NAHB staff members were also deployed by both sides in the campaign and canvassed voters in the battleground states of Pennsylvania and Wisconsin and elsewhere. (Click here for the full story in this issue of NBN.)
In Alaska, Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) won a tight race against Democrat Tony Knowles to retain her Senate seat.
The nine NAHB-supported House winners included Reps. Bob Beauprez (R-CO), Leonard Boswell (D-IA), Allen Boyd (D-FL), Darlene Hooley (D-OR), Jim Matheson (D-UT), Dennis Moore (D-KS), Randy Neugebauer (R-TX), Rick Renzi (R-AZ) and Heather Wilson (R-NM)
BUILD-PAC, the political action committee of NAHB, distributed a record $2.8 million to candidates running for the U.S. Congress, producing outstanding results.
BUILD-PAC contributed to 30 Senate contests, winning 26, for a success rate of 87%. In the House, BUILD-PAC posted a whopping 97% success rate, supporting 316 winners in the 326 races to which it contributed.
After winning the popular and electoral vote and adding a surprisingly large Republican majority in the Senate and a modest gain in the House, President Bush told the nation that Americans expect a bipartisan effort to accomplish the agenda he outlined during the campaign.
“I’ll reach out to everyone who shares our goals. I earned capital in this election, and I’m going to spend it,” he said.
While the war on terror remains one of the Administration’s top priorities, the President said his Administration would also focus on economic recovery. He listed several issues — tax simplification, overhauling Social Security to add private savings accounts and building on education initiatives. The White House is also expected to push for tort reform and seek to enact a comprehensive energy plan.
The new composition of the Congress may help to make Bush’s job a bit easier. Republicans increased their Senate majority from a narrow 51-49 margin (Senator Jim Jeffords (I-VT) caucuses with the Democrats) to a more comfortable 55-45 split.
The most high-profile Republican win was the defeat of Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle (D-SD) by challenger John Thune. This marked the first time a Senate minority leader has been unseated in 52 years. Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) is expected to assume the role of minority leader.
Senate Republicans increased their margin primarily by picking up several open Democratic seats in the South. New Senators entering the 109th Congress include: Richard Burr (R-NC), Tom Coburn (R-OK), Jim DeMint (R-SC), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Mel Martinez (R-FL), Barack Obama (D-IL), Ken Salazar (D-CO), John Thune (R-SD) and David Vitter (R-LA).
Aided in part by a mid-decade Texas redistricting, House Republicans on Nov. 2 picked up a net gain of five seats in the Lone Star state. The redistricting pitted two losing Democratic incumbents against two GOP lawmakers. Charles Stenholm (D-TX) fell to former home builder Randy Neugebauer and Republican Pete Sessions defeated Democrat Martin Frost. Outside of Texas, Republicans took no more than two seats from Democrats while the Democrats grabbed four from the GOP.
Latest returns show that the GOP majority in the 109th Congress will be 231 Republicans, 201 Democrats and one Independent, with two races still to be determined.
The breakdown in the 108th Congress was 229 Republicans, 205 Democrats and one Independent.
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