Republicans held onto their slim Senate majority Wednesday, a stinging blow to Democrats in a night full of them. Democrats had been nearly certain of retaking control but saw their hopes fizzle as endangered GOP incumbents won in Missouri, Indiana, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and even Democrat-friendly Wisconsin.

GOP-held New Hampshire remained too close to call in the early morning hours Wednesday, but even if Democrats eked out a win there it would not make a difference.

Republicans started the night with a 54-46 majority in the Senate and were on track to end up with at least 52 seats, presuming they win a December runoff in Louisiana, as expected.

The outcome added to a debacle of a night for Democrats, who lost the presidency and faced being consigned to minority status on Capitol Hill for years to come.

Republicans celebrated their wins, already looking ahead to midterms in 2018 when Democrats could see their numbers reduced even further with a group of red-state Senate Democrats on the ballot.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, who will serve in that role next year under a President Trump, issued a statement congratulating the president-elect.

“After eight years of the Obama administration, the American people have chosen a new direction for our nation. President-elect Trump has a significant opportunity to bring our nation together,” McConnell said. “It is my hope and intent that we succeed in the years ahead by working together with our colleagues across the aisle to strengthen our national and economic security.”

Source: http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_2016_ELECTION_SENATE?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2016-11-09-02-05-01