DDHQ 2018 House Updates – September 22, 2017

Welcome to our daily DDHQ House Elections Updates. I’m your host, G. Elliott Morris. Questions, comments, concerns? Feel free to pass along via email or twitter. There are 410 days until the 2018 midterm elections. Democrats are up in the generic ballot by 7.6% and we rate 196 seats as Safe, Likely or Lean Democratic, 12 as Tossup, and 227 as Safe, Likely, or Lean Republican. Check our full U.S. House forecast here and read our full list of ratings here

Here’s what happened in elections to the U.S. House on Thursday, September 21, 2017.

At Home


WA-08: Former candidate for statewide office Dino Rossi has become the tenth candidate and only Republican to run for this tossup congressional district. WA-08 is being vacated by Dave Reichert (R) who, after serving in the House since 2005, had one of the largest incumbency advantages in the nation. Although Reichert won his seat by roughly 20 percentage points, the district voted for Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump by little more than a hair. Washington’s eighth district has elected a Republican since it’s addition to the House map in 1983, but has voted for Democratic Presidents since Bill Clinton ran for office in 1992. Now that the seat is open Democrats have a lot of hope to capture the seat, and that enthusiasm is reflected in their large ten-member bench for the nomination there. But Rossi is a major entry: while remembered for his narrow Gubernatorial loss in 2004 and wider ones in a 2008 rematch and 2010 run for Senate, he ran strongly in the district all three times.


CA-49: Politico reports that former policy adviser for Hillary for America Sarah Jacobs is eyeing a bid for this district held by Republican Rep. Darrell Issa (and currently rated lean Democratic). If the rumors are true, Jacobs would join a well-established field in a contest that is almost certain to be neck-and-neck in the coming cycle. Rep. Issa has the distinction of being the second richest member of Congress (unseated as the leader recently by MT-AL’s Greg Gianforte), which could come in handy as he is certain to face an avalanche of attack ads. Unfortunately for Jacobs and Democrats, California has a top-two primary system. If Jacobs and former candidate Douglas Applegate (or Mark Levin) draw too many votes from each other, it’s possible (though certainly not likely) that a second Republican or well known third party candidate could face Issa in the runoff.


IN-09: Candidate Todd Curtis, who is well known for owning every Nintendo game every made, dropped out of his Democratic primary bid on Thursday. Daily Kos Elections quips “at least he won’t be bored,” which is likely correct, though loading up a copy of Pokemon may be more fulfilling than trying to flip this Likely Republican district. Still, Democrats retain a healthy number of candidates in long-shot IN-09.


In the Beltway



  • Michigan Republicans depart on Friday for a weekend leadership conference. In the past, these conferences have helped launch state and national campaigns, but WOOD TV in Grand Rapids, MI says the event will be largely focused on the President’s impact on vulnerable state house and senate seats.
  • Don’t count on any Texas Republicans surprise retiring from the House next year, the Texas Tribune reports.


Data roundup

House Election

According to the latest House data

  • Democrats are up 7.7% in the national congressional generic ballot
  • They have a slightly better than 1:3 shot at winning a House majority
  • 50 Republican and 4 Democratic seats are within the margin of error in our forecast.


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