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US PRESIDENT Donald Trump was dealt a blow last night, when the results of the country’s midterm elections showed the Democrats taking control of the House of Representatives.
They took 220 of the 435 seats in the lower chamber of Congress, with the Republicans winning just 193, making it harder for Mr Trump to push his policies through.
With the Democrats holding a majority in the House for the first time in eight years, the elections continued a trend of the opposition party making gains in the midterms — both Barack Obama and Bill Clinton lost control of the House in their first terms and went on to win re-election.
However, this week’s polling, which saw the highest turnout since the 1970s, was seen as a referendum on Mr Trump’s highly divisive presidency.
The Democrats’ victory could pave the way for the opening of investigations into Mr Trump’s tax affairs and other issues and some of his controversial plans could also be blocked.
Some observers have suggested that the president could end up facing impeachment, with just a simple majority required in the House to start proceedings.
However, Mr Trump struck a defiant tone despite the poor results, congratulating himself on a “big win” and he threatened to take action against his political opponents if they open investigations against him.
“If the Democrats think they are going to waste taxpayer money investigating us at the House level, then we will likewise be forced to consider investigating them for all of the leaks of classified information, and much else, at the Senate level. Two can play that game,” the belligerent billionaire ranted.
Twenty-nine-year-old socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez became the youngest-ever woman elected to Congress when she won the House seat representing New York’s 14th district.
After running a grassroots campaign, she said: “This is what is possible when everyday people come together in the collective realisation that all our actions — no matter how small or how large — are powerful, worthwhile and capable of lasting change.”
Palestinian-American activist Rashida Tlaib, one of the first two Muslim women elected to Congress, vowed to take on the "biggest bully,” as she called Mr Trump.
She said she was entering the House at a time when anti-immigrant and racist attacks are on the rise, fuelled by the language and policies of the president.
“It happened now, at a time where we just feel there’s so much hate in our country,” she said.
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