11.7.2018

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All your news in a single email. We scour 100+ sources so you don't have to. Culture, science, sports, politics, business, and more - all packaged in a 5-minute read below.
Need To Know.
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House Flips, Senate Stays.
With 218 seats needed to control the lower chamber, Democrats officially retook control of the US House of Representatives last night, gaining at least 26 seats to post a 220-194 majority as of early this morning. A number of the 435 races are yet to be decided, and Democrats are expected to finish around a 229-206 majority. It is the first time the House has flipped parties since a conservative wave in 2010, and transfers power back to now-Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D, CA-12). Analysts say the upset of the night may have been Kendra Horn (D) over incumbent Steve Russell (R) in the OK-5 district, which voted for President Trump 53%-40% in 2016 - see full House results here

The US Senate was a different story, where Republicans expanded their majority by defeating Democratic incumbents Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), Joe Donnelly (D-IN), and Claire McCaskill (D-MO). In Texas, incumbent Ted Cruz (R-TX) held off challenger Beto O'Rouke (D) in a high-profile race. The only positive news for Democrats was Jacky Rosen knocking off incumbent Dean Heller (D-NV) in Nevada. With a handful of races still being settled - including a tight one in Arizona for former Senator John McCain's seat - the GOP is projected to end with a 53-47 majority (and possibly 54-46). 

Nearly 118 million votes were cast, blowing away the 84 million total in 2014, while
spending on ads hit a midterm record $4.7B, more than doubling the amount spent in 2014.
And at the State Level...
Democrats also made gains in a number of gubernatorial races across the country, though Republicans defended a number of conservative strongholds. In two high-profile races, Ron DeSantis (R) edged out Andrew Gillum (D) in Florida, while Brain Kemp (R) defeated Stacey Abrams (D) in Georgia. Abrams had not conceded the race as of this writing, citing concerns over voting irregularities. Republicans also defended a seat in Ohio, where Mike DeWine beat Richard Cordray to take Gov. John Kasich's open seat. Democrats scored a number of surprise victories, including ousting Scott Walker (R) in Wisconsin and beating Kris Kobach (R) in Kansas. Democrats also flipped seats in Illinois, New Mexico, Maine, and Michigan, ultimately gaining 6 seats. Republicans are on track to retain control of 27 governor seats, down from 33 entering the day - see full results here. In notable ballot initiatives, Florida will restore voting rights to nearly 1 million felons and Michigan became the 10th state to legalize marijuana

In Georgia, eventual winner Kemp's own voting card was rejected on first pass after his voting machine marked him as "invalid". 
And Looking Forward.
With the House under Democratic control, the US returns to a divided government after a two-year hiatus. Democrats have signaled they will exert the oversight capabilities of the House, having compiled over 60 inquiries they say were previously denied. Control of the House also effectively stymies items on President Trump's agenda that were not tackled in his first two years, forcing compromise (or halting progress) on issues like immigration and healthcare. Republicans retain the ability to approve the President's judges and nominations for other political appointees. While many expect the government to slow down dramatically, some say both sides might find common ground on areas like prison reform and infrastructure spending. At the state level, one of the largest-reaching impacts will be on the congressional districts within the states, which will be redrawn in 2021 by the governors and state lawmakers elected in 2018 and 2020. 

A record number of women will serve in the next Congress, with at least 113 across both the House and Senate. 
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In The Know.
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Sports, Entertainment & Culture.
> Actor Idris Elba named 2018's Sexiest Man Alive by People Magazine (More) | Pop singer Ariana Grande named Billboard's 2018 Woman of the Year (More)
> Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt reportedly headed to trial over custody of their six children (More)
> #4 Duke dominates #2 Kentucky 118-84 in opening day of college basketball (More) | See full day one results here (More)
Science & Technology.
> Tim Berners-Lee, recognized as a leading inventor of the Internet, launches campaign to "save the web" (More) | See core principles including access and data privacy (More)
> Stanford spin-out Royole debuts first foldable smartphone; reportedly beats electronics giant Samsung to the punch by just days (More)
> Statistical analysis of skeletal remains suggests frequent inbreeding may have caused wave of deformities in ancient human populations (More)
Business & Markets.
Brought to you by Policygenius: Insurance made easy
> Budget airline Icelandair to acquire biggest competitor, Wow Air - also based in Iceland - pending antitrust approval (More) | European Commission conditionally approves Disney's purchase of 21st Century Fox's entertainment assets, must first sell stake in select TV channels (More)
> Preliminary US ruling forces chipmaker Qualcomm to license certain patented technologies to competitors, including Intel (More)
> Telcom giant AT&T to remove over a dozen customers with a history of piracy, in a crackdown on copyright violation (More)

> Need life insurance? Compare quotes, apply online, and get expert help with Policygenius (More)
Politics & World Affairs.
> UN confirms over 200 mass graves across Iraq left behind by ISIS, containing between 6,000 and 12,000 bodies (More)
> Six arrested in plot against French President Emmanuel Macron (More) | Separately, Macron makes push for multilateral European army (More)
> Diwali, one of the largest Hindu celebrations of the year, begins today (More) | What is Diwali? (More)
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Did you take a selfie with your ballot? You may have broken the law
 
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