Senate, House still up for grabs 4 days after election

Elections 2022

FILE – Election worker Donna Young inspects a mail-in ballot for damage at the Sacramento County Registrar of Voters in Sacramento, Calif., June 3, 2022. Unlike in many other countries, elections in the U.S. are highly decentralized, complex and feature a long list of races on the ballot, from president or Congress all the way down to local ballot measures or town council seats. Rules also vary greatly by state. Some give local election offices several weeks before Election Day to process mailed ballots, which includes steps that may include checking signatures or ID information. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File)

(NewsNation) — The midterms have still not yielded a clear result of which party will control Congress, but four days after the election things are starting to come into focus.

The Democrats are one Senate victory away from keeping that chamber, while the Republicans are eight seats away from gaining control of the House, Decision Desk HQ projects. Here’s where things stand.

Senate

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Late Friday, Decision Desk HQ projected Sen. Mark Kelly (D-Ariz.) would keep his seat. This brought the Democrats even with Republicans in projected seats for the next Senate at 49.

However, Democrats are closer to control than Republicans. Because of Vice President Kamala Harris’ tie-breaking vote, they just need to reach 50 seats to own the chamber. Republicans would need to get 51.

The only unresolved race is in Nevada, where Republican Adam Laxalt maintains a slim lead over Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto. Thousands of ballots are still being counted in the state’s most populous county, Clark, which will be crucial in determining whether Laxalt’s lead is safe. Whichever party’s candidate wins this race will get them to 50 seats.

There’s still the matter of the Georgia runoff between Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock and Republican Herschel Walker. If Cortez Masto wins, Democrats would maintain their control of the Senate given Vice President Kamala Harris’ tiebreaking vote. 

However, if Laxalt wins in Nevada, the Georgia runoff will determine which party takes the chamber.

House

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As of late Friday night there are 27 House races without a projected winner. Democrats and Republicans need 218 seats to control the House, and Republicans appear to have the inside track to get there, though the chamber is still too close to call.

Central to understanding which party will win out is California. The state sends 52 representatives, and around a dozen of them remain too close to call.

California’s results can be slow, which doesn’t always show up in statewide races because it’s reliably Democratic as a whole. However, mail-in ballots postmarked by Nov. 8 can be accepted up to Nov. 15. Sacramento County, California’s public information officer says less than 3% of the county’s registered voters showed up in person.

There are also tight races in New York, Maine and Colorado, among other states, that are preventing Decision Desk HQ from making a projection just yet.

If Republicans can pick up eight of the remaining 27 seats, they will take the House.

When will we know who won?

It could be any day now, though it’s unclear when the vote count will be completed. Decision Desk HQ weighs multiple factors in their race calls, including knowing how much of the vote is left to count. In states like Nevada and California that allow for mail-in ballots to come in a week later, that makes it hard to be certain.

We expect more vote results to come out Saturday and Sunday. Stay tuned to NewsNation online as well as on social media for results as soon as they come in.

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