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U.S. Voters Head To Polls As Democrats Expected To Retake House

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With the highly anticipated midterm elections underway across the nation, U.S. voters will head to the polls on Tuesday to decide control of both the House and the Senate.

Recent analysis shows Democrats are likely to retake control of the House of Representatives for the first time since 2010, while Republicans are expected to maintain control of the Senate.

The Cook Political Report's final House ratings released Monday showed 75 races rated as competitive, including 70 Republican-held seats and just five held by Democrats.

David Wasserman, House Editor for the Cook Political Report, noted Democrats would net 16 of the 23 seats they need for a majority just by winning all of the races rated "Lean Democratic."

"In that scenario, Democrats would only need to win eight of the 30 races in Toss Up to win control (they currently hold one Toss Up, Minnesota's 1st CD)," Wasserman wrote.

"Conversely, Republicans would likely need to win 23 of the 30 Toss Up races to keep their majority," he added. "That's not impossible, but it's very difficult."

The Cook Report said the potential for a "blue wave" is partly due to the large number of Republican retirements, with fifteen of the GOP's open seats rated as "Toss Ups" or worse.

Meanwhile, Democrats face a tougher path to retaking control of the Senate, as the party is defending 26 of the 35 seats on the ballot, including ten in states won by President Donald Trump in 2016.

Politico's final ratings released Monday showed Republicans at 50 seats, counting GOP-held seats not up for election this year and those rated as lean, likely or solidly Republican.

Holding 50 seats would allow Republicans to maintain control of the Senate, with Vice President Mike Pence casting the tiebreaking vote.

Politico noted GOP candidates winning Senate races in North Dakota, Tennessee, and Texas that are rated "Lean Republican" would block any path for Democrats to win a majority.

Turnout in the midterm elections is expected to exceed historical levels, however, potentially upending conventional political analysis.

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