Graham says he 'totally' will investigate the FBI's handling of Russia and Clinton probes
- Graham has been a longtime critic of the FBI's handling of those investigations -- and has called for a second special counsel to investigate what happened.
- Graham's comments are the latest sign that the Senate GOP will be a counterbalance of sorts to House Democrats, who plan to end the House Republican probe into the FBI and launch a flurry of new investigations in their new majority next year.
- Graham also said Tuesday that he would support Senate passage of a bill to protect special counsels like Robert Mueller from political pressure, even though he said, "I don't see any threat to Mueller." Democrats have demanded quick passage of that bill after President Donald Trump fired Jeff Sessions as attorney general last week and named Mueller critic Matt Whitaker to the post as acting AG.
- But Graham, who spoke with Whitaker last week, said he's convinced that the new acting attorney general won't interfere with the Mueller probe.
McSally emerges as potential replacement for Kyl in Senate
- A day after the Arizona Republican conceded her Senate campaign to Democratic Rep. Kyrsten Sinema, the state's other senator, Jon Kyl, told CNN on Tuesday he has decided whether to leave office before his term ends at the end of next year.
- But in the wake of Sinema's victory in the race for Arizona's other Senate seat, some Republicans in the state buzzed about the possibility of McSally replacing Kyl. There are, several Arizona Republicans pointed out, significant downsides to appointing McSally, too: She's the only Republican to lose a Senate race in Arizona in 30 years.
- Others on the list include Karrin Taylor Robson, an Arizona Board of Regents member and real estate developer, who is well-liked by the GOP donor community; Kirk Adams, a former Arizona House speaker who is Ducey's chief of staff but widely expected to leave his office soon; and Eileen Klein, a chief of staff for former Gov. Jan Brewer who Ducey appointed state treasurer in April.
Who is Mira Ricardel and why did Melania Trump want her fired?
- In those few months on the job, Ricardel generated a long list of enemies and developed a reputation for shouting at subordinates, plotting against White House officials she disliked and leaking stories about her administration opponents to the press.
- The former State Department and Pentagon official made enemies of heavyweights within the Trump administration, feuding with chief of staff John Kelly, his deputy Zach Fuentes, and locked horns with Defense Secretary James Mattis, according to people familiar with the White House intrigue.
- But Ricardel seems to have crossed a line in taking on Melania Trump's office over the first lady's trip to Africa in October, making what some viewed as challenging requests and being obstinate, the White House official told CNN.
2 photos show the stark difference in the new representatives Democrats and Republicans are sending to Congress
- They also include four openly LGBTQ+ members: Katie Hill of California; Sharice Davids of Kansas; Angie Craig of Minnesota; and Chris Pappas of New Hampshire.
- While a record number of women— 114 to be exact — have been elected to serve in the 116th Congress so far, most of the gains in female representation have been in the Democratic Party, which gained a net 32 seats in the House and unseated several Republican women in the process.
- A record number of women of color, 40 of them, who are mostly Democrats, will also serve in the upcoming term.
- This year, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan made history as the first Muslim women elected to Congress, while Sharice Davids of Kansas and Deb Haaland of New Mexico will be the first Native-American women.
Mark Meadows doesn't 'anticipate' running for another term as chairman of powerful conservative Freedom Caucus
- WASHINGTON — Mark Meadows, the chairman of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, seemed unsure of whether or not he would run again for another term to head the group when the new Congress convenes in January.
- The HFC, which proved to be a powerful faction of the House's most conservative members in recent years, does not have term limits for chairman, according to an aide.
- Meadows succeeded Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan two years ago, who was the chairman since their founding in 2015.
- While the HFC has considerable influence and close relationships with President Donald Trump, they will have lost much of the upper hand they held during the past two years.
- Still, there is optimism for the group, as they were able to make several gains with potential recruits during the midterm elections despite Republican losses across the board.
