Here’s where things stand on Wednesday. For the news as it happened on Election Day, read here.
The red wave that pollsters and analysts projected in the 2022 midterms had not yet come to shore by the time observers went to sleep on Tuesday night, with several of the most-watched midterm elections remaining too close to call.
As day started to break on the East Coast, neither side could decisively claim control of Congress. House seats in New York and California didn’t yet have a winner, nor did Senate seats in Georgia, Arizona, Wisconsin and Nevada.
In the Georgia Senate race between Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock and former professional football player Herschel Walker, neither candidate had yet reached the 50% threshold to avoid a runoff. That contest would take place next month.
In other marquee races, Democratic Lt. Gov. John Fetterman beat Republican television personality Dr. Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania’s Senate nail-biter. Republican J.D. Vance claimed victory over Democratic Rep. Tim Ryan in Ohio. And in Florida, Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis cruised to victory over Charlie Crist, while Republican Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida bested Democratic Rep. Val Demings.
One thing about the House is certain: It will have its first Gen Z member, as 25-year-old Maxwell Frost won election in Florida, taking Demings’ seat.
And voters in several states weighed in on abortion, voting rights and marijuana.
Election officials in multiple states expected vote counting and certification to continue throughout the week. USA TODAY and the USA TODAY Network is on the ground, monitoring what’s happening across the country the day after the polls closed.
Here’s what else to know about Election Day 2022:
Oregon governor’s race is too close to call, with Tina Kotek ahead
SALEM, Ore. – Democrat Tina Kotek held a razor thin lead over Republican Christine Drazan in the Oregon governor’s race all night Tuesday, but the race remained too close to call.
In a short speech at 11 p.m. Kotek thanked her supporters, saying that it was too early to call the race.
Drazan took the stage to thank supporters about a half hour later, and expressed confidence that Republicans would hold the seat when all the votes are counted.
Betsy Johnson, who ran as an independent, conceded early in the evening.
– Tracy Loew, Salem Statesman Journal
Lindsey Graham: It’s not Trump, it’s Biden
Sen. Lindsey Graham says it’s too soon to tell where all the chips will fall, but he knows one thing for certain.
“(It’s) definitely not a Republican wave – that’s for darn sure,” the South Carolina Republican said on NBC News late Tuesday.
He suggested he didn’t want to engage in a premature post-mortem of what Republicans should have done differently. But Graham, a close ally of former President Donald Trump, said he didn’t believe Trump’s campaigning with Republicans damaged their chances.
“Not really,” he said. “I think it was a referendum on Biden.”
– Donovan Slack
Democratic House campaign chief trailing in New York
While Democrats have managed to run better so far than many dire predictions would have it, the head of their campaign arm in the House is facing uncertain re-election chances this morning.
Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney is trailing Republican challenger Michael Lawler 49.4% to 50.6%. That was with roughly 95% of the votes counted in their New York district. The race is still too close to call.
Maloney, a former senior adviser to former President Bill Clinton, was first elected to Congress in 2012 and leads the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. That group – and others trying to elect Democrats – took some heat for spending money during primary races to boost hard-right Trump-backed Republican candidates, ostensibly helping to boost weaker opponents for Democrats.
“My job is to win elections for the Democrats,” Maloney said on “Meet the Press” in August. “I understand that there are difficult moral questions, philosophical questions about tactics. That’s always true in politics.”
– Donovan Slack
In Arizona Senate race, Kelly had the lead
Arizona’s Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Kelly was maintaining a lead early Wednesday over Republican Blake Masters, with a sizable edge among early votes cast in Maricopa and Pima counties.
Unofficial ballot returns earlier Tuesday reflected those cast during the state’s early voting period and were Democratic-leaning as many expected. Republicans are expected to dominate ballots counted later, suggesting Kelly’s hold on the race is tenuous.
