WASHINGTON — If it was a wave, it was one that broke too soon.
Democrats flipped the House of Representatives Tuesday evening in a monumental blow to Republicans, but fell short of elevating some of the party’s most prominent contenders.
Gubernatorial candidates Stacey Abrams of Georgia and Andrew Gillum of Florida both became national stories in the lead-up to the midterms, but ultimately failed to capture their states.
If they had won, Abrams would have been the first black female governor in U.S. history while Gillum would have been Florida’s first black governor.
In the end, Gillum narrowly lost to former Rep. Ron DeSantis while Abrams lost to Secretary of State Brian Kemp by about 53-46 percent, according to the Associated Press.
But Abrams refused to concede to Kemp when she addressed her supporters at about 1:40 a.m. EST on Wednesday.
Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas), a rising star within his party, was also within striking distance of a historic upset against GOP Sen. Ted Cruz. But in the end, Cruz secured a narrow victory.
Democrats’ long-shot hope of taking over the Senate was further beaten down after losses from several of the upper chamber’s incumbent Democrats, including Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) and Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.).
While the Democratic takeover of the House effectively throws a wrench into the White House’s agenda, President Donald Trump seized on Tuesday evening’s seemingly uneven results to claim victory.
“Tremendous success tonight,” Trump tweeted. “Thank you to all!”
Tremendous success tonight. Thank you to all!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 7, 2018