Analysis: Can Democrats in the House lose 70 seats this fall?

Seventy seats! This will not only overshadow the Republican gain of 63 seats in the 2010 by-elections, but will be the largest change of seats in the 1948 House of Representatives.

Gingrich, as he often does, was probably just mistaken – he was looking for an incredibly high ceiling of Republican profits to attract headlines and attention.

Which, well, the mission is accomplished.

Gingrich’s 70-seat ceiling is much higher than that of non-partisan politicians – at least for now. David Wasserman, editor of The House Cook Political Report with Amy Walter, predicts Republicans will get between 20 and 35 seats. Nathan Gonzalez in internal elections he has not yet released his band – coming next week – but says: “Republicans are in a good position to win the majority.”

New Gallup data suggest that the national political environment may be worse for Democrats than in 2010, which at least increases the party’s chances of suffering even greater losses than currently projected.

“The president’s party usually loses seats in the US House of Representatives in the midterm elections – an average of 23 since 1974. However, 2022 does not look like a middle year. key national sentiment indicators well below historical averages measured over the past interim election years. All of these figures alone would predict a larger-than-average loss of seats for the Democratic Party this fall. “

One look at Gallup data – which looks at the president’s approval, congressional approval, satisfaction with the country’s direction and overall assessment of economic conditions – reveals that the environment measured in May looks much like the end of the 2010 cycle.



Biden’s approval: 41%

Congressional approval: 18%

satisfaction in the US: 16%

Economic conditions (net): -32


Obama approval: 45%

Congressional approval: 21%

satisfaction in the US: 22%

Economic conditions (net): -31

Pretty similar, right? If nothing else, the national political environment – as understood by these four factors – is worse for Democrats now than it was in 2010.

Now, before you join Gingrich’s 70-seat forecast, it’s worth thinking about:

a) The last two national reorientation processes (in 2011 and 2021) have generally created safer areas, which in practice will certainly elect a party member.

b) The 2020 election, in which Republicans won 12 seats in the House, is likely to limit the Republican Party’s profit ceiling, as some of the lower-hanging fruits have already been, um, selected.

To be very clear here: the Republican win of 70 seats in the fall still seems more like Gingrich’s dream of fever than a fact-based opportunity. But like Gallup concludes“The current Democratic majority in Congress is facing an extremely unfavorable electoral environment.”

The point: Democrats are in as bad a state as they were at the time of the by-elections, as they have been for many decades. And what’s worse for the party is that there is no obvious event or series of events that could (or will) turn things around.

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