Kelly now faces the challenge of trying to hold onto that advantage as counting shifts to Election Day votes and those dropped off in recent days. That process is expected to continue for days.
– Arizona Republic
Election Day roundup:Texas GOP Gov. Abbott, Colorado Sen. Bennet reelected. Here’s what you might have missed in the midterms
Firebrand Rep. Lauren Boebert facing unexpectedly tight race
Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., had a 97% chance of winning reelection against Democrat Adam Frisch, analysts at FiveThirtyEight predicted before the polls opened Tuesday. A day later, that prediction may be a little in doubt.
Boebert, known for a gun-themed restaurant – Shooters – she once owned and incendiary remarks about Muslims, among others, was trailing Frisch with 49.1% compared to his 50.9%. That tally was with 92.53% outstanding.
Frisch, a former city council member, ran on the economy and his campaign says he knows “creating good-paying jobs and fighting inflation must be the top priorities for our representative, not sideshow theatrics.”
– Donovan Slack
Georgia keeping us waiting…again
With neither candidate in the U.S. Senate race in Georgia getting more than 50% of the vote so far, the contest could be headed to a runoff in December. Democrat Sen. Raphael Warnock had 49.4%, while Republican challenger Herschel Walker had 48.5% with an estimated 2% of votes still outstanding early Wednesday morning.
If it goes to a runoff, that will be held four weeks after this week’s election, meaning it would fall on Dec. 6. Early voting for a runoff would start next week, on Nov. 14. USA TODAY’s Anna Kaufman breaks down more of the ins and outs here, including explaining what a runoff election is and who’s eligible.
Georgia kept the nation in suspense in 2020, too, when both Senate races there went to runoffs and were decided in January 2021, tipping Senate control to Democrats.
– Donovan Slack
Where does Congress stand?
As of 7 a.m., neither party can claim control of a chamber of Congress.
In the Senate, there are five seats oustanding: Arizona, Georgia, Wisconsin and Nevada are too close to call. Alaska’s ranked-choice voting system means results may not be final for up to two more weeks. A party needs 51 seats to have the majority. Right now, the Senate is evenly split, with Vice President Kamala Harris breaking ties.
In the House, Republicans needed to gain five seats to acquire the majority. Right now, there are 64 seats without a decision.
– Katie Wadington
Kathy Hochul becomes NY’s first elected female governor
Gov. Kathy Hochul held off a Republican challenger backed by party heavyweights eager to turn Andrew Cuomo’s downfall into victory in a reliably blue state, rallying downstate voters to become the first woman elected governor of New York. The Buffalo-born Hochul, 64, also becomes the first upstate governor in a century, dating back to Nathan Miller, who took office in 1921.
With nearly 93% of the vote counted, Hochul was leading Rep. Lee Zeldin, a Trump supporter and military veteran from Long Island who played on voter fears of random violence to cast Hochul as a soft-on-crime Democrat. Hochul garnered 52.7% of the vote.
In Arizona gubernatorial race, Hobbs leading Lake
Democratic gubernatorial hopeful Katie Hobbs was ahead of Republican Kari Lake in early election results released Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning.
The race between Lake, a former TV news anchor, and Hobbs, the outgoing secretary of state and former lawmaker, had been labeled a toss-up by some polls and analysts.
With 62.39% of the vote counted, Hobbs has 50.9% of the vote to Lake’s 49.1%.
– Arizona Republic
Johnson has narrow edge in Wisconsin Senate race
Republican U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson and Democratic challenger Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes were locked in a race that was too close to call early Wednesday.
With 93% of the vote in, Johnson had 50.7% of the vote to 49.3% for Barnes, a difference of nearly 40,000 votes.
“We’ve looked very closely at the numbers,” Johnson told supporters in Neenah. “We feel confident there’s no way they can make up the gap.” He added that he expected to declare victory later in the morning.
