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Divided We Stand

Divided We Stand
New book about the 2020 election.

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Party Control of Legislatures

There are twice as many states that have solid, Republican-control legislatures as those with solid, Democratic-controlled ones, according to Quorum's new 2021 State Legislative Trends Report.

Why it matters: The power of state legislatures has been on national display in recent weeks, with Texas and other states passing voting and abortion restrictions and coronavirus-related laws, as well as redrawing election district boundaries for the next decade, writes Axios' Stef Kight.
  • Sixteen states have solid Republican control, compared to eight states with solid Democratic control.
  • Fourteen states have slight Republican control. Eleven states, plus Washington, D.C., have slight Democratic control.
  • Nebraska has the only unicameral legislature, and does not have any formal party alignments — although most members tend to affiliate with state political parties.

Between the lines: The data reveals how much more control Republicans have over state laws in the U.S., but it also shows which states could most easily be flipped.
  • Minnesota, Arizona, New Hampshire, Michigan and Virginia have the slimmest partisan advantages in their state legislatures. Minnesota has only a 3% Democratic advantage, and Virginia 16%.
  • Of the 10 slimmest-state legislature majorities, only three lean Democrat.
  • The rest lean Republican, potentially handing Democrats a shot at taking back legislature control in more states in upcoming elections.