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US Candidates Making Final Appeals to Midterm Voters


Democratic Sen. Joe Donnelly, left, shakes hands with Republican former state Rep. Mike Braun following a U.S. Senate debate in Indianapolis, Oct. 30, 2018.

U.S. congressional candidates and high-profile advocates are using their final full day of campaigning Monday to try to attract voters as the nation's major political parties battle for control of the Senate and House of Representatives in midterm elections.

President Donald Trump wants his fellow Republicans to hold their Senate and House majorities, while Democrats seek to take control of at least one of the chambers.

Political analysts and opinion poll results give the Democrats a better chance at winning back a majority in the House than in the Senate. Voters on Tuesday will choose who will fill all 435 seats in the House and 35 of the 100 Senate seats.

Trump has campaign events Monday in Ohio, where there is a tight contest for the state's governorship, and in Indiana and Missouri, where there are too-close-to-call elections for Senate seats.

U.S. President Donald Trump listens as Ohio gubernatorial nominee and Ohio Attorney General Mike Dewine speaks during a campaign rally in Cleveland, Ohio, Nov. 5, 2018.
U.S. President Donald Trump listens as Ohio gubernatorial nominee and Ohio Attorney General Mike Dewine speaks during a campaign rally in Cleveland, Ohio, Nov. 5, 2018.

Before heading out on the campaign trail, Trump assailed a new poll by news network CNN about which party voters intend to support in Tuesday's balloting. The survey showed voters favored Democrats over Republicans by a 55 percent to 42 percent margin. Other polls have shown Democrats with a smaller edge on the generic ballot question, in which specific candidates are not named.

"So funny to see the CNN Fake Suppression Polls and false rhetoric," Trump said on Twitter.

​He also warned about possible voter fraud.

"Law Enforcement has been strongly notified to watch closely for any ILLEGAL VOTING which may take place in Tuesday's Election," Trump said.

The Justice Department announced it is sending personnel to 35 jurisdictions in 19 of the country's 50 states to monitor compliance with voting laws.

Before traveling to rallies Sunday in Georgia and Tennessee, Trump expressed optimism about his party's prospects.

"I think we're going to do well in the House. But as you know, my primary focus has been on the Senate, and I think we're doing really well in the Senate," he said.

Trump told those at a rally in Georgia that voters have to decide whether to build on what he called the "extraordinary prosperity that we've created" or allow Democrats to "take a giant wrecking ball to our economy and to our future."

Former President Barack Obama campaigned Sunday in support of Democratic Senator Joe Donnelly in Indiana, telling the crowd there it was his administration that started the economic recovery after the severe recession that hit the country in 2008.

FILE - Former President Barack Obama, right, greets Democratic supporters at Genesis Convention Center in Gary, Ind., Nov. 4, 2018. Obama rallied Democrats on behalf of Senator Joe Donnelly.
FILE - Former President Barack Obama, right, greets Democratic supporters at Genesis Convention Center in Gary, Ind., Nov. 4, 2018. Obama rallied Democrats on behalf of Senator Joe Donnelly.

Obama accused the Republican-controlled Congress of trying to turn back the policies and progress made during his eight years in office. He also mocked Trump for saying he wants to help regular people after signing huge tax cuts for the wealthy.

At another campaign stop in Chicago, Obama talked more generally about Tuesday's vote, saying it might be the "most important election of our lifetimes."

"There is a contest of ideas going on right now, about who we are and what kind of country we are going to be. Healthcare for millions is on the ballot. A fair shake for working families is on the ballot. And most importantly the character of our nation is on the ballot," Obama said.

In addition to the congressional races, 36 of the 50 U.S. states are electing governors Tuesday. Currently there are 33 Republican governors, 16 Democrats and one independent.

Voters will also be asked to pick sides on a number of state ballot initiatives. Those include issues such as whether to legalize marijuana, allow felons to have their voting rights restored, expand Medicaid coverage, and determine what identification should be required to vote.

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