities to expand rent control and another that would repeal a 12 cents per-gallon gas tax.

Spending on campaigning for top statewide offices, including governor, exceeded $222 million, the Target Book report found. Expenditures for state legislative seats surpassed $156 million.

Fred Smoller, associate professor of political science at Chapman University in Orange, California, said, "We’ve never seen anything like the money spent on these congressional races."

"The tremendous interest in the election is reflected in the money and in the turnout," he said.

NBC News: Jared Polis wins in Colorado, becomes America's first gay man elected governor

1376d ago / 2:58 AM UTC

NBC News projects that Democrat Jared Polis has been elected governor of Colorado.

Polis, who currently serves as representative from Colorado's 2nd Congressional District, will become the nation's first openly gay man elected governor. 

The Colorado Democrat defeated Republican Walker Stapleton, the Colorado state treasurer.

Read NBC Out's profile of Jared Polis here

Democratic Sen. Donnelly concedes to GOP challenger Mike Braun

and

1376d ago / 2:53 AM UTC

Incumbent Democratic Sen. Joe Donnelly issued a statement after conceding to GOP challenger Mike Braun in the Indiana Senate race.

"A few minutes ago, I called Mike Braun and congratulated him on winning a hard-fought race," Donnelly said in the statement. "I’d like to thank every single American who believed in this campaign and worked to make it successful, and every Hoosier whom I have come across over the last six years who helped me to better serve my state."

"It has been one of the greatest honors of my life to represent Indiana in the Senate," he added. "I wish Mike the best, and I hope he makes every single Hoosier proud as our senator."

NBC News: Texas Senate race too early to call

1376d ago / 2:52 AM UTC

The closely watched Texas Senate race between incumbent Republican Sen. Ted Cruz and Democratic challenger Beto O'Rourke is too early to call, according to NBC News.

With 73 percent of the vote in the Lone Star State tallied, Cruz was up over O'Rourke, a congressman representing an El Paso-area district, 49.8 percent to 49.6 percent.

O'Rourke, who had raised record-shattering amounts of cash during his race, and Cruz had been running neck and neck in recent polls. 

NBC News Exit Poll: For first time since 2008, independent voters break for the Democrats

1376d ago / 2:52 AM UTC

Should the Democratic Party capture the House of Representatives in today’s midterm elections, they’ll have independent voters to thank, according to results from the NBC News Exit Poll. By more than a 10-point margin, voters who reject party labels and describe themselves as either independent or "something else" reported casting their votes for House Democrats over Republicans. Independent voters made up three in 10 voters casting ballots in today’s midterm elections.

The shift represents a substantial swing to the Democrats compared to the recent past: Exit polls from previous years show that independent voters have supported GOP presidential and Congressional candidates in every national election since 2010.  The last time Democrats won the support of independents at the national level was when the party’s ticket was first headlined by Barack Obama, who captured a majority of the group’s vote in his successful first bid for the presidency in 2008.

Rashida Tlaib is first Palestinian-American woman elected to Congress

1376d ago / 2:50 AM UTC

Rashida Tlaib won Michigan's 13th Congressional District on Tuesday, NBC News projects, becoming the first Palestinian-American woman elected to Congress.

Tlaib was previously elected to the Michigan House of Representatives.

Read more about Tlaib on NBC News.

NBC News Exit Poll: Voters who sat out 2016 break strongly for Democrats in 2018

1376d ago / 2:39 AM UTC

About one in 10 U.S. voters casting ballots in today’s midterm elections say they didn’t vote in the 2016 presidential election. Results from the NBC News Exit Poll show that these voters broke heavily for the Democrats in the race for Congress, with 72 percent of these voters casting a ballot for the Democratic House candidate in their districts while just 26 percent supported the Republican. 

Those who voted for third-party candidates in 2016 also swung to the Democrats in 2018, though by a smaller margin, 57 percent to 40 percent. Not surprisingly, those who voted for Democrat Hillary Clinton in 2016 overwhelmingly supported Democratic House candidates; Trump voters were similarly loyal to Republican candidates. 

WATCH: Initial House estimates favor Democrats, but not without danger

1376d ago / 2:35 AM UTC

Top 10 highlights on election night so far

1376d ago / 2:33 AM UTC
  • NBC News estimates that Democrats have a 65 percent chance of taking control of the House.

