Welcome to the Thursday, November 17, Brew.
By: Samuel Wonacott
Here’s what’s in store for you as you start your day:
- In three states, one party has a veto-proof legislative majority while the governor is from the opposite party
- Seven new U.S. senators and 77 new U.S. representatives won election to the 118th Congress
- A combined 2,998 candidates ran for president in 2016 and 2020
In three states, one party has a veto-proof legislative majority while the governor is from the opposite party
In all 50 states, legislators can override gubernatorial vetoes. A party that can override a gubernatorial veto without any votes from members of the minority party has a veto-proof majority. What it takes to override a veto varies depending on the state’s laws (between one-half and two-thirds of sitting legislators). In some cases, the governor will be from a different party than the one that holds a veto-proof majority in the legislature, giving rise to occasional conflicts over vetoes.
Going into the Nov. 8 election, four states had a veto-proof legislative majority and a governor of the opposing party—Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, and Massachusetts. Following the election, Kansas, Kentucky, and Vermont still have veto-proof legislative majorities and a governor of the opposing party.
Here’s where things stand now that the dust from the elections is settling:
- In Kentucky, Republicans maintained their veto-proof majority in both legislative chambers. Gov. Andy Beshear (D) is not up for re-election until 2023.
- In Kansas, Governor Laura Kelly (D) won re-election. Republicans maintained their veto-proof majority in the state Senate because Senate members are not up for election until 2024. Republicans also won at least two-thirds of the seats in the state House of Representatives.
- In Maryland, Democrats won the governorship while maintaining their veto-proof state legislative majority and became a Democratic trifecta. Wes Moore (D) won the Maryland gubernatorial election. Incumbent Larry Hogan (R) was term-limited.
- In Massachusetts, Democrats won the governorship while maintaining their veto-proof legislative majority and became a Democratic trifecta. Maura Healey (D) was elected governor. Incumbent Charlie Baker (R) did not run for re-election.
In Vermont, Democrats gained a veto-proof majority in the Legislature and Gov. Phil Scott (R) was re-elected. Vermont was one of three states that could have switched to having a veto-proof majority and an opposing party governor. The other two were North Carolina and Wisconsin.
- In North Carolina, Republicans gained a three-fifths majority in the state Senate. The final size of the Republican majority in the North Carolina House of Representatives has not yet been determined. North Carolina holds gubernatorial elections in presidential election years, so Gov. Roy Cooper (D) was not up for re-election until 2024.
- In Wisconsin, Republicans gained a two-thirds majority in the state Senate but fell at least two seats short of a two-thirds majority in the Wisconsin Assembly. Incumbent Gov. Tony Evers (D) won re-election.
Vermont wasn’t the only state where one party gained a veto-proof state legislative majority. Republicans gained veto-proof state legislative majorities in Florida and Montana. However, both states have Republican governors.
The map below shows the state legislatures with veto-proof majorities following the election. Uncalled state legislative races in California, North Carolina, and New York could determine whether those states maintain their veto-proof majorities.
Learn more about veto-proof state legislatures and opposing party governors at the link below.
Seven new U.S. senators and 77 new U.S. representatives won election to the 118th Congress
Let’s turn to Congress.
As of this writing, 84 new members have won election to the 118th Congress, including seven U.S. senators and 77 U.S. representatives. For comparison, 71 new members were elected to Congress in the 2020 elections and subsequent runoffs, including nine U.S. senators and 62 U.S. representatives. One-hundred and two new members were elected to Congress in the 2018 election and subsequent runoffs, including nine U.S. senators and 93 U.S. representatives.
- Six new U.S. senators—one Democrat and five Republicans—replaced retiring incumbents from the same party. In Pennsylvania, John Fetterman (D) replaced Sen. Pat Toomey (R)
- Twenty-four of the new U.S. representatives elected—12 Democrats and 12 Republicans—replaced 16 Democratic incumbents and eight Republican incumbents who either did not seek re-election, withdrew from their races, or die in office.
- Eighteen of the new U.S. representatives elected—eight Democrats and ten Republicans—replaced ten Democratic incumbents and eight Republican incumbents who ran for other offices instead of running for reelection.
Due to redistricting, 14 incumbent U.S. representatives—eight Democrats and six Republicans—sought re-election in different congressional districts. In addition, five of the seven new congressional districts created during the reapportionment process resulted in the election of new members. To fill these 19 districts, nine Democrats and eight Republicans were elected. As of this writing, two races that may result in new members of Congress due to redistricting remain uncalled.
16 incumbents—six Democrats and ten Republicans—were defeated in either the primary or general election. Six Democrats and ten Republicans were elected to fill these seats.
Click below to read more about new members elected to Congress.
A combined 2,998 candidates ran for president in 2016 and 2020
The midterm elections aren’t over. For example, the Georgia U.S. Senate race is headed for a runoff. But even though ballots are still being counted and campaigns are still being run, it appears that the 2024 election cycle is already underway. On Nov. 15, former President Donald Trump (R) announced he would run for a second term—and filed the paperwork to make it official.
With that in mind, let’s take a look back at some statistics on presidential candidates in 2016 and 2020.
Anyone can file to run for president with the Federal Elections Commission (FEC). Getting on the ballot is more complex. Presidential candidates must meet a variety of state-specific filing requirements and deadlines. These regulations, known as ballot access laws, are set at the state level, and determine whether a candidate or party will appear on the ballot. A presidential candidate must prepare to meet these requirements well in advance of primaries, caucuses, and the general election. You can review ballot access requirements for presidential candidates here.
In 2016 and 2020, a combined 2,998 individuals filed to run for president with the FEC. In 2016, 1,786 candidates filed with the FEC, while in 2020, that figure was 1,212.
Of the candidates who filed in 2016:
- 228 filed as Democratic candidates
- 288 filed as Republican candidates
- 56 filed as Libertarian candidates
- 14 filed as Green candidates.
Of the candidates who filed in 2020:
- 323 filed as Democratic candidates
- 164 filed as Republican candidates
- 65 filed as Libertarian candidates
- 23 filed as Green candidates
Over the next two years, you can expect to see candidates—notable and otherwise—filing to run for president, and you can keep up with all the names and statistics on our page tracking presidential candidates. First there will be a trickle of filings, and then there will be a flood, so you’ll want to bookmark that page for future reference.