Democratic Virginia State Sen. Jennifer Wexton just overturned a red seat in the midterm elections — and by a sizable margin. Wexton ousted incumbent Republican Rep. Barbara Comstock from the state’s 10th Congressional District in northern Virginia, taking over a position that’s been held by Republicans for nearly 40 years. She won by nearly 55 percent, with 68 percent of precincts reporting, according to the New York Times.
Although she was favored to win against the two-term Republican congresswoman, the margin by which Wexton captured the seat could be an indicator of Democratic enthusiasm in red districts. Democrats need to gain 23 seats to win control of the House.
Wexton’s wealthy, college-educated district has become increasingly diverse and divided over President Donald Trump in the past two years. Plus, Hillary Clinton won the district by 10 percentage points in 2016, according to the Washington Post.
Meanwhile, Democrat Donna Shalala also succeeded in her bid to replace retiring Florida Republican Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen in representing Florida’s 27th Congressional District, which includes Miami and Miami Beach. Shalala won by nearly 52 percent, with 75 percent of precincts reporting.
The former secretary of Health and Human Services under former President Bill Clinton, who is 77 years old, ran against Republican Maria Elvira Salazar, a 56-year-old former broadcast journalist. Hillary Clinton won the district by nearly 20 percentage points in 2016, the highest margin for any Republican-held district, according to NBC News. The district also has a Hispanic majority.
Cover: Democratic U.S. House candidate and Virginia State Sen. Jennifer Wexton (D-33rd District) participates in the annual Haymarket Day parade October 20, 2018 in Haymarket, Virginia. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)