California Rep. Mimi Walters' campaign accuses Democrats of planning to 'steal' her seat as her lead shrinks in tough reelection bid
- Walters, a second-term Republican congresswoman, holds a razor-thin lead over Democratic challenger, law professor Katie Porter, in the race for the 45th District, located in Orange County in Southern California.
- In California's 39th Congressional District, the other Southern California race that remains to be called, Republican Young Kim claimed her Democratic opponent Gil Cisneros had been reprimanded by the Los Angeles County Registrar for physically tampering with ballots and "harassing" vote counters.
- The Registrar's office declined to comment on the Cisneros camp's claims that multiple observers from the Kim campaign had been asked to leave for attempted vote tampering.
- Republicans in Florida, which is in the throes of its own recounts in the hotly-contested gubernatorial and Senate races, have also accused Democrats and local election officials of election fraud and vote tampering, allegations echoed by President Donald Trump.
14 key political trends from the 2018 exit polls
- In the national House exit poll, Republicans got crushed among young people -- taking just 32% as compared to 67% for Democrats among those aged 18 to 29.
- One of President Donald Trump's saving graces in the 2016 election was white women, who made up 37% of the electorate and voted for him over Hillary Clinton by 9 points.
- In Tuesday's election, white women again made up 37% of the electorate, but this time they split their votes: 49% for Democrats, 49% for Republicans.
- Pelosi, who has repeatedly expressed skepticism about the idea of impeachment, will have to deal with her party's base (and a not-insubstantial number of her House Democratic colleagues), which believes that trying to impeach Trump is beyond debate.
- It was an election about health care, yes, and also about how people -- and women in particular -- viewed the basic idea of Trump as President.
Georgia politician and protesters are arrested in the state capitol as tension over tight governors race comes to a head
- Several people were arrested during protests inside Georgia's state capitol on Tuesday, the last day of ballot counting in Georgia's tight and contentious gubernatorial race.
- State Senator Nikema Williams was arrested after she refused to leave the floor of the capital, despite the fact that she said she was not actively protesting.
- Ballots continue to be counted in the state, and a runoff would be triggered if neither candidate earns 50% of the vote in the final count.
- While Kemp has called Abrams' refusal to concede "a disgrace to democracy," thousands of provisional ballots have been counted since election day — including at polling sites that initially said they had completed their counts.
- Despite the ongoing count — which will end on Tuesday, both Kemp and Trump have declared Republican victory in the race.
A week later it's clear the midterms did produce a blue wave – here are the three main factors that drove the Democrats' triumph
- But they've been offset in recent midterm elections by low rates of voting among specific Democratic constituencies, most notably young voters and Latinos.
- It found the share of white voters dropped by 3 percentage points, from 79 percent to 76 percent, while the share of blacks, Latinos and Asian-Americans rose by 1 point apiece.
- Non-college-educated white men, the most Republican demographic group, dropped to 22 percent of the electorate from 25 percent in 2014; college-educated women of all races edged by two points.
- Thus exit polls showed that voters under 30, who backed Democrats by 11 percentage points in 2014, backed them by 35 points this time.
- One week ago, three distinct but overlapping currents combined to shift tidal forces in America's midterm elections — and smash the Republican Party's congressional fortress.
Here are the seven senators most likely to lose their seats in 2020
- So far, Republicans have unseated three Democratic senators in this year's midterms, while Democrats have won two GOP-held Senate seats, according to projections.
- The election could have gone worse for Democrats: 26 Democratic senators and independents who caucus with them faced re-election this year, while only nine Republican-held seats were up for grabs.
- The GOP is expected to defend 22 seats, including a special election for the late Sen. John McCain's office, while Democrats are set to face re-election in 12 states.
- Jones won a special election last year to replace Republican Jeff Sessions, who served as President Donald Trump's attorney general until last week.
- But Democrats in Iowa posted solid gains in this year's midterm elections, flipping two of the three GOP-held House seats from red to blue.