  • NBC News projects that Indiana Democratic incumbent Sen. Joe Donnelly lost his seat to Republican challenger Mike Braun, making the Democratic Party's path to regain control of the Senate even more difficult.
  • Georgia voters are suing the state's secretary of state, Brian Kemp, who is also the GOP candidate for governor, over his ability to impartially administer a potential vote recount.
  • For the first time in at least a decade, voters cite health care as their top priority, surpassing the economy.
  • Trump factor: Two-thirds of voters say Trump played a role in their vote.
  • Across the country voters are reporting broken machines, long lines, and other problems with casting their ballot, forcing some polling locations to extend their hours.

  • It's not just candidates on the ballot — a number of states are voting on marijuana, minimum wage, Medicare and more.
  • President Trump is keeping a close eye on returns from the White House.
  • Spending on traditional media ads increased by roughly $1 billion compared to the 2014 midterm election, with the most amount being spent in Florida.
  • One in 4 Latino voters said today was their first time voting in a midterm election, according to exit polls.

 

Florida gives more than 1 million people their voting rights back

1376d ago / 2:23 AM UTC

Florida's Amendment 4 passed on Tuesday night, giving an estimated 1.5 million Floridians their voting rights back. 

The Constitutional amendment — which needed at least 60 percent of the vote to pass — will automatically restore voting rights to ex-felons who have completed their sentences. Those convicted of murder or sex crimes are not eligible for rights restoration under the bill.

Florida is one of four states that bans felons from voting permanently — unless they can get clemency from the state — and the law disproportionately affects minorities, who are convicted at higher rates. The amendment is part of a national trend that seeks to restore voting rights to ex-felons.

Sen. McCaskill: 'I have no flipping idea what’s going to happen tonight'

1376d ago / 2:16 AM UTC

The incumbent Democratic senator's race against Republican Josh Hawley is too close to call, NBC News projects. 

NBC News: Blackburn beats Bredesen in Tennessee Senate race

1376d ago / 2:10 AM UTC

Republican Marsha Blackburn has defeated Democrat Phil Bredesen in the Tennessee Senate race, NBC News projects.

With 42 percent of the vote in the state tallied, Blackburn, a Republican congresswoman representing a largely rural district, had 62.1 percent, while Bredesen, a former governor, had 36.7 percent.

Bredesen and Blackburn were vying to replace retiring GOP Sen. Bob Corker and were close in recent polls. 

Blackburn, throughout her campaign, had relied heavily on tying herself closely to President Donald Trump, who visited the state three times this fall to campaign for her.

NBC News House estimate: Democrats have 65 percent chance of taking control

1376d ago / 2:08 AM UTC

The Democrats have a 65 percent chance of taking control of the House, according to an NBC News estimate.

NBC estimates the Democrats will win 224 seats, plus or minus 16 seats.

A party needs to control 218 seats in the House for a majority.

NBC News: Joe Manchin wins West Virginia Senate race

1376d ago / 2:08 AM UTC

Incumbent Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin has won re-election, beating his Republican challenger, State Attorney General Patrick Morrissey, NBC News projects.

Manchin has a strong personal brand in the state and had been running ads touting his independence and underscoring his support for gun rights and veterans. Still, West Virginia is one of the most pro-Trump states in the country.

Manchin voted for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, but only after it was apparent that he’d be confirmed.

NBC News Exit Poll: Voters divided on Mueller's handling of Russia investigation

1376d ago / 2:08 AM UTC

Voters are closely divided on the ongoing investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller into Russian interference in the 2016 election. According to NBC News Exit Poll results, 42 percent of voters nationwide approve Mueller's handling of the investigation, while 45 percent disapprove.

There's a partisan divide — about six in 10 Democrats approve of Mueller's handling of the probe, compared to just two in 10 Republicans. Independents are divided, with 43 percent approving and 42 percent disapproving. 

NBC News: Republican Andy Barr wins in Kentucky's 6th House District

1376d ago / 2:03 AM UTC

Republican Rep. Andy Barr has won re-election in Kentucky's 6th Congressional District, beating Democratic challenger Amy McGrath, according to NBC News. 

McGrath, a former Marine pilot who was the first woman to fly in an F-18 combat mission, was seeking to defeat the GOP incumbent in the highly competitive race in the Lexington-area district. That district picked Donald Trump by 16 points in 2016.

NBC News considers this race one of the bellwethers that will determine House control.

Analysis: Republican hold in Virginia's 5th district is a 'sigh of relief' for GOP

1376d ago / 2:01 AM UTC

NBC "Meet the Press" host Chuck Todd says that the Republican win in Virginia's 5th Congressional District is good news for the GOP, as a loss there would have meant a "tsunami." 

