With a little more than 250 campaigning days left before
election day, a quick snapshot of the current state of play in the
House and the Senate races is in order. In the House all 435 seats
will be on the ballot, and in the Senate 33 statewide races will be
held. Democrats need to pick up a net total of 25 seats in the
House to claim the majority, and must prevent the Republicans from
picking up 4 seats, and the majority, in the Senate.
Key Bailey Hutchinson
With three retirements over the past month, the 2012 Senate
landscape is quickly taking shape. So far, it's been somewhat
welcome news for Republicans aiming to take back the Senate
majority next year. Democrats must defend 23 seats, 10 of which are
currently considered competitive, while Republicans must defend 10
seats, only 2 of which are currently considered competitive.
House Member vs. Member
Before the once-every-ten-years Congressional redistricting
process began, several commentators had suggested redistricting
would produce large Republican gains that would ensure one-party
domination for the next decade. However, with the process largely
completed, most observers now believe that redistricting will be a
"wash" that will not produce significant net gains for
Three of the 21 House Democratic retirements had their seats
eliminated by redistricting, leaving Democrats to defend 18 open
seats, while the GOP will try to hold onto 14 open seats. The
Cook Political Report's Partisan Voter Index indicated
that the GOP has a credible advantage in 4 of the Democrats' 18
open seats and loses the upper hand in one.
Party Breakdown of Seats Currently Seen as Competitive (Lean or
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