On Election Eve, 'the Race for the House Is Over'

Analysts say Republicans will keep control, but by a smaller margin
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 7, 2016 11:19 AM CST
On Election Eve, 'the Race for the House Is Over'
A bellwether race? Democratic challenger LuAnn Bennett, left, and incumbent Republican Rep. Barbara Comstock greet one another after a debate in northern Virginia.   (Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post via AP)

(Newser) – When Hillary Clinton was up big in the polls, Democrats entertained at least faint hopes of flipping the 30 seats that would be necessary for them to gain control of the House. And now, with the election upon us? "The race for the House is over: Republicans are going to keep it," Geoffrey Skelley of the University of Virginia’s Center for Politics tells Vox. "I can give you a probability on that prediction: There is zero chance Democrats win it." Democrats are still expected to chip away at the GOP majority, but an in-depth assessment at NPR concludes that winning 12 to 15 seats would be a "very good night" for them. That's down from 20 seats just two weeks ago, but the party's down-ballot hopes have taken a hit thanks in part to headlines about newly discovered Hillary Clinton emails and rising ObamaCare premiums.

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In fact, two respected independent analysts say it's quite possible that the Democratic gains could end up being in the single digits, notes the Washington Post. Meanwhile, some notable races in play:

  • In California, Republican firebrand Darrell Issa is in a tight race against Democratic challenger Doug Applegate, reports NBC San Diego.
  • In northern Virginia, freshman Republican Barbara Comstock is trying to fend off Democrat LuAnn Bennett. This is one of the most important bellwether races of the election, asserts NPR, given that Democrats have been aggressively linking Comstock, who needs the support of suburban women, to Donald Trump.
  • In Alaska, Don Young, the longest-serving Republican in the House, is in danger of losing to Democrat Steve Lindbeck, reports ABC News.
  • In Wyoming, Liz Cheney is expected to win the seat once occupied by her father, Dick.
  • In Florida, former Gov. Charlie Crist, a Democrat, has a decent chance of unseating Republican David Jolly.
(Read more Election 2016 stories.)

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