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Democratic Senate candidate Jaime Harrison conceded the race to incumbent Sen. Lindsey Graham on Tuesday after fundraising over $100 million during his campaign. Photo: Michael Ciaglo/Getty

Congressional races saw record-shattering fundraising numbers this year, with Democrats pouring money into candidates challenging Republican incumbents.

Why it matters: Democrats heavily invested in these contenders with the hope of flipping the Senate. The races brought in an outpouring of small-dollar donations.

The big picture: Though Democratic campaigns collected many millions of dollars this election cycle, several races in key states have resulted in losses.

What they're saying: "You wasted a lot of money," Graham said in his victory speech Tuesday night after defeating Harrison. “This is the worst return on investment in the history of American politics."

The bottom line: Despite picking up Senate seats in Colorado and Arizona, Democrats' hopes of winning control of the Senate faded as they lost a series of high-profile races.

Go deeper

Senate confirms Trump's youngest judicial pick as GOP breaks tradition

The U.S. Senate. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

The Senate on Wednesday confirmed lawyer Kathryn Kimball Mizelle to a lifetime judgeship on U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida in a 49-41 vote.

Why it matters: It's the sixth Trump-appointed district judge the Senate has confirmed since Election Day, breaking with the body's tradition against approving nominees of a lame-duck president.

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Key government agency says Biden transition can formally begin

General Services Administrator Emily Murphy. Photo: Alex Edelman/CNP/Getty Images

General Services Administrator Emily Murphy said in a letter to President-elect Joe Biden on Monday that she has determined the transition from the Trump administration can formally begin.

Why it matters: Murphy, a Trump appointee, had come under fire for delaying the so-called "ascertainment" and withholding the funds and information needed for the transition to begin while Trump's legal challenges played out.

Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Vaccines: Key information about the effective COVID-19 vaccines — Oxford and AstraZeneca's vaccine won't just go to rich countries.
  2. Health: U.S. coronavirus hospitalizations keep breaking recordsWhy we're numb to 250,000 deaths.
  3. World: England to impose stricter regional systemU.S. hotspots far outpacing Europe's — Portugal to ban domestic travel for national holidays.
  4. Economy: The biggest pandemic labor market drags.
  5. Sports: Coronavirus precautions leave college basketball schedule in flux.