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Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Monday, October 1, 2018

Blue Skies Ahead

In Defying the Odds, we discuss state and congressional elections as well as the presidential race

Rachel Bitecofer at the Wason Center:
The House ratings update you’ve been waiting anxiously for is finally here! Again, what distinguishes my forecast from others is that it produced a 42 seat pick up back on July 1. So what we mostly see in this update, and the ones that will follow it, is the solidification of which seats will flip over to the Democrats on November 6th. If you have not already done so, please go back and read the original post of my House forecast, which explains my methodology, which is different than the methods used by my friends over at Crystal Ball, RealClearPolitics, Inside Elections, Cook Political Report, and FiveThirtyEight. It also introduces you to a new theory of voting behavior, which argues that the fate of House Republicans was sealed back on November 9th 2016 when Donald Trump became the unlikely winner of the Electoral College, and thus the presidency. That win cemented a big enthusiasm gap in favor of Democrats at least through 2020 due to something called negative partisanship, which argues that in the polarized era, people’s hatred or fear of the “other party” is a major factor driving partisan turnout in midterms and off-year or special elections. The party locked out of power experiences a turnout surge and produces a wave election that favors their own candidates. In the House this means Democrats are all but guaranteed to take over control of the House and will most likely hold onto most of the “Trump state” Senate seats as well as be competitive in states normally out of reach for them such as Texas senate and Georgia governor, both of which are now being recognized by other outlets as competitive races.
Elena Schneider at Politico:
Hundreds of thousands of online donors are pouring gobs of cash into Democratic House campaigns at an accelerating clip — a bulwark against a late-summer advertising assault that Republicans hope could save their majority.
Republicans have long seen their outside-money advantage as a key factor in the battle for the House, with Congressional Leadership Fund pledging to spend a massive $100 million in 2018. The super PAC’s plan is to attack Democrats early and often, and it unleashed a salvo of TV attack ads in 15 districts before Labor Day, seeking to disqualify Democrats before the fall campaign even heated up.

But the gush of online money to Democratic candidates has allowed them to hit the airwaves themselves earlier than ever, blunting the GOP’s game plan. Democrats in nearly 20 districts aired TV ads first to define themselves before facing GOP attacks, according to a review of TV spending totals shared with POLITICO. In another seven districts, CLF went on offense first.
That sustained cash flow has extended Democrats’ already formidable edge in the fight for control of the House. Democratic House candidates raised more than $35.8 million online in August, according to a POLITICO analysis of Federal Election Commission data from ActBlue, the Democratic online fundraising platform. That’s up nearly sixfold from House Democrats’ online total of $6.2 million in August 2016, during the last election.