Democratic hopes of capturing the House next Tuesday are long gone. And Democrats now could wind up actually losing seats.
David Wasserman, the Cook Political Report’s expert on House races, changed his rating of 15 contested House races, 11 of them to the benefit of Republicans. For example, Republican Bob Dold, supposedly doomed because his affluent district north of Chicago was badly gerrymandered, now is in a tossup race.
Wasserman counts six Republican seats as lean or likely Democratic and nine Democratic seats as lean or likely Republican. And “if the 28 races in our Toss Up column were to divide evenly between the parties, Democrats would score a net gain of a single seat in the House,” Wasserman concluded.
This is especially bad news for House minority leader Nancy Pelosi. Unless Democratic candidates do far better than Wasserman projects, she may be forced to give up her leadership post. There’s already speculation in Washington than she may retire.
In Ohio, two incumbents – Republican Jim Renacci and Democrat Betty Sutton – face each other in a merged district. Wasserman has changed their race from tossup to lean Republican.