At a press conference held at his home in Brunswick, Maine, independent Senator Angus King announced that he plans to continue caucusing with the Democrats, after months of speculation that he might switch allegiances if the GOP took control of the Senate.
King has been flirting with the Republican Party for some time now. After his first Senate win in 2012, it took him over a week to decide to caucus with the Democratic Party in the majority. Earlier this year, King hinted that he might caucus with the Republicans if they took the Senate. “I’ll make my decision at the time based on what I think is best for Maine,” he said at the time.
Speculation increased last month when King endorsed Tennessee Republican Lamar Alexander in his Senate reelection bid. Alexander was the clear favorite to win… but also a close personal friend of Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.
Republicans are currently projected to have won 52 Senate seats, with likely wins in Alaska and the December Louisiana runoff. With the addition of King, Republicans would have potentially controlled 55 seats, the largest margin since the 1998 election.
Republicans are also reportedly courting Democratic West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin, a moderate who expressed his displeasure with his party and President Obama on election night.