Angus King of Maine helps Senate tilt toward Democrats

Angus King, an Independent, won Republican Olympia Snowe's Senate seat earlier this month. Angus King says he has decided to caucus with Democrats, giving them a 10-vote advantage in the Senate starting in January.

(AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Sen.-elect Angus King, (I) of Maine, the former governor of Maine, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2012, to discuss committee assignments.

Democrats in the US Senate increased their voting edge to 10 with a newly elected independent saying Wednesday he will align with them.

Senator-elect Angus King says he has decided to caucus with Democrats, ending months of speculation about which party he would vote with.

The former Maine governor was elected last week to replace retiring Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe, a prominent centrist. Republican and conservative groups spent millions of dollars to attack King during the campaign for Snowe's seat.

RECOMMENDED: 12 Reasons Obama won, and Romney lost

With King joining their caucus, Democrats will have a 55 to 45 edge when the new Senate takes office in January. The balance for the Democrats in the current Senate is 53-47. Republicans control the House of Representatives, meaning re-elected President Barack Obama will have to contend with a divided legislative branch.

King said Wednesday that caucusing with Democrats will still allow him to take independent positions on issues.

In the House, former speaker Nancy Pelosi said she will run to keep her job as Democratic leader there after a pair of elections that kept the party in the minority.

"My colleagues made it very clear: 'Don't even think of leaving,' "she said at a news conference surrounded by women lawmakers. " I have made a decision to submit my name to my colleagues to once again serve as the House Democratic leader. " She is certain to win.

Pelosi, 72, who has served in Congress for a quarter of a century representing a San Francisco district became the first woman speaker of the House but the conservative tea-party fueled political wave of 2010 forced her to turn over the gavel to Rep. John Boehner, an Ohio Republican.

Pelosi made the decision to remain at the helm of the party's House leadership even though Democrats failed to win the necessary 25 additional seats to become the majority party again. Democrats gained at most eight seats and Republicans will keep their majority.

Her Democratic colleagues have said for days that the top leadership post was hers if she wanted it in the next Congress, which convenes in January.

RECOMMENDED: 12 Reasons Obama won, and Romney lost

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.
Real news can be honest, hopeful, credible, constructive.
What is the Monitor difference? Tackling the tough headlines – with humanity. Listening to sources – with respect. Seeing the story that others are missing by reporting what so often gets overlooked: the values that connect us. That’s Monitor reporting – news that changes how you see the world.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to

QR Code to Angus King of Maine helps Senate tilt toward Democrats
Read this article in
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today