The Senate race between Republican incumbent Ted Cruz and Democratic Congressman Beto O’Rourke was one of the most riveting races decided on Tuesday night’s midterm. O’Rourke came within 3 percentage points of beating Cruz in a state previously thought of as firmly Republican, as The New York Times reports. Because of O’Rourke’s surprising momentum, the nail-biter of a race had people on the edge of their seats and left many devastated at his loss.
BETO PUT SO MUCH EFFORT INTO HIS CAMPAIGN AND SHOWED HOW MICH HE CARED FOR THE PEOPLE HES SUCH A GOOD PERSON WHY DID HE HAVE TO LOSE pic.twitter.com/sghVh3Oula
— Isabelle De Leon (@IsabelleDeLeo12) November 7, 2018
In addition to wallowing in their love for O’Rourke, some supporters expressed their disappointment that O’Rourke lost to Ted Cruz specifically.
Y’all really let Beto lose to this man?♂️ pic.twitter.com/j6BXhEMvia
— Jerry (@Jerry_sosuh) November 7, 2018
Some people, on the other hand, channeled their love for O’Rourke into hopes that he would one day run for president in 2020.
Y’all it’s okay @BetoORourke didn’t win Texas, that boy needs to start preparing for his presidential race
— Zach Adkins (@zachmadkins) November 7, 2018
For Republican supporters, however, the night had a much different tone to it. Excited at the prospect of Cruz retaining his Senate seat and the uphill battles now facing gubenatorial candidates Stacey Abrams (GA) and Andrew Gillum (FL), some conservatives saw O’Rourke’s loss as part of a larger liberal failure.
I cannot express how thrilling it is that Beto, Abrams and Gillum did not win. A mega middle finger to Hollywood.
— Carmine Sabia (@CarmineSabia) November 7, 2018
In the aftermath of such a close emotional race, it’s easy to get caught up in emotion. A common sentiment, particularly from political commentators such as Pod Save America host Dan Pfeiffer, was that Beto O’Rourke’s campaign while technically unsuccessful was significant in the mobilization and momentum it created.
Beto is a generational political talent who built a grassroots movement. Every Democrat can learn a lot from how he ran his race with authenticity and without fear.
I hope we haven’t heard the last of him. https://t.co/oafrW9An5i
— Dan Pfeiffer (@danpfeiffer) November 7, 2018
Senator or not, it seems that for many (especially on the Internet) Beto O’Rourke is already winner.