"That was our tsunami-watch race in Virginia. It's an open seat, a Republican district. Leslie Cockburn there is a longtime, progressive journalist," Todd said in reference to the Democratic candidate. 

"Had that flipped, you would be looking at something we've never seen before on the Democratic side. That is a sigh of relief for Republicans." When it comes to control of the House, "this could be a knife fight tonight," Todd said.

NBC News: GOP challenger Braun defeats Donnelly in Indiana Senate race

1376d ago / 1:57 AM UTC

GOP challenger Mike Braun has defeated incumbent Democratic Sen. Joe Donnelly in the Indiana Senate race, NBC News projects.

With 56 percent of the vote in the Hoosier State tallied, Braun was beating Donnelly 54.9 percent to 41.0 percent.

Polls in recent days had shown a dead heat between Donnelly and Braun, a former businessman and member of the Indiana State House.

Braun's win for the GOP gives the party a wider cushion as it seeks to maintain its control of the Senate.

NBC News Exit Poll: Most first-time midterm voters are Democrats or independents

1376d ago / 1:55 AM UTC

One out of every six voters nationwide casting ballots in 2018 said that they were voting in a midterm election for the first time, according to results from today’s NBC News Exit Poll. Among this group of voters new to midterm elections, Democrats and independents far outnumbered Republicans, who made up just a quarter of those who said they’d never voted in a midterm election before. 

This is in part because Democrats tend to be younger and thus more likely to be new voters, while independents tend to be less frequent voters and thus less likely to have voted previously in a midterm election.

Empire State Building is lit in red, white, and blue for #ElectionDay

1376d ago / 1:51 AM UTC

Journalists across the nation dive into election night spreads

1376d ago / 1:46 AM UTC

We'd like to give a special shoutout to Byron Tau of The Wall Street Journal, who is tracking what newsrooms across the U.S. are feeding their journalists.

It is an exhaustive list that is still being reported out, but the snapshot is of carbs, saturated fat and salt. 

Misinformation spreads about ICE and Black Panthers at polling locations

1376d ago / 1:46 AM UTC

It wouldn’t be Election Day without an allegation that members of the New Black Panther Party were intimidating voters at the polls.

This year’s allegations come by way of the Georgia governor's race, in a closely watched contest between Democrat Stacey Abrams and Republican Brian Kemp.

Posts on Twitter and Facebook — some with thousands of engagements — have alleged Abrams-supporting, armed Black Panthers have been walking through polling places in Georgia and threatening voters. There is no evidence for such a claim, but the misinformation stems from a report published in Breitbart over the weekend that went viral, attracting 95,000 engagements, according to social analytics tool BuzzSumo.

Kemp linked to Breitbart's article in a tweet from his official account on Sunday. That report took photos from the Georgia New Black Panther Party’s Facebook page that showed a few of the armed men posing with Stacey Abrams’ signs on the streets of Atlanta.

The fear-baiting is reminiscent of Election Day 2008 in which two members of the New Black Panther Party, one carrying a nightstick, were recorded standing outside a Philadelphia polling place. That video became the subject of over nearly 100 Fox News segments and two Department of Justice investigations.

Facebook has also squashed rumors on its platform that Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agents would be patrolling polling places, checking IDs and making arrests of undocumented immigrants attempting to vote.

ICE dispelled such rumors last month, tweeting that the agency “does not patrol or conduct enforcement operations at polling locations. Any flyers or advertisements claiming otherwise are false,” ICE wrote on Twitter.

ProPublica described the ICE rumors as another recurring piece of disinformation that “cropped up intermittently over the past two years."

A Facebook spokesman told NBC News that its War Room had been monitoring posts, with assistance from the Department of Homeland Security and state elections directors. As part of that effort, Facebook had taken down multiple posts that falsely claimed ICE was patrolling polling places. They also took down “several” posts aimed at voter suppression including ones that urged voters to head to polls on nonelection days.

 

NBC News: Democrat Pritzker wins Illinois governorship; Republican Hogan re-elected governor in Maryland

1376d ago / 1:43 AM UTC

Billionaire hotelier J.B. Pritzker has been elected governor of Illinois, NBC News projects, defeating Republican governor Bruce Rauner. 

In addition, Maryland voters re-elected Gov. Larry Hogan, a popular Republican, NBC News projects. He beat Ben Jealous, the former president and CEO of the NAACP who supported Sen. Bernie Sanders in his primary bid against Democrat Hillary Clinton in 2016.

Watch full election night results as they come in at NBC News

Menendez wins New Jersey Senate race, NBC News projects

1376d ago / 1:35 AM UTC

Incumbent Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez has won re-election, beating GOP challenger Bob Hugin, NBC News projects.