Barnes campaign spokeswoman Maddy McDaniel said in a statement: “We always knew this race would be incredibly close. No matter what anyone says, we are committed to making sure every vote is counted. We will wait and see what the Wisconsin voters have decided after all their voices are heard.”
– Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
State-by-state election results
Alabama | Alaska | Arizona | Arkansas | California | Colorado | Connecticut | Delaware | Florida | Georgia | Hawaii | Idaho | Illinois | Indiana | Iowa | Kansas | Kentucky | Louisiana | Maine | Maryland | Massachusetts | Michigan | Minnesota | Mississippi | Missouri | Montana | Nebraska | Nevada | New Hampshire | New Jersey | New Mexico | New York | North Carolina | North Dakota | Ohio | Oklahoma | Oregon | Pennsylvania | Rhode Island | South Carolina | South Dakota | Tennessee | Texas | Utah | Vermont | Virginia | Washington | West Virginia | Wisconsin | Wyoming
Pelosi: Democrats are ‘strongly outperforming expectations’
As the sun got ready to rise above the East Coast, results from the 2022 midterm elections began to disprove an anticipated “red wave” of Republican seats.
“While many races remain too close to call, it is clear that House Democratic Members and candidates are strongly outperforming expectations across the country,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a statement issued early Wednesday.
“As states continue to tabulate the final results, every vote must be counted as cast.”
Just before 6 a.m. ET, dozens of House races remained uncalled, leaving control of the chamber uncertain.
– Kathleen Wong
Winning candidates break new ground on Election Day
This year’s midterm elections made history, as Americans elected the country’s first lesbian governor, its first Gen Z House member and other ground-breaking officials.
In Maryland, Wes Moore was elected the state’s first Black governor, and nationally he is the third elected Black governor.
In an election cycle with record numbers of LGBTQ candidates, the country’s first lesbian governor was elected in Massachusetts, Maura Healy, while the New Hampshire voters elected the first transgender man to a state legislature.
The results so far have also seen new representation of women and younger generations, from the first female governor of Arkansas, Sarah Sanders Huckabee, to the first Gen-Z elected member of Congress, 25-year-old Maxwell Frost. Read more here.
– Savannah Kuchar
Georgia secretary of state: Brad Raffensperger wins
Republican incumbent Brad Raffensperger emerged victorious in the race for Georgia secretary of state, beating out Democratic nominee and former state Sen. Bee Nguyen.
Raffensperger held a solid lead over Nguyen in the polls throughout the race. The contest to be the state’s chief election officer, a down-ballot race that has previously garnered little attention, has gained increased importance in the wake of the 2020 election and unfounded voter fraud claims.
– Anna Kaufman
Democratic Rep. Elissa Slotkin wins in Michigan
Rep. Elissa Slotkin, D-Mich, won reelection over Republican state Sen. Tom Barrett and Libertarian candidate Leah Dailey in Michigan’s new 7th Congressional District, ending one of the nation’s most expensive and closely watched House races.
Slotkin was first elected from the 8th District in 2018, when she flipped a Republican seat that President Donald Trump won in 2016, and she was one of the few Democrats to win reelection in a district that voted for Trump in 2020. A former National Security Council and CIA staffer, she opted to run this year in the newly redrawn 7th District, which is centered on Lansing and would have voted narrowly for President Joe Biden had it existed in 2020.
While Slotkin was endorsed by Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., a harsh Trump critic, Barrett was endorsed by former Vice President Mike Pence.
– Yoori Han, Cronkite News
Wisconsin governor: Tony Evers wins reelection
Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers won a heated reelection battle against Donald Trump-backed Republican Tim Michels.
A Marquette University Law School poll last week had them tied at 48% just before Election Day.
Evers won the governor’s office by a thin margin in 2018, when he defeated Republican Scott Walker, a 2016 presidential candidate. As governor, Evers’ job approval has been slightly underwater in recent Marquette polls, with 46% approving of the job he’s been doing as governor and 48% disapproving.
– Donovan Slack