Democrats across the country saw significant victories on Election Night and came out on top as the big winners in a number of races that Republicans hoped to use as a springboard into the 2024 elections.
Republicans also saw some wins, but fell far short of where they hoped to finish the 2023 off-year election cycle and missed out on what could have been significant momentum heading into next year.
Democrat Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear won one of the most notable victories of the night, defeating his Republican opponent, state Attorney General Daniel Cameron, in a race that many thought was achievable for the GOP considering the deep-red state’s conservative roots.
Beshear largely avoided highlighting his support for President Biden and focused heavily on local issues as he traveled the state while Cameron leaned into his endorsement from former President Donald Trump, who remains popular with Kentucky voters.
However, Trump’s popularity among Kentuckians fell short of Beshear’s, who maintained his status as one of the most popular governors in the country in the months leading up to the election. With his victory, Beshear is one of only three remaining Democrat governors leading a red state.
In Mississippi, incumbent Republican Gov. Tate Reeves fended off a formidable challenge from Democrat Brandon Presley, a former mayor and Mississippi Public Service Commission member who is also the second cousin to famed rock-n-roll legend Elvis Presley.
A surge in unexpected amounts of national Democrat money into the race helped boost Presley’s candidacy, including from the Democratic Governors Association, which gave nearly $6 million to his campaign. The amount was a sharp increase from the just over $2 million the group gave the Democrat nominee who lost to Reeves in 2019.
Presley conceded the race to Reeves before the latter was declared the winner by any national outlets.
Democrats in Virginia also had something to celebrate Tuesday as they won control of the House of Delegates from Republicans and beat back GOP Gov. j efforts to flip the state Senate red from the narrow Democrat majority that currently controls the chamber.
Virginia’s legislative elections grabbed outsized national attention, with both Democrats and Republicans spending millions on races, which were viewed in political circles as a key barometer ahead of the 2024 elections for president, control of Congress.
In September, Biden reportedly directed the Democratic National Committee to dump $1.2 million into Virginia’s legislative races, a sure sign at the time that the president was looking to counter Youngkin’s influence on voters in the state, and a strategy that appears to have had some affect.
In Ohio, supporters of Issue 1, a ballot referendum that would enshrine the constitutional ‘right’ to an abortion into the state constitution, saw an overwhelming victory as voters overwhelmingly voted ‘yes’ on the measure.
The ‘yes’ votes defeated the ‘no’ votes by more than double digits.
Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.
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