Menendez and Hugin, a Marine Corps veteran and the former chief of a biopharmaceutical behemoth who spent millions of his own money pummeling his opponent with negative ads, had been locked in a neck-and-neck race in recent days.

NBC News: Ohio gubernatorial race too close to call

1376d ago / 1:30 AM UTC

The governor's race in Ohio is too close to call, according to NBC News.

With 31 percent of the vote tallied, Democrat Richard Cordray was leading Republican Mike DeWine 50.9 percent to 46.7 percent.

Polls in Ohio closed at 7:30 p.m. ET. 

WATCH: Majority of voters favor stricter gun control ahead of midterm elections

1376d ago / 1:24 AM UTC

Trump closely watching results come in — especially Florida, Indiana, Missouri and Arizona races

1376d ago / 1:24 AM UTC

President Donald Trump is watching the early election returns roll in like the rest of us.

Which races are the president watching most closely? Not just Florida — where Democrat Andrew Gillum and Republican Ron DeSantis are running neck and neck in the gubernatorial race and where Democrat Bill Nelson and Republican Rick Scott are running neck and neck in the Senate race — but the Senate races in Indiana (which is of high interest to allies) and Missouri, along with Arizona, according to two sources familiar with his thinking.

At the residence, lots of GOP movers and shakers are gathering for the president’s election night reception. That includes Republican mega-donor Sheldon Adelson, among other high-profile donors. Other invitees include 2020-focused friends like Corey Lewandowski and David Bossie.

NBC News Exit Poll: Most voters support stricter gun control measures

1376d ago / 1:24 AM UTC

Most voters in today's midterm election — 60 percent — support stricter gun control policies, according to early results from the the NBC News Exit Poll. This includes 42 percent of gun owners in addition to 76 percent of those who do not own a gun. 

Gun policy trails other issues as the top concern for midterm voters, the poll found. Just one in 10 voters named it as the most important issue facing the country, according to early results. These voters, though, are proving to be a key voting bloc for Democrats in this year’s House contests. More than seven in 10 voters who put gun policy at the top of their issue list voted for the Democrat today in the House race in their district. Just 28 percent voted for the Republican.

NBC News: Florida governor's race too close to call

1376d ago / 1:22 AM UTC

The Florida gubernatorial race between Democratic candidate Andrew Gillum and Republican candidate Ron DeSantis is too close to call, according to NBC News.

Gillum, the mayor of Tallahassee, hopes to become the state's first black governor in his battle against DeSantis, a former congressman. DeSantis received strong support from President Trump, who held multiple rallies in the state over the course of the campaign.

Polls closed in Florida at 7:00 p.m. ET.

NBC News: Senate races in Tennessee, New Jersey too early to call

1376d ago / 1:14 AM UTC

The closely watched Senate races in Tennessee and New Jersey are too early to call, according to NBC News.

In New Jersey, the race between incumbent Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez and GOP challenger Bob Hugin is too early to call, but Menendez is leading, according to NBC News.

In Tennessee, the race between Democrat Phil Bredesen and Republican Marsha Blackburn — for the seat being vacated by retiring GOP Sen. Bob Corker — is too early to call, but Blackburn is leading, according to NBC News.

NBC News: Florida Senate race is too close to call

1376d ago / 1:11 AM UTC

The Florida Senate race between Democratic incumbent Bill Nelson and Republican Rick Scott, the outgoing governor, is too close to call, according to NBC News. 

Polls closed in Florida at 7:00 p.m. ET.

Nelson, who has served in the Senate since 2000, had cruised to re-election in 2006 and 2012, but this election year faced a challenge in the well-known governor. 

With 59 percent of the vote tallied, Nelson was leading Scott 51.3 percent to 48.7 percent.

NBC News Exit Poll: About half of voters say Trump’s approach to foreign policy is making U.S. less safe

1376d ago / 1:11 AM UTC

About half of voters say President Donald Trump's approach to foreign policy is making the U.S. less safe, according to early NBC News Exit Poll results. About four in 10 voters disagree, saying the president's foreign policy is making the country more safe, while 13 percent say Trump's foreign policy approach has made no difference in the country's safety. 

This issue tends to play to the GOP base, with 50 percent of white male voters saying Trump's foreign policy has made the country safer. Fifty-four percent of veteran voters agree. 

