Democrat Kyrsten Sinema is the apparent winner

Bill Clark | CQ-Roll Call Group | Getty Images

Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate Rep. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., speaks to supporters at the United Food and Commercial Workers union in Phoenix, Ariz., on Sunday, Oct. 21, 2018. 

Trump tweet: Just out — in Arizona, SIGNATURES DON’T MATCH. Electoral corruption – Call for a new Election? We must protect our Democracy!

The Sinema-McSally race was widely viewed as one of the Democrats’ best opportunities to gain seats in an unfavorable Senate election map. Democrats were defending 26 Senate seats in the midterms, while Republicans were defending nine.

And with Flake, an outspoken Trump critic, choosing not to run for re-election, Republicans lost the incumbent advantage that might otherwise have shielded them from a serious Democratic challenge.

Instead, analysts forecasted a neck-and-neck race that appeared to break in Sinema’s favor in the final days before the election,according to an NBC News/Marist poll. Analyses from RealClearPolitics and Sabato’s Crystal Ball called the race a toss-up, while FiveThirtyEight gave Sinema a slight edge.

Sinema, who tried to run as a moderate, came under fire in October after Republican and conservative organizations released video clips of the Democrat from years earlier appearing to make fun of her state and its residents.

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