Barack Obama may have gone on to bigger and better things, but in his absence Democrats failed Tuesday to hold on to his old Senate seat in Illinois.
Mark Kirk captured the Senate seat that President Obama vacated in 2008, in a major symbolic victory for Republicans, defeating Democrat Alexi Gianoullias in a tight, nasty race, DPA reported.
The Illinois victory was part of a major landslide for Republicans Tuesday night in congressional elections. The conservative party swept into control of the House of Representatives, though it fell short of recapturing the Senate.
The Illinois Senate seat has had a chequered history ever since Obama moved in to the White House.
Former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich was charged by prosecutors with trying to sell the seat to the highest bidder, part of a slew of corruption charges he has faced in an ongoing criminal case.
Roland Burris, the Democrat picked by Blagojevich to replace Obama in 2009, decided not to run for the Senate seat in this election.