Republicans are strongly favored to take over the US House due to a favorable political environment and the effects of the redistricting process, but there is still considerable uncertainty about how election night will play out – whether the Republicans will win in a landslide, if they narrowly win, or if Democrats defy the odds and retain control of the House.
Here are the races of Dave Wasserman The Cook Political Report suggests watching the polls close on Tuesday for an indication of how the night is going.
VA-02: Elaine Luria vs. Jen Kiggins
Ms. Luria was first elected to Congress in the 2018 Democratic wave, but faces a tough challenge from Republican Jen Kiggins in a district that has become slightly more Republican in the redistricting. Ms. Luria has spent much of her campaign highlighting her pro-democracy work in Congress; if she retains her seat, it could be an indication that Democrats have a chance to retain control of the House or significantly limit their losses.
VA-07: Abigail Spanberger vs. Yesli Vega
Like her colleague Ms. Luria, the moderate Ms. Spanberger was first elected to her seat in suburban Washington, D.C. in the 2018 wave. Her race against Yesli Vega, an ultra-conservative Prince William County commissioner , expected to be competitive: Ms. Spanberger was only narrowly re-elected in 2020, and she is running in a district that is mostly new after redistricting. If Ms. Vega wins, Republicans will likely easily win the House.
VA-10: Jennifer Wexton vs. Hung Cao
Of Virginia’s three flagship races, it’s the one Democrats feel most confident about. Ms. Wexton, another two-term holder, takes on retired US Navy Captain Hung Cao in a Democratic-leaning district. If Mr. Cao is the winner, it would likely signal the start of a red wave.
IN-01: Frank Mrvan vs. Jennifer-Ruth Green
Indiana’s First Congressional District, centered around the majority-black town of Gary, has long been a Democratic stronghold. The seat was held for decades by Pete Visclosky, who retired after the conclusion of the last Congress and was replaced by Mr. Mrvan. Now Mr. Mrvan faces an uphill fight for re-election against Jennifer-Ruth Green, a black and Asian pilot who attacked