Republicans Give Access, Democrats Hunker Down for Election Night

Democrats will watch results in private; Republicans celebration to be muted.

ByABC News
November 1, 2010, 7:26 PM

Nov. 2, 2010 -- Judging by the ground rules established by the political parties concerning how the Washington press corps covers today's election-related events inside the Beltway, Democrats are probably preparing for a tough night, while Republicans are gearing up for what could be an historic election.

House Democrats and Republicans are each holding various press events today, but Democrats have been careful to control media access on election night, in anticipation of a vote count that analysts have predicted will result in a tumultuous evening for the Democratic Party.

Tune In: Vote 2010 Election Results, Live Stream, Exit Polls at 7pm ET

That's in stark contrast to the celebration kicked off when then-House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and House Democrats won control in the 2006 midterms and celebrated their victory in front of a throng of media and supporters.

In 2006, Democrats rode waves of anti-Bush and anti-war sentiment to the polls, picking up 30 seats in the House and six more in the Senate. For the first time in United States history, no Republican captured any House, Senate, or Gubernatorial seat that was previously held by a Democrat.

ABC News Election Map: Results, Projections and Balance of Power

"Today the American people voted for change, and they voted for Democrats to take our country in a new direction," Pelosi said after Democrats won big in 2006. "The American people voted to restore integrity and honesty in Washington, D.C. and the Democrats intend to lead the most honest, most open and most ethical Congress in history."

But that was then, and this is now. When the wall-to-wall media coverage drags on into the late hours of the evening and into the early morning, Democrats will be noticeably muted as the election results are realized.