Nov 6, 2019

3 states' consequential off-year elections: Where it stands

Residents vote on Nov. 5 in Louisville, Kentucky. Photo: John Sommers II/Getty Images

Democrats flipped Virginia's state Senate and House of Delegates on Tuesday, while Kentucky Democrat Andy Beshear held a razor-thin lead over his Trump-backed opponent and the Republicans held on to win the Mississippi governor's mansion.

The big picture: Democrats' win in Virginia adds control of the House of Delegates and the state Senate to the governor's mansion. President Trump used the House impeachment inquiry against him as a political rallying cry in Mississippi and Kentucky gubernatorial races — but its success in campaigns has yet to be seen.

What you need to know

Virginia: Democrats now have the chance to push gun reform, expand Medicaid, raise the state's minimum wage and pass the Equal Rights Amendment, NPR reports. The past year's scandals involving Virginia's three top-ranking Democrats did not seem to keep voters from washing the state totally blue for the first time since 1992.

Mississippi: State Attorney General Jim Hood — an anti-abortion, pro-gun centrist Democrat — lost out to Republican Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves.

Kentucky: Democrat Andy Beshear held a narrow lead Tuesday night over Trump's pick for governor, incumbent Matt Bevin. A win from Beshear would suggest that the impeachment inquiry into Trump is not the useful 2020 strategy Republicans assumed it would be, even in Trump-friendly states.

Editor’s note: This story is being updated as the situation unfolds.

Go deeper

DOJ to treat antifa involvement in protests as domestic terrorism

Barr and Trump. Photo: Doug Mills-Pool/Getty Images

Attorney General Bill Barr said in a statement Sunday that the Justice Department will use its network of 56 regional FBI Joint Terrorism Task Forces to identify the "criminal organizers and instigators" of violence during the George Floyd protests, including antifa and similar groups.

Why it matters: Barr, President Trump and other members of the administration have pinned the blame for riots and looting over the past few days of protests against police brutality on antifa, a loosely defined far-left movement that uses violence and direct-action protest tactics.

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Trump and Zuckerberg share phone call amid social media furor

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In the week that President Trump took on social media, Axios has learned that he had a call Friday with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg that was described by both sides as productive.

Why it matters: With the White House and Twitter at war, Facebook has managed to keep diplomatic relations with the world's most powerful social-media devotee.

Twitter, Google lead chorus of brands backing George Floyd protests

Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

Twitter and Google are among the dozens of brands over the past 24 hours that have taken public stances in favor of Americans protesting racial equality. Some companies have changed their logos in solidarity with the movement, while others have pledged money in support of efforts to address social injustice.

Why it matters: The pressure that companies feel to speak out on issues has increased during the Trump era, as businesses have sought to fill a trust void left by the government. Now, some of the biggest companies are quickly taking a public stand on the protests, pressuring all other brands to do the same.