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Republican Rep. Carlos Curbelo of Florida lost re-election Tuesday to his Democrat challenger, Debbie Mucarsel-Powell.

Why it matters: Curbelo, a two-term Republican, was a top target for the Democrats from the get-go and considered a bellwether of a blue wave. The outcome also represents a loss for the Climate Solutions Caucus, a bipartisan House caucus Curbelo founded in 2016.

The big picture: The 38-year-old Curbelo, first elected to Congress in 2014, embodies the moderate GOP mold considered key to Republicans keeping control of the House. He represents the tip of Florida, a swing district whose residents regularly experience rising sea levels, one of the clearest and most present impacts of climate change.

  • Climate change is a top priority for Curbelo, who has regularly criticized President Trump on several issues.
  • Curbelo introduced legislation in July that taxes carbon emissions, the first substantive climate legislation by a Republican in a decade.

In an interview this summer, Curbelo brushed off prospects of losing.

“I don’t worry about those kinds of things. I didn’t go to college to serve in Congress. I’m going to be as effective as possible while I’m here. The day I’m not here, I’ll be perfectly fine.”
— GOP Rep. Carlos Curbelo of Florida

What’s next: The prospect of bipartisan climate policy, something many independent experts say is necessary to make substantive progress on the issue, drops significantly with Curbelo exiting Congress.

Go deeper: Climate change is finally getting political cred with Republicans

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Supreme Court rejects request to extend Wisconsin absentee ballot deadline

Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

The Supreme Court rejected in a 5-3 decision Monday Wisconsin Democrats' request to reinstate an extension of the deadline for counting absentee ballots to six days after Election Day, as long as they're postmarked by Nov. 3.

Why it matters: All ballots must now be received by 8 p.m. on Election Day in Wisconsin, a critical swing state in the presidential election.

Senate confirms Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court

Judge Amy Coney Barrett before a meeting on Capitol Hill on Oct. 21. Photo: Sarah Silbiger/pool/AFP via Getty Images

The Senate voted 52-48 on Monday to confirm Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. She is expected to be sworn in within hours.

Why it matters: President Trump and Senate Republicans have succeeded in confirming a third conservative justice in just four years, tilting the balance of the Supreme Court firmly to the right for perhaps a generation.