Another new Democrat is going to Congress. Although voting in the midterm elections concluded over a week ago at this point, Democrats are still racking up victories. Wednesday afternoon, the Associated Press called the race to represent New Jersey’s 3rd Congressional District for the Democratic challenger Andy Kim. The former national security aide to Barack Obama beat Republican incumbent Tom MacArthur by a margin of about one percent, or a little over 3,000 votes.
— POLITICO (@politico) November 14, 2018
Kim is among the first Korean Americans elected to Congress in some 20 years, adding to the stature of his victory. It’s alongside other significant triumphs, like the election this past week of the first two Muslim women to Congress, ever.
The call caps off a week of major victories for Democrats in the House. For the first time in eight years, they will be the majority party — with all of the concurrent powers, including that of the subpoena. Overall, dozens of Republican seats flipped to Democrats; Kim’s is the fourth flip just in New Jersey. There will now be only one Republican in the next Congressional delegation from the state, Chris Smith in the state’s 4th Congressional District.
Kim’s victory sits among 34 others in the House and counting, putting the party well above the threshold of a couple dozen pickups they needed to take control. His lead wasn’t even present on election night, according to CNN, making him among a number of Democrats who not only have flipped Congressional seats but who have done so in the days following Tuesday, when voting in the midterms concluded.
Among the most prominent in that category is probably Kyrsten Sinema, the Arizona Senate candidate who took a very late lead over Republican challenger Martha McSally in the race to replace the retiring Republican Jeff Flake. Arizona hasn’t elected a Democrat to the U.S. Senate for decades.
Sinema and Kim aren’t alone. In California, Democratic House candidates Katie Porter and Josh Harder have both taken the lead over incumbent Republicans in the days since election night. Harder’s race has been called in his favor as of Wednesday afternoon, but Porter’s hasn’t.
Another similar example would be that of New Mexico Democrat Xochitl Torres Small, who took the lead over Republican incumbent Yvette Herrell days after election night concluded and is — seemingly — on her way to Congress.
The victories offset at least a couple of setbacks, like Democratic Senate hopeful Beto O’Rourke’s loss to incumbent Texas Republican Ted Cruz and Democratic candidate for Florida governor Andrew Gillum’s fate. He remains down in unofficial counts behind Republican Ron DeSantis.
Still, Kim will be joining a sizable Democratic contingent in the U.S. House next January. President Donald Trump has already threatened the incoming Democrats, saying that he and the GOP will launch party politics-driven investigations into them if they dare to look into the Trump team’s activities.
That, though, doesn’t exactly seem poised to make plenty of Democrats rethink their positions. The Russia investigation will likely get back underway in the House, as will a whole host of other efforts, like fighting climate change, reigning in the Trump administration’s ethics violations, and beyond. The agenda remains packed.
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