How did the army of Donald Trump-backed candidates fare in US midterms?

The Democrats were expected to be blown away in this year’s midterms, to almost definitely lose the House and probably the Senate too.

With the overnight results now counted they definitely haven’t been blown away and they are in with a chance of keeping not just the Senate but the House too.

Here’s how the races are unfolding:

But what does all that mean?

One of the biggest talking points of this year’s campaign was how the army of Republican candidates backed by Trump would do. How influential the former president still is on US politics and whether his seal of approval carries weight with the electorate at large as well as with his base.

Mr Trump officially endorsed 174 of the 430 Republican House candidates, and initial analysis of their results suggests he didn’t help them very much.

Counties with candidates backed by Trump increased Republican vote share by an average of 1.3 percentage points compared with the 2020 election, far less than the 6.9 percentage points gained by the Republicans in counties where he didn’t announce support.

The difference was largest in areas that had been Democrat before, but was still clear in districts that Republicans were defending as well.

This analysis is based on early results from fewer than half of counties, so may not be representative of the final outcome but at least gives us a glimpse of how things are going as we look ahead to the next election in 2024.

Mr Trump is yet to even announce his candidacy but he’s still favourite with the bookies, or at least he was before this election.

What were people bothered about?

On the biggest issues of the day, America’s main two political parties are about as divided as they could be.

Overall, voters thought inflation was the thing that mattered most in deciding how they voted – it’s been almost as bad in the US as it has been in the UK.

Abortion was the next big issue, followed by gun policy, crime and immigration – all on similar levels.

But the way voters split on these issues is really interesting, if a little unsurprising given how the parties campaigned on them. Almost half of Republicans thought inflation was most important, while almost half of Democrats put abortion top.

There were similarly big divides across the other areas of concern.

Joe Biden is as unpopular as a president has ever been on the eve of a first midterm election. Just two in five people approve of the job he is doing, just two years on from electing him, making him more unpopular than Donald Trump was four years ago.

Despite that, his party looks set to fare not too badly among a trend of governing parties losing seats at midterm elections – they lose 28 on average and only three of them have gained seats since before the Second World War.

The Democrats have lost just a handful so far this year and many of those can be put down to redistricting.

Follow the latest results here live as we track the final declarations to see who comes out on top.

The Data and Forensics team is a multi-skilled unit dedicated to providing transparent journalism from Sky News. We gather, analyse and visualise data to tell data-driven stories. We combine traditional reporting skills with advanced analysis of satellite images, social media and other open source information. Through multimedia storytelling we aim to better explain the world while also showing how our journalism is done.

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Mark Gibson

Graduates in Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois 1990. Move to Los Angeles California in 2004. Specialized in Internet journalism.

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