NBC News: Shalala beats Salazar in Florida's 27th House district

1376d ago / 1:09 AM UTC

Democrat Donna Shalala prevailed over Republican Maria Elvira Salazar to win Florida's 27th Congressional District, NBC News projects. 

Shalala replaces outgoing Republican Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen in a district that Hillary Clinton won handily in 2016 and includes wealthy areas like Coral Gables, Key Biscayne and Miami Beach, as well as the "Little Havana" neighborhood. Close to 60 percent of registered voters in the district are Latino, and the majority are Cuban-American.

NBC News Exit Poll: Democrats and Republicans divided on importance of electing more women

1376d ago / 12:56 AM UTC

Early results from the NBC News Exit Poll show a stark divide between the parties on the importance of electing more women to public office. Overall, when asked how important it is for more women to be elected, close to half (46 percent) of midterm voters so far say that it is very important and an additional third (32 percent) say it is somewhat important. Smaller shares say that electing more women is either not too (12 percent) or not at all (8 percent) important.

A large majority of Democrats say electing more women to office is very important, but just 18 percent of Republicans and 41 percent of independents agree. 

NBC News: Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown wins re-election in Ohio

1376d ago / 12:55 AM UTC

Sen. Sherrod Brown wins re-election in Ohio, NBC News projects. 

Analysis: Late visits by the president hurt Senate GOP candidates at the polls

1376d ago / 12:50 AM UTC

President Trump barnstormed his way across the country to help GOP Senate candidates mobilize the party's base, but "Meet the Press" host Chuck Todd says those appearances may have done more harm than good. 

“The pattern of where the president visited in the last two weeks and the downturn in the statewide number for that Republican candidate was pretty consistent across the country when I talk to Republican pollsters," Todd said during MSNBC's live election night coverage.

"Ted Cruz lost four points after the president visited. That’s why McSally and Heller didn’t want him to come in the last visit.” Watch the analysis:

Georgia voters file lawsuit seeking to block Kemp from overseeing election results

and

1376d ago / 12:42 AM UTC

A group of Georgia voters filed an eleventh-hour lawsuit Tuesday seeking to block Secretary of State Brian Kemp — who also happens to be the Republican candidate for governor — from taking part in any activities related to the election results.

The five Georgia residents want a judge to bar Kemp from having any involvement in the counting of votes, the certification of results or any runoff or recount procedures.

"Defendant's clear bias in favor of his own candidacy demonstrates the truth of the axiom that no man may be the judge in his own case," says the lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia. "This Court should not permit Defendant Kemp to resolve the outcome of the elections in which he is a candidate under those circumstances."

Read the full story here.

Wexton beats Comstock in Virginia's 10th Congressional District, NBC News projects

1376d ago / 12:40 AM UTC

Democrat Jennifer Wexton has defeated Barbara Comstock, the Republican incumbent, in the race for Virginia's 10th Congressional District, NBC News projects.

With 56 percent of the vote tallied, Wexton, a state senator, was beating Comstock 57.9 percent to 42.1 percent.

Comstock, whose district includes parts of the northern Virginia area outside Washington, had been seen as one of the most vulnerable members of Congress in this election.

NBC News Exit Poll: Partisan divide over whether government did enough to protect election from foreign interference

1376d ago / 12:39 AM UTC

Two years after attempts by Russia to undermine the 2016 U.S. presidential election, a slim majority of U.S. voters say not enough was done to defend the 2018 election from foreign meddling, according to early results from the NBC News Exit Poll.

As they left the polls so far today, about five in 10 voters said that the government did not do enough to protect this year’s election from foreign interference. Breaking down these numbers by Republicans and Democrats reveals a stark partisan divide. While about six in 10 Republicans say enough was done to protect the vote from foreign interference, only two in 10 Democrats think so.

NBC News Exit Poll: Two-thirds of voters favor keeping Roe v. Wade as is

1376d ago / 12:26 AM UTC

Two-thirds of voters in today's midterm election favor keeping Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 Supreme Court ruling on abortion, as it is, according to early results from the NBC News Exit Poll. About one-quarter of voters say the ruling should be overturned. 

Republicans are closely divided on this question, with 44 percent in favor of keeping Roe v. Wade as is and 45 percent saying it should be overturned. Substantial majorities of both Democrats and independents say Roe v. Wade should be left as is.

NBC News Exit Poll: Two-thirds of U.S. voters say Trump was a factor in their 2018 vote

1376d ago / 12:15 AM UTC

President Donald Trump has dominated the nation’s political landscape in his first two years in the White House, and early results from today’s NBC News Exit Poll suggest that he shaped today’s congressional elections. 

