Politics

How Many Votes Do the Democrats Need to Retake the House? Maybe Less Than You Think

[The Washington Post]

pelosi

In the wake of the government shutdown and declining Republican popularity, Democrats are growing more optimistic about winning a majority in the House of Representatives in 2014.   Several recent polls show Democrats leading the “generic ballot” for Congress by eight or nine points.  Yet they still face an uphill battle; in 2012, Democrats won a majority of the congressional popular vote but a minority of seats, due to district maps biased against them through both partisan gerrymandering and asymmetric population distributions.   But just how steep is this hill?  How big of a national majority would Democrats need to win that 218th seat?

David Wasserman of the Cook Political Report estimates that it would take a 6.8 percent lead in the national vote for Democrats to win control.  And if ranked by vote share, the Republican candidate won the 218th seat by a similar amount (6.3 percent) in 2012.  But the 2014 electoral landscape might not mirror the 2012 congressional results, when Democrats concentrated so much more of their campaign efforts on retaining the Presidency and Senate.  If the House appears more competitive at a national level in 2014, it is likely that Democrats will field higher-quality candidates and devote more resources to these new swing seats.

Under two alternate methods, I estimate that Democrats could win the House with an even smaller lead in the generic ballot — a lead closer to 5 percent.  But there is still much uncertainty as to how much the bias from a previous cycle will carry over into future elections.

In 2012, Barack Obama was reelected with a 3.9 percent margin of the national popular vote, yet won only 209 of the nation’s 435 congressional districts. To have won a majority of districts, Obama would have needed to win nine more.  So one way to quantify any GOP bias in the congressional landscape is to ask: “How much more would Obama need to have won by in order to win nine more districts?”

READ MORE

Tags
Show More

Related Articles

Back to top button

My News Matters to me - Washington Informer Donations

Be a Part of The Washington Informer Legacy

A donation of your choice empowers our journalists to continue the work to better inform, educate and empower you through technology and resources that you use.

Click Here Today to Support Black Press and be a part of the Legacy!

Subscribe today for free and be the first to have news and information delivered directly to your inbox.

Select list(s) to subscribe to


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Washington Informer Newspaper, 3117 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave SE, Washington, DC, 20032, http://www.washingtoninformer.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact
Close

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker