Democratic Senator Catherine Cortez Masto will be reelected in Nevada, projects CNN, winning a critical victory that will allow Democrats to retain control of the US Senate.
Cortez Masto has long been considered one of the most vulnerable Democratic incumbents as she fended off a challenge from former Nevada Attorney General Adam Laxalt in a state whose economy had been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic. Covid-19 and inflation.
With Cortez Masto – the first Latino senator – securing a second term, Democrats will hold 50 seats and Republicans 49. Democrats are also defending a seat in Georgia, where Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock and Republican Herschel Walker are heading for a Dec. 6 . runoff. But even if Republicans got that seat, the chamber would still be split evenly, allowing Vice President Kamala Harris to still hold the deciding vote. Democrats were able to hold a majority, in part, because they secured a seat in Pennsylvania, where Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman, a Democrat, beat Trump-backed Mehmet Oz in the contest to replace the Republican senator. retired Pat Toomey.
U.S. House control is still in play and may not be determined for some time, with ballots still to be counted in hotly contested races in California, as well as other states.
Laxalt was closely allied with former President Donald Trump after helping his efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election in the Silver State. But it’s the state’s tough economic climate — with one of the highest inflation rates in the nation and gasoline prices still above $5 a gallon in October — that has become the driving force. of this senatorial contest.
Cortez Masto was elected in 2016 to replace incumbent Democratic Senator Harry Reid, who had been a powerful force in Nevada politics for decades. She touted her efforts during the Covid-19 pandemic to direct global relief and recovery aid to the convention, trade show, entertainment and hospitality industries that are central to the economy of the ‘State.
One of the biggest challenges she faced was that much of Nevada’s population is transient, which meant many voters hadn’t come to know Cortez Masto or her record. Laxalt and Republican-allied groups have sought to tie the Democratic senator to President Joe Biden, whose approval ratings are submerged in a state he narrowly won in 2020.
Although many economic forces are at play in driving inflation, including Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, supply chain issues and the effects of the pandemic, the GOP has made argue that spending and relief bills pushed by Democrats had caused the sticker shock that many Nevadans feel at the gas pump and grocery store. Cortez Masto focused on Democrats’ legislative efforts to cut costs for Americans, including on health care and prescription drugs, while trying to tie his Republican opponent to “big oil.”
Cortez Masto also tried to remind voters of Laxalt’s history as a co-chairman of Trump’s campaign and accused him of promoting an “extreme agenda” and conspiracy theories that she says fueled public takeover. Storming of the US Capitol on January 6, 2021.
She and allied Democratic groups have also tried to argue that Laxalt would endanger abortion rights in Nevada, even if they are protected for up to 24 weeks by a 1990 election referendum. In an op-ed for the Reno Gazette Journal, Laxalt pushed back – saying abortion access was established law in the state and that he would not support a federal ban on abortion.