Trump supporters celebrate and party amid election returns
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It was a tale of two political worlds on election night at Trump International Hotel D.C. — as TV pundits wondered aloud about a blue wave, the crowd gathered at President TrumpDonald John TrumpJoint Chiefs chairman denies report that US is planning to keep 1K troops in Syria Kansas Department of Transportation calls Trump 'delusional communist' on Twitter Trump has privately voiced skepticism about driverless cars: report MORE’s namesake destination in the nation’s capital was awash in red.

A line formed early in the night outside, with a security detail informing would-be patrons that the establishment was already at capacity before most returns started rolling in from the midterm elections.

Inside, a gathering of hundreds reveled and roared on a night that was privately dreaded among many Republicans, who were bracing for potential losses in House and Senate races across the country.

“I’ve never seen it so packed,” remarked one guest as he made it through the hotel’s lobby to the bar. A hostess at the hotel’s steakhouse, BLT Prime, was heard apologizing on the phone that the culinary hotspot was “completely booked” with reservations on Tuesday.

While Trump has frequently attacked CNN — dubbing it “fake news” — the network had a prime spot in the commander in chief’s eponymous digs, with four large TV screens showing the network along with Fox News (although only Fox’s audio blasted throughout the midterms festivities.)

Rep. Darrell IssaDarrell Edward IssaThe Hill's Morning Report — Shutdown fallout — economic distress Former congressmen, RNC members appointed to Trump administration roles Senate throws hundreds of Trump nominees into limbo MORE (R-Calif.) looked relaxed as he had a taste of white wine from the bartender early in the night, before being poured a full glass. Former Fox News host Eric Bolling smiled with selfies for fans throughout the evening.

Guests wined and dined — and dug deep into their wallets — as races were called, with house-popped parmesan truffle popcorn being offered for $15, and a dozen prime cheeseburger sliders setting hungry political junkies back $55.

The crowd served as a sort of vocal barometer for GOP victories and defeats — cheering wildly whenever a Republican was projected to win and jeering at what was considered bad news.

The group booed in unison when TVs announced it was looking to be a tight race between Florida gubernatorial candidates Andrew Gillum (D) and Ron DeSantisRonald Dion DeSantisRepublicans up for reelection fear daylight with Trump Florida bill repealing ban on smokable medical marijuana headed to governor's desk GOP turns Venezuela into Florida attack line MORE (R) — with DeSantis ultimately eking out a win. There were loud whoops heard as Fox projected that Rep. Marsha BlackburnMarsha BlackburnTaylor Swift says she wants to get more involved in politics Bipartisan lawmakers introduce resolution supporting vaccines Hillicon Valley: Cohen stuns Washington with testimony | Claims Trump knew Stone spoke to WikiLeaks | Stone, WikiLeaks deny | TikTok gets record fine | Senators take on tech over privacy MORE (R) was expected to defeat her opponent, former Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen (D) in the state’s Senate race.

Although the crowd's reaction appeared more muted when an announcement was made that Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzO'Rourke faces pressure from left on 'Medicare for all' O'Rourke not planning, but not ruling out big fundraisers O'Rourke: Being a white male not a disadvantage in 2020 Dem field MORE (R) pulled out a win in his high-profile reelection bid against Rep. Beto O'RourkeRobert (Beto) Francis O'RourkeO'Rourke faces pressure from left on 'Medicare for all' O'Rourke says voters aren't interested in 'personal attacks' like GOP tweet O'Rourke says he won't use 'f-word' on campaign trail MORE (D). Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyThe 25 Republicans who defied Trump on emergency declaration Overnight Defense: Senate rejects border emergency in rebuke to Trump | Acting Pentagon chief grilled on wall funding | Warren confronts chief over war fund budget 12 Republican senators defy Trump on emergency declaration  MORE's (R) win over Jenny Wilson (D) in the Utah Senate race elicited a similar low-key response from the largely pro-Trump partygoers. 

A steady slew of journalists were also among the throng, scoping out the election night scene.

Pro-Trump sartorial fashions were on full display as the midterms coverage blared. One woman picked at her food at BLT while sporting a “Proud to be a Deplorable” shirt, another patron donned a t-shirt that read, “Hollywood Sucks.”

Another woman slipped on a bright red jacket over her white dress as she prepared to pose for a photo with a male companion. “I hope this jacket doesn’t make my dress look funny,” she said. “I’ll look like Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonGOP lawmaker defends Chelsea Clinton after confrontation over New Zealand attacks Klobuchar: Race, gender should not be litmus tests for 2020 Dem nominee Kirsten Gillibrand officially announces White House run MORE.”