On Tuesday, the midterm elections could be argued as victories for both parties. It left a lot of Americans wondering what the results were really saying about the direction of the country. Democrats flipped the House of Representatives by picking up more than the needed 23 seats. That said, Republicans maintained control of the Senate and even picked up a few seats. Even though Republicans didn’t see a “Blue Wave” per say, there were still some heartbreaking losses for the party. Here are six of the most heartbreaking losses we had Tuesday night. 

John James – U.S. Senate from Michigan

A combat veteran, John James ran a fierce campaign that garnered support from conservatives all over the country. After winning a tough primary, James continued to run on a conservative platform, but made it clear that he was fighting for all of Michigan, not his Michigan Republicans. Unfortunately, he was defeated by Democrat Debbie Stabenow by a little less than seven points.

Scott Walker – Wisconsin Governor

Scott Walker has been a star of the Republican Party since his initial election in 2010 and even briefly ran for president in 2016. His reelection platform remained conservative and true to his values, and he warned his supporters that he could be in danger at the polls. Walker survived an attempted recall election in 2012 and won reelection in 2014 before he was ultimately defeated by just over one point this year.

Mia Love – Utah’s 4th Congressional District

Mia Love, a moderate Republican who is notably a leader on conservative approaches to climate change, is predicted to lose her reelection bid in Utah with seventy percent of the vote counted. Love is openly not a fan of the president and criticized him before and since he took office. On Wednesday, Trump slammed Love, saying, “she gave me no love.”

Carlos Curbelo – Florida’s 26th Congressional District

Also mentioned by the president in Wednesday’s press conference, Curbelo lost his reelection bid by approximately two points. Like Love, Curbelo has not shied away from criticizing the president and ran a campaign that did not rely on the president’s endorsement or support. Curbelo is the co-founder and co-chairman of the bipartisan Climate Solutions Caucus.

Leah Vukmir – U.S. Senate from Wisconsin

Leah Vukmir served in the Wisconsin Senate and was a first-term candidate for the U.S. Senate this election cycle. Vukmir also worked as a registered nurse and is a military mom. Although she had solid support from Wisconsin conservatives and the president throughout her campaign, she lost by almost eleven points against incumbent Tammy Baldwin.

Barbara Comstock – Virginia’s 10th Congressional District

Barbara Comstock was initially elected to the House of Representatives in 2014 and won reelection in 2016. Comstock is a fairly moderate Republican in a blue-leaning district. In fact, President Trump is very unpopular in her district, and analysts have attributed her loss to this fact.

As always in midterm elections, Tuesday was indirectly – and in some ways directly – about the president. Moderate Republicans, like Love and Curbelo, who stood up against the president on some issues, ultimately lost their seats. That said, Republican candidates who embraced the president also lost on Tuesday. As the “Big Tent” Party, Republicans need to encourage conversation and inclusion of slightly different views. Disagreeing with the president does not mean you can’t be a Republican.

Karly M.
Karly Matthews is a student at Temple University, where she is majoring in political science and journalism while minoring in Spanish. At any given moment, Karly can be found talking about Marco Rubio and advocating for conservative values with a large coffee mug and color-coded planner in hand.

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