Two out of every three voters say Trump was a factor in their House vote, with 26 percent saying they cast their vote to express support for the president and 38 percent saying their vote was to oppose the president. The remainder — one-third of midterm voters — said Trump’s performance as president was not a factor in their House vote. 

NBC News: Georgia governor race too early to call

1376d ago / 12:15 AM UTC

The Georgia gubernatorial race between Democrat Stacey Abrams and Republican Brian Kemp is too early to call, according to NBC News.

Polls in Georgia closed at 7:00 p.m. ET. 

The race is one of the most closely watched of the 2018 midterm cycle. Abrams is attempting to become the first female African-American governor in U.S. history. Kemp has embraced President Donald Trump and highlighted his positions on gun rights and illegal immigration. 

If neither candidate tops 50 percent, they will face off, again, in a one-on-one runoff on Dec. 4.

Could Vermont make history by electing a transgender governor?

1376d ago / 12:14 AM UTC

Will Vermont be the first state to elect a transgender governor? Christine Hallquist, the Democratic nominee, hopes so. The state's polls closed at 7 p.m. ET, and the race is too early to call at this time, according to NBC News. 

Hallquist has been crisscrossing the Green Mountain State since she quit her job as CEO of Vermont Electric Cooperative to run for office in February. But she has an uphill battle, thanks to Republican incumbent Phil Scott's popularity. 

What is still unknown is how the state's voters will react to the historic nature of Hallquist's bid. The state is solidly progressive, but its elected officials show its quirky voting habits: the governor is a Republican, Sen. Bernie Sanders is an independent, and Sen. Patrick Leahy is a Democrat.

Read NBC Out's coverage of Hallquist and her bid here.

Voting stickers adorn Susan B. Anthony's grave

1376d ago / 12:07 AM UTC

Voters on Tuesday paid tribute to Susan B. Anthony, the legendary suffragette who helped lead the social movement that would eventually give women the right to vote, leaving stickers on the headstone at her grave in Rochester, New York.

Voters have previously flocked to her resting place in Mount Hope Cemetery, which in 2016 extended its hours on Election Day to allow visitors to pay their respects.

Anthony passed away in 1906. The 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which guaranteed a woman's right to vote, was not ratified until 1920.

NBC News Exit Poll in Georgia: Black voters worried that people will be prevented from voting

1376d ago / 12:05 AM UTC

As voters in Georgia faced long lines and, in some cases, issues with voting machines, early results from the NBC News Exit Poll found that about half of voters were concerned that people who should be able to vote would be prevented from doing so. Fifty-one percent of voters expressed that concern, while 41 percent of voters said they were more concerned that people who should not be able to vote would cast ballots. 

Among black voters in Georgia, 73 percent were concerned that people who should be able to vote would be prevented from doing so. Just over half of white voters, 54 percent, were more concerned that people who weren't qualified to vote would cast ballots. 

In the weeks leading up to Election Day, concerns were raised in Georgia about whether early votes were being counted correctly. There were also complaints about stringent voter identification requirements. 

Trump watching midterm results with friends and family, White House says

1376d ago / 12:02 AM UTC

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said that President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump are watching election results with "friends and family" at the White House residence tonight.

In a statement, she touted the president's rally schedule and leadership that fueled "an extraordinary ground game geared toward defying midterm history and protecting the GOP’s majorities."

"The president and first lady look forward to watching the results come in with friends and family in the White House residence," she added. 

Tim Kaine, Bernie Sanders cruise to re-election

1376d ago / 12:00 AM UTC

Sens. Tim Kaine, D-Va., and Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., have won re-election, NBC News projects.

Kaine defeated Republican Corey Stewart, NBC News projects. Sanders defeated Republican Lawrence Zupan.

Both Kaine and Sanders had been expected to easily win their races.

Tune in: Lester Holt anchors a special edition of NBC Nightly News

1376d ago / 11:39 PM UTC

Lester Holt anchors a special edition of NBC Nightly News from NBC News' Election headquarters. 

Brian Kemp had trouble voting using the voting system he oversees

1376d ago / 11:38 PM UTC

Republican gubernatorial candidate Brian Kemp, who is also secretary of state, is one of many Georgians who ran into issues at the polls on Tuesday. 

When Kemp, who oversees elections in the state, tried to vote but his voter card said "invalid" and he had to get another card, according to WSB-TV, an ABC-affiliated TV station in Atlanta. 

Voters in the state have reported long lines and other issues at the polls on Tuesday. 

Kemp's campaign told NBC News that this incident was a non-issue and that Kemp had a blank card. The campaign added it was fixed within seconds. 

