Republicans swept into control of the U.S. Senate on Tuesday, but that only begins to tell the story of a mid-term election that turned into an electoral rout.
From Nevada to New Hampshire, Republicans won resounding victories in state-level elections that swept more GOP lawmakers into state capitols and flipped control of at least eight legislative chambers. Combined with unexpected victories in gubernatorial races in Illinois, Maryland and Massachusetts, the Republicans are poised to control a higher percentage of state governments than at any point in the past 25 years.
With a few dozen state legislative races still undecided on Wednesday afternoon, Republicans have scored a net gain of more than 250 seats across the nation’s 99 legislative chambers, according to an analysis by Ballotpedia, which tracks state-level elections.
“Across the board, what we’re seeing is that chambers flipped from Democratic control to Republican control,” said Geoff Pallay, director of strategic projects for the Lucy Burns Institute, the Wisconsin-based think tank that runs Ballotpedia. “There were some that we expected to see and others that were real surprises.”
Republicans took the majority in nine of those chambers – winning the Colorado Senate, Maine Senate, the Minnesota House, Nevada House and Senate, the New Hampshire House, the New Mexico House, the New York Senate, and the West Virginia House. The GOP is set to control at least 64 legislative chambers.