More Blacks Elected in Southeast
THE Southeast accounted for 28 percent of the votes cast in the presidential election. The 12-state region includes Oklahoma, Arkansas, Tennessee, and nine coastal states from Texas to Virginia.
George Bush dominated here, winning the electoral votes of eight states and 43 percent of the region's combined popular vote. Those popular votes accounted for 1 in 3 of his national total, indicating that it was weakness outside the Southeast that brought his national share down to a second-place 38 percent.
The Southeast contributed only 1 vote in 4 to the national total of Bill Clinton and Ross Perot. Governor Clinton obtained almost as big a share - 41 percent - within the region as President Bush.
That aided the Democrat in winning 43 percent of the national share. Mr. Perot got just 16 percent of the Southeast's vote but did relatively better outside the region, raising his national share to 19 percent.
The Southeast will send 131 members to the reapportioned House of Representatives. Among the incumbents will be 34 Republicans and 61 Democrats. Freshmen include 15 Republicans and 21 Democrats.
Florida, South Carolina, and Virginia are sending their first black representatives to Congress since Reconstruction. Florida elected Alcee Hastings, Carrie Meek, and Corrine Brown, all Democrats. South Carolina elected Democrat Jim Clyburn. Virginia elected Robert Scott (D).
GEORGIA, which has had only two African-Americans in Congress since Reconstruction, will be sending three, including Cynthia McKinney (D), its first black congresswoman. Eva Clayton (D) will be North Carolina's first black congresswoman.
Leslie Byrne (D) will be Virginia's first woman in the House.
Georgia reelected Newt Gingrich, the GOP whip. He is joined by three more Republicans, creating the party's biggest delegation from the state this century.
Two of the region's six House members who had been named "abusers" by the House Ethics Committee in the check-bouncing scandal were reelected anyway: Ronald Coleman (D) of Texas and Harold Ford (D) of Tennessee. One congressman retired and three were defeated in primaries. Two other Texas Democrats were cited for bounced checks at the House bank - 10-term incumbent Charles Wilson, who was re-elected, and Albert Bustamante, defeated by Henry Bonilla.
In the Senate, North Carolina incumbent Democrat Terry Sanford lost to Lauch Faircloth. Wyche Fowler Jr. (D) of Georgia faces a runoff. Incumbents Dale Bumpers (D) of Arkansas, Bob Graham (D) of Florida, John Breaux (D) of Louisiana, Don Nickles (R) of Oklahoma, and Ernest Hollings (D) of South Carolina were returned to the Senate.
Democrat Jim Hunt won a third term as North Carolina's governor eight years after his second term ended. In Texas, Barry Williamson won a seat on the Railroad Commission, which regulates the state's energy and transportation industries. He defeated Democrat Lena Guerrero, who had been appointed to the office by Gov. Ann Richards (D) but resigned when it was learned she had lied about having a college degree and belonging to the Phi Beta Kappa society.