Democrats get first House pick-up of midterm election: US networks

Democrat Jennifer Wexton beat her Republican rival Barbara Comstock in Virginia for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. It was the first seat of the night to flip for the Democrats.
Supporters of Virginia Democratic Congressional candidate, Jennifer Wexton, watch election results come in at her election watch party in Dulles, Virginia on Nov 6, 2018.
Supporters of Virginia Democratic Congressional candidate, Jennifer Wexton, watch election results come in at her election watch party in Dulles, Virginia on Nov 6, 2018.PHOTO: AFP

WASHINGTON (AFP) - Democrats claimed their first pick-up of the midterm elections on Tuesday, networks projected, flipping a US House seat in Virginia seen as crucial to their effort to regain a majority in the chamber.

With nearly two-thirds of ballots counted, Democratic state lawmaker Jennifer Wexton was ahead of Republican incumbent Barbara Comstock by 57 per cent to 43 per cent in their suburban northern Virginia district that Mrs Hillary Clinton won in 2016, NBC reported.

Democrats must gain 23 seats in the 435-member House of Representatives to regain control of the chamber, which is currently led by President Donald Trump's Republicans.