Ballot Box

Five-term Dem loses in Indiana

Rep. Baron Hill (D-Ind.) lost his reelection bid Tuesday. Hill's race was closely watched because his defeat could be the first sign of a Republican wave election.


GOP picks up Ellsworth seat

The seat vacated by Rep. Brad Ellsworth (D-Ind.) in favor of a bid for Senate has gone to the GOP. 

As expected, Republican Larry Bucshon defeated Democrat Trent Van Haaften handily in the conservative leaning district. 

Ellsworth has lost his Senate bid to Republican Dan Coats.    


Blanche Lincoln falls in Arkansas Senate race

Democrat Blanche Lincoln has lost her reelection bid to represent the Razorback State, bowing to a long-expected defeat at the hands of Republican John Boozman.

Boozman was ahead by nearly 20 points in most polls heading into Tuesday’s finish, with Arkansas voters angered at Lincoln, an 18-year incumbent who was seeking a fourth term. Lincoln’s fairly centrist voting record had angered both liberals and conservatives — she narrowly beat back a primary challenge this spring from Lt. Gov. Bill Halter — and her support for the healthcare reform bill is generally seen as the decision that did her in.


Democrat declared winner in West Virginia Senate race

Gov. Joe Manchin (D) is headed to the Senate to replace the late Sen. Robert Byrd (D), beating back a surge by Republican John Raese.

When he started the race, Manchin was the odds-on favorite, yet saw his lead evaporate due to coal-country voters upset with the Obama administration. Manchin responded with a right turn — at one point condemning the healthcare reform bill that was perhaps Senate Democrats’ biggest victory — and running a television advertisement that showed him shooting the cap-and-trade bill with a gun.

Manchin's victory makes it pretty tough for Republicans to win the Senate.


GOP picks up two Virginia House seats

In one of the first suprises of the night, Republicans picked up Rep. Rick Boucher's (D-Va.) seat. Republican Morgan Griffiths, the Virginia House majority leader, managed to unseat Boucher, who has held his office since 1983, by focusing his campaign on the Democrat’s vote for the cap-and-trade energy bill. The 9th District is home to a heavy coal industry, which Griffiths contended would stand to lose money under the legislation.

And Republican Robert Hurt won election to Virginia’s 5th District unseating Rep. Tom Perriello (D-Va.) in one of the country’s most highly contested races. President Obama tried to boost Perriello’s standing last Friday with a rally in his hometown of Charlottesville — a move seen by some as risky due to Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) gaining the support of the district in 2008’s presidential election.

-- This post was updated at 8:48 p.m.


Florida Dem who switched healthcare vote loses

Rep. Suzanne Kosmas (D-Fla.), who cast an early vote against healthcare before switching to vote in favor of the final version of the bill, lost her reelection bid Tuesday by a sizable margin.  

Republican Sandy Adams was pulling in more than 60 percent of the vote against Kosmas when the race was called.   

Several embattled Democrats fall into the same category as Kosmas on Tuesday, including longtime Rep. Allen Boyd (D-Fla.), Rep. John Boccieri (D-Ohio) and Rep. Betsy Markey (D-Colo.). 

All three also cast votes against the initial version of the healthcare bill before voting in favor of the final measure after heavy lobbying from the Democratic leadership in the House.  


First Dem pickup in House

Democrat John Carney won election to Delaware's lone House seat Tuesday, an expected pick-up for the party.

That seat was held by the retiring Rep. Mike Castle (R-Del.) who lost to Christine O'Donnell in the state's Senate GOP primary earlier this year.