United States elections, 1998

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The 1998 elections in the United States were held on November 3, 1998. The elections showed little swings, as the composition in both houses of the United States Congress were not significantly altered.

In the United States Senate elections, neither party made gains, as Republicans won Senate seats from Illinois, Kentucky, and Ohio. Democrats won seats in New York, North Carolina, and Indiana.

The parallel House of Representatives elections saw a significant disruption of the historic six-year itch trend, where the President's party loses seats in the second-term midterm elections, as the Democrats picked up 5 seats in the House. This also marked the second time in U.S. history since the Civil War that the President's party gained seats in a midterm election, the first being 1934 and the third being 2002. This is also the only time this has happened during the president's second term rather than their first.

Furthermore, neither party made net gains in Governorships that year.


At the time, Dan Savage, in his post-election advice column, wrote about the impressive progressive victories:

November 4, 1998 - I am simply too preoccupied by grave matters of state to answer questions about sex.... Republican U,S. Senator Alfonse D'Amato defeated by Charles Schumer in New York. Democratic U.S. senator Barbara Boxer re-elected in California. Two incumbent Republican governors turned out of office - in the South! Republican senator Lauch Faircloth defeated by a political novice, John Edwards.... Democrats hold their ground in the Senate, gain five seats in the House.... Pundits, Web sites, and newspaper columnists are crediting Republican losses to voter disgust over how Republican leaders have handled the Monica Lewinsky scandal.[1]


  1. ^ Savage, Dan (November 17, 1998). "Savage Love". Village Voice. p. 187.