NBC News Exit Poll: 1 in 4 Latino voters say they cast a midterm ballot for the first time in 2018

1376d ago / 11:35 PM UTC

One out of every four Latino voters today said that they had never voted in a midterm election before, according to early results from the NBC News Exit Poll. The share of first-time midterm voters was nearly one in five among African American voters and one in 10 among white voters. 

In addition, a majority of voters under 30 — a group whose participation in elections generally lags behind that of other age groups — said that they voted in a midterm election for the first time this year. 

WATCH: Health care replaces economy as most important issue for voters, early exit poll shows

1376d ago / 11:28 PM UTC

10 congressional races where Asian-Americans could make a difference

1376d ago / 11:25 PM UTC

While Asian-Americans make up 4.1 percent of voting-age citizens in the U.S., they are the fastest growing racial group in the country, according to the Pew Research Center.

Researchers expect the voting bloc to double by 2040, and Asian-American voters could end up swinging 27 congressional races this year, according to AAPI Data, a research program at the University of California, Riverside.

Read the full story here to see 10 congressional races where Asian-American candidates or voters could have a particular impact.

GOP chairwoman: Good economic news doesn't 'move the needle' like contrasts with Dems

1376d ago / 11:20 PM UTC

Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel told "MTP Daily" on Tuesday that good news about the economy doesn't motivate her party's voters like criticism of Democratic rule does. 

When asked whether President Trump's focus on a hardline immigration message in the final days before the election means that economic issues don't motivate her side as well, McDaniel said that the economic message alone hasn't proved as motivating for Republicans. 

"When you take just that to the voters," McDaniel said about good economic news, "it doesn’t move the needle as much. You have to contrast it with what would happen if Democrats would take control of the House.”

"I don't know why good news doesn't just bring voters out, you would think it would. But they need to see what's at stake." 

NBC News Exit Poll: There is a gender gap among voters over Justice Kavanaugh's confirmation

1376d ago / 11:16 PM UTC

Voters in today's midterm election are more likely to oppose the U.S. Senate’s decision to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court than they are to support it, according to early NBC News Exit Poll results. Forty-eight percent of voters said they oppose Kavanaugh's confirmation, while 43 percent support it. 

Kavanaugh's confirmation hearings became embroiled in multiple allegations of sexual misconduct against him, accusations he denied.

Women voters oppose Kavanaugh’s confirmation by a 16-point margin (53 percent to 37 percent) while men support his confirmation by a 6-point margin (50 percent to 44 percent), the NBC News Exit Poll found. 

Behind the scenes at MSNBC

1376d ago / 11:11 PM UTC

Jesse Rodriguez, director of booking for MSNBC, offers a behind-the-scenes look at the cable channel's operation as polls begin to close.

The first polls have closed

1376d ago / 11:05 PM UTC

The first round of polls have officially closed.

Polls in the eastern half of Kentucky and most of Indiana closed at 6:00 p.m. ET.

The next round of polls will close at 7:00 p.m. ET. That list includes the remaining parts of Kentucky and Indiana, Georgia, most of Florida, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Vermont and Virginia.

NBC News Exit Poll: 3 in 4 voters say Americans are becoming more politically divided

1376d ago / 11:03 PM UTC

Most voters feel that the nation's political rift is growing, an opinion that spans the partisan spectrum, according to early NBC News Exit Poll results.  More than three in four voters nationwide (77 percent) say that Americans are becoming more divided politically, while just 8 percent say Americans are becoming more united and 13 percent don’t see any change in the nation’s political atmosphere.

The sense that Americans are more divided is shared by majorities of Democrats (86 percent), Republicans (68 percent) and independents (77 percent).

Nearly half (45 percent) of those who feel Americans are becoming more politically divided told NBC News that they cast their House vote in part to express opposition to President Donald Trump. In contrast, 20 percent of voters who feel the country is becoming more divided said they cast a vote to show their support for Trump.

Voter voices: Immigration, health care and Trump motivate people to the polls

1376d ago / 11:02 PM UTC

Health care, immigration, and President Donald Trump brought voters to the polls on Tuesday, according to interviews with voters conducted by NBC News. 

“I've been looking forward to this day for two years,” says Ben Zylman, a 61-year-old from Kalamazoo, Michigan. "I do believe it's a referendum on Trump and the GOP in general, as they've fallen in lockstep with him."

Zylman, who considers himself an independent, had previously supported GOP Rep. Fred Upton but turned against him after Upton voted last year to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

"Because where I am at in my life, health care is the number one issue," said Zylman, who receives coverage through the ACA.

