Republicans win back Obama's home state Illinois

2014-11-05 09:09
Republican supporters cheer as a television broadcast declares the Republicans had taken control of the Senate at the Colorado Republican party's election night event at the Denver Tech Centre Hyatt. (AFP)

Republican supporters cheer as a television broadcast declares the Republicans had taken control of the Senate at the Colorado Republican party's election night event at the Denver Tech Centre Hyatt. (AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

New York - Republican governors in Florida, Kansas, Michigan and Wisconsin fended off Democratic challengers on Tuesday in four hard-fought contests that proved wrong predictions of punishment for incumbents over an uneven economy and fiscal problems.

Republicans also won back the governorships in three Democratic strongholds, Massachusetts, Maryland and President Barack Obama's home state of Illinois, according to projections after polls closed in most of the United States.

The big wins at the state level reinforced the good showing nationwide for Republicans, who captured control of the US Senate in the midterm elections, setting up a complicated end to Obama's second term.

"All the close races are tipping the GOP way, not only among the governors but in the Senate, we saw the same thing," said Lee Miringoff, director of the Marist Institute for Public Opinion.

Tight races

"The Republicans are definitely having between a good and a great night, depending on how the remaining few states clock in," he said.

Incumbents from both parties were locked in tight races in Connecticut, Alaska, Colorado and Kansas.

One state spoiling the Republican victory run on Tuesday was Pennsylvania, where the Republican governor lost badly to his Democratic challenger in the wake of unpopular fiscal policies.

In Wisconsin, a political flashpoint in recent years, Republican Governor Scott Walker, a conservative Tea Party favorite considered to have presidential aspirations, defeated Democrat Mary Burke, Reuters/Ipsos projected. He famously survived a recall election in 2012, beating back a labor-backed effort to oust him from the governor's office.

"We thought more about the next generation than we did about the next election," Walker told supporters.

In Florida, one of the most important swing states in the nation, Republican Governor Rick Scott was the projected winner over Charlie Crist, a former Republican governor turned Democrat who appeared to suffer from low turnout in his strongholds. Both candidates struggled with low popularity during the contest that featured months of attack ads on both sides.

"It's time to put all the division behind us and come together. Forget the partisanship," Scott told supporters after receiving a call from Crist.

Brownback survives fiscal woes

Michigan Governor Rick Snyder prevailed over a Democratic political insider, former U.S. Representative Mark Schauer. In the home of the American auto industry, state finances improved under Snyder's watch and the bankrupt city of Detroit edged closer to getting back on course.

Kansas Republican Governor Sam Brownback won re-election by beating Democrat Paul Davis in the historically Republican state despite a bruising campaign that focused on the fiscal problems that followed Brownback's tax cuts.

The biggest disappointments for Democrats might have come in famously blue states.

In Illinois, Republican businessman Bruce Rauner defeated Democratic Governor Pat Quinn in a vote for change in the state with the country's worst public pension crisis and lowest credit rating.

"It's the Land of Lincoln and the Land of Lincoln is going down the tubes," said Neil Barrot of Schaumburg, a suburb of Chicago. "I don't think it's a beacon of America anymore. Policy and leadership attracts jobs and there's virtually no leadership here."

Rauner, 57, who spent millions of dollars of his own money in his first bid for public office, said he wanted to make Illinois friendlier to business by lowering income tax rates.

Republican Charlie Baker, the former chief executive of a New England health insurer, won the Massachusetts governor's race, beating Democrat Martha Coakley, in the contest to replace Governor Deval Patrick, a Democrat who is retiring.

But in Pennsylvania, Republican Governor Tom Corbett lost to Democrat Tom Wolf, making him the first incumbent governor in his state's modern history to fail to win a second term.

In his concession speech to supporters in Pittsburgh, Corbett said he had made tough choices as governor knowing they would be unpopular.

"I said I might be a one-term governor, and I am. And I am proud," Corbett said.

Democrats fell way short as expected in the state of Texas, where Republican Greg Abbott, the state's attorney general, defeated his Democratic opponent, state Senator Wendy Davis, who had become a party icon for a 10-hour filibuster against abortion restrictions.

Read more on:    democrats  |  republicans  |  barack obama  |  us

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.