Cortez Masto wins Nevada — victory cements Senate control for the Dems
Catherine Cortez Masto / Shutterstock

Democrats have been projected winners of the United States Senate after Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto was projected winner of the battleground U.S. Senate race in Nevada.

According to projections from NBC News and CBS News, Cortez Mastro triumphed over Republican Adam Laxalt, the state's former attorney general, who also lost his 2018 campaign for governor.

After Friday night's projection that Arizona Democrat Mark Kelly had also won, Democrats are projected to hold 50 seats to 49 for Republicans.

This will slightly decrease the stakes of Georgia's Dec. 6 runoff election between Sen. Raphael Warnock and GOP challenger Herschel Walker. If Democrats prevail in the runoff, they will have some wiggle room of being able to lose a vote and still have Vice President Kamala Harris cast a vote to put the legislation over the top. In his first two years, Democrats Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) and Joe Machin (D-WV) were able to single-handedly hold up legislation.

But Republicans also have a lot to gain, as keeping an evenly split Senate is what allows either Sinema or Manchin to hold up the White House's agenda.

Jon Ralston, the dean of the Nevada political press corps, wrote "candidates and campaigns matter."

"Adam Laxalt is an abysmal candidate who has lived on his last name for credibility and fundraising since he moved here a decade ago," Ralston explained. "Anyone with an R after his or her name would be competitive this cycle, and his automaton-like performance, where he can disgorge puerile talking points to thrill the faithful and avoid any serious questioning (a candidate for governor and Senate who never debated!) has been something to behold. Laxalt’s campaign has been desultory and depressing. Cortez Masto is not exactly Rita Moreno on the campaign trail, but she has been disciplined and on message, and her media has been sharp and memorable."

Donald Trump has been spreading conspiracy theories about voter fraud in Nevada.

In a Thursday conference call hosted by National Republican Senatorial Committee Chairman Rick Scott (R-FL), Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) claimed without evidence that it was impossible for Laxalt to lose, Politico reported.

“There is no mathematical way Laxalt loses,” Graham falsely claimed. “If he does, then it’s a lie.”

Laxalt, who has been described as the "Nevada version of Rudy Giuliani," reportedly began preparing "voter fraud" legal challenges 220 days before the midterm election.