Read the full story here.

NBC News Exit Poll Desk: About half of voters think Trump immigration policies are too tough

1376d ago / 10:52 PM UTC

Midterm election voters today are divided on President Donald Trump's immigration policies. Roughly half of voters so far in the NBC News Exit Poll see Trump’s immigration policies as either about right (32 percent) or not tough enough (16 percent). The other half of voters (48 percent) say the policies are too tough.

A majority of Republican voters say Trump’s policies are either about right (61 percent) or not tough enough (28 percent). By contrast, about eight in 10 Democrats think the policies are too tough, and about half of independents say the same.

Women are more inclined than men to consider Trump’s immigration policies too tough, 55 percent to 41 percent.

More than $3 billion spent on traditional media ads for 2018 midterms

1376d ago / 10:47 PM UTC

Online rivals eyeing TV ad dollars may want to take note — when it comes to political campaign spending, local broadcast is still where the big money is.

Campaigns and other political organizations spent $3.2 billion on ads in traditional media in the midterm cycle, according to analysis by Advertising Analytics, a company that tracks political ad spending. Kyle Roberts, founder of Advertising Analytics, said he estimated that spending for the 2018 midterms had increased by around $1 billion compared to 2014.

"Traditional media is still very impactful," Roberts said. "There's a lot of talk about hyper-targeting on the internet, but broad reach medium still have significant weight in how candidates get branded and impact the electorate.”

Florida received the biggest influx of money with $473 million this election cycle, the company found. 

Houston voter says election official spoke to her using racist language

and

1376d ago / 10:45 PM UTC

A voter in Houston, Texas, said that an election official at her Harris County polling station used racist language when talking to her while she voted Tuesday morning.

The voter, Rolanda Anthony, told NBC News that Juanita Barnes, a county election official, told her, “Maybe if I put my blackface makeup on, you could comprehend what I’m saying to you,” after the computer prompted Anthony to verify her address at her Harris County, Texas, polling location.

“The moment I was told that, before I could even understand what was going on, Juanita came at me telling me, 'So you know it’s illegal to not provide your address?,'” Anthony said. "She just started yelling and being disrespectful.”

Anthony said the address on the screen matched the one on her driver's license, but was later told the computer prompt asking for address verification was an error.

Anthony added that she has filed charges through the Harris County Sheriff’s Office  and the matter has been forwarded to the Harris County District Attorney.

Barnes has been released from duty, according to the Harris County Clerk’s office. NBC News was unable to reach her for comment.

Prestina Ford Stuckey, an election clerk who witnessed the exchange, confirmed to NBC News she heard the blackface comment.

“I left because I was disgusted with what I heard,” Stuckey, who quit as a result of the incident, said.

The Harris County Sheriff's Office said in a tweet earlier Tuesday that a deputy "investigating a disturbance this morning" at a polling location issued a misdemeanor citation for assault to a female assistant election judge who allegedly bumped a female voter during an argument.

The tweet did not address what was allegedly said during the confrontation.

NBC News Exit Poll: Voters once again say nation is on the wrong track

1376d ago / 10:39 PM UTC

A majority of voters nationwide said that the United States is on the wrong track as they cast their votes today in the 2018 midterm elections, according to early results from the NBC News Exit Poll. By contrast, about four in 10 voters think that things are generally going in the right direction.

This is the seventh national election in a row in which a majority of voters said that the U.S. was on the wrong track. For the past 14 years, Americans’ sour mood about the nation’s direction has held whether the White House and Congress were controlled by Democrats or Republicans.

The last time a plurality of voters expressed optimism about the nation’s trajectory was President George W. Bush’s re-election in 2004, when the Exit Poll found “right direction” leading “wrong track” by 50 percent to 47 percent. 

Not surprisingly, the exit poll reveals a sharp red-blue divide on this question today, with four out of five Democrats saying that the nation is on the wrong track, while about three-quarters of Republicans believe that things are going in the right direction.

Beyoncé backs Beto O'Rourke for Texas Senate

1376d ago / 10:32 PM UTC

Superstar singer Beyoncé threw her support behind Democratic Rep. Beto O'Rourke in the competitive and closely watched Senate race against incumbent GOP Sen. Ted Cruz.

"I’m feeling grateful for everyone before me who fought so hard to give us all the right to have a voice," Beyoncé said in a post on Instagram Tuesday afternoon where she donned a "Beto for Senate" cap.

"Every vote counts. Every race matters. Everywhere," she added.