Democrats seized control of the House of Representatives on Tuesday in a midterm setback for Donald Trump, but the USA president managed to avoid a feared "blue wave" as his Republican Party expanded its Senate majority after a polarizing, racially charged campaign.
In midterm elections two years after he won the White House, Trump and his fellow Republicans expanded their majority in the US Senate following a divisive campaign marked by fierce clashes over race, immigration and other cultural issues. Democratic incumbents also prevailed in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin, Midwestern states that Trump carried narrowly two years ago. In addition, Fox News is calling this for the Democrats.
Democrats could derail Trump's legislative agenda for the next two years should they win control of the House.
That was enough to give pundits confidence in calling the overall race for a majority in the House.
Trump sought to take credit for retaining the GOP's Senate majority, even as the party lost control of the House.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi hopes to become speaker again, though many Democratic candidates, particularly in states Trump won, said they would not support her.
"Tremendous success tonight. Thank you to all!" the president wrote on Twitter. In District 16, Democrat Tammy Story has a 13 percent lead over incumbent Republican Tim Neville, with 55 percent of the vote as of 10:36 p.m. on Election Night.
Tuesday's result was a bitter outcome for Trump, a 72-year-old former reality TV star who campaigned for fellow Republicans on increasingly hostile anti-immigrant rhetoric and was accused of inciting violence in recent weeks.
The White House has been stressing the historical headwinds it faced: In the last three decades, 2002 was the only midterm election when the party in office gained Senate seats.
Democrats were most optimistic about the House, a sprawling battlefield set largely in America's suburbs where more educated and affluent voters in both parties have soured on Trump's turbulent presidency, despite the strength of the national economy.
Democrats' dreams of the Senate majority, always unlikely, were shattered after losses in top Senate battlegrounds: Indiana, Missouri, Tennessee, North Dakota and Texas.
In Texas, former presidential candidate Ted Cruz fought over a close race from Democrat Beto O'Rourke. Andrew Gillum lost to Republican Ron DeSantis in his quest to become Florida's first black governor.
Jared Polis defeated Republican Walker Stapleton. Democrat state legislator Laura Kelly will be that state's next governor. The president urged supporters to "pretend" he was on the ballot.
In suburban areas where key House races were decided, female voters skewed significantly toward Democrats by a almost 10-point margin.
A record number of women ran for office this election, many of them Democrats turned off by Trump's policy agenda.
Under a Democratic-controlled House, Democrats will have more authority and fewer constraints on their ability to exercise oversight of the Trump administration and could launch investigations into the President's finances, including going after his tax returns, as well as ramp up a probe into the possibility that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russian government to win the White House, which Trump has denied.
With divided leadership in Congress and a president who has taken an expansive view of executive power, Washington could be in store for even deeper political polarization and legislative gridlock.
But nonetheless, Republicans have been bracing for a loss in the House, though they anticipate keeping ahold of the Senate.
Six of the seven Democratic state senators unseated in the primaries were members of the now-defunct Independent Democratic Conference, a coalition of wealthy Senate Democrats.
Democrats faced a far more hard challenge in the Senate, where they were nearly exclusively on defence in rural states where Mr Trump remains popular. Stay with us for further updates. Immediately following the primary, the president came in and unified the party. "I like the fact that he is not a politician, and I forgive some of the socially incorrect or politically incorrect things that he says".