Marsha Blackburn

Photos of the Week: Lame Duck, New Member Orientation and Official Class Photos
The week of Nov. 12 as captured by Roll Call's photographers

Rep.-elect Lauren Underwood, D-Ill., arrives for New Member Orientation at the Courtyard Marriott in Southeast D.C., on Tuesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The midterms have come and gone and it’s back to the Hill for members new and old. The lame duck sessions in the House and Senate gaveled in Tuesday while new member orientation kicked off its first week.

The chambers, along with orientation, recess next week for the Thanksgiving holiday and will start up sessions again the week of Nov. 26.

Midterms Were a Buffet Election for Democrats, Republicans
Each side can pick what it liked best from the results — and ignore warning signs

Sen.-elect Mike Braun, R-Ind., Sen.-elect Mitt Romney, R-Utah, Sen.-elect Josh Hawley, R-Mo., Sen.-elect Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., Gov. Rick Scott, R-Fla., and Sen.-elect Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., pose for a group photo in McConnell’s office in the Capitol on Wednesday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

When I was a kid in small-town Oregon, my family would occasionally go to King’s Table, and my sister and I would get free rein at the buffet.

I became famous in my own family for my condiment salad — an impressive collection of bacon bits, croutons, shredded cheese, sunflower seeds and plenty of ranch dressing. Essentially, my strategy involved choosing what looked and tasted good and avoiding anything of nutritional value.

The Candidates Mattered. But Opinions About Trump Mattered More
Different outcomes in the House and Senate mostly about the president

Democratic Sens. Heidi Heitkamp and Joe Donnelly both lost their bids for second terms Tuesday night. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Both parties had something to celebrate after Tuesday’s midterm elections, depending on where they looked. But that split outcome — with Democrats winning the House, and Republicans gaining seats in the Senate — underscores the extent to which opinions about President Donald Trump shape today’s politics.

Republicans largely prevailed at the Senate level because they were running in red states where President Donald Trump performed well in 2016. The House saw the opposite outcome, but the reason was the same. Republicans largely struggled because they were running in places where Trump was unpopular.

Meet the History-Makers of the 116th Congress
In a banner year for candidate diversity, election night witnesses a few firsts

Ayanna Pressley is the first African-American elected to the House from Massachusetts. (Scott Eisen/Getty Images file photo)

Updated Sunday, 3:18 p.m. | Diversity has been a hallmark of the 2018 midterm elections, which have seen a record number of women, minorities and first-time candidates running for office. 

Here are some of the history-makers from election night. 

Democratic House Means More Time for Senate Nominations — And Another Trump SCOTUS Pick?
The Senate will still have plenty to do, even as legislation languishes with divided government

Unlike the House Republicans, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell,of Kentucky will have reason to smile after Tuesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is fond of saying that unlike the House, the Senate is in the “personnel business.”

That is only going to be more true in the 116th Congress, with Democrats taking control of the House and chances for legislating likely becoming fewer and further between.

Republicans Maintain Senate Control
Democrats lose seats in Indiana, North Dakota and Missouri

Senate Republicans, led by Mitch McConnell, have retained their control of the chamber after the 2018 midterms. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Republicans will maintain control of the Senate, but it is still unclear by how narrow a margin.

The Associated Press projects the chamber will remain in Republican hands, with a Democratic takeover blocked after losses in Indiana and North Dakota. Things got worse for Democrats later in the night when they lost Missouri, too. 

Marsha Blackburn Prevails in Tennessee Senate Race
She becomes the Volunteer State’s first female senator (and the first GOP woman elected statewide)

Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., speaks at the 2016 Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, in 2016. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Republican Marsha Blackburn has won the open-seat Senate race in Tennessee, defeating a popular former governor.

With 74percent of precincts reporting, the eight-term congresswoman led Democrat Phil Bredesen 55 percent to 43 percent in the race to succeed retiring GOP Sen. Bob Corker when The Associated Press called the race.

5 Things That Defined the Fight for the Senate
Democrats still largely on defense, but battlefield shifted some this cycle

Former state Rep. Mike Braun defeated two congressmen in the Indiana Senate Republican primary. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The battle over Supreme Court Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh’s confirmation threw a wildcard into the race for Senate control. But the contours of the fight for the chamber aren’t much different from a year ago: Democrats running for re-election in states President Donald Trump carried by wide margins in 2016 are in trouble heading into Election Day.

Democrats are defending 26 seats — 10 of them in states that backed Trump — while Republicans are only defending nine. Given that imbalance, it’s no surprise that Trump’s effect on Senate races has been different from his influence on the fight for control of the House, where he’s put GOP incumbents on defense.

A Definitive Ranking of Midterm Celebrity Stumpers
Actors, singers and sports legends got involved in 2018. But how much did they really do?

Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate from Texas Rep. Beto O'Rourke joins Willie Nelson on stage during his Turn out For Texas Rally, featuring a concert by Wille Nelson, in Austin, Texas on Saturday, Sept. 29, 2018. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

If an Instagram post falls in the middle of election, does it make a sound?

Celebrities got a lot of credit for their political moonlighting this campaign cycle, from Beto-mania to … well, Beto-mania. But let’s be honest: How much did they really do?

Marsha Blackburn — The Name That at Least a Couple of GOP Colleagues Are Loath to Say
Tennessee Sen. Corker and Gov. Haslam declined to explicitly say they voted for her

Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., who is running for Senate, has tepid support from two of the top three Republicans in her state. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Two of the top three Republican lawmakers in Tennessee declined to explicitly say this week whether they voted for the GOP’s Senate nominee, Rep. Marsha Blackburn.

Sen. Bob Corker, the retiring chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, whose Volunteer State seat Blackburn is running to fill, and term-limited Gov. Bill Haslam, each hinted that they voted for Blackburn over centrist Democratic candidate and former governor Phil Bredesen — but declined to use Blackburn’s name when answering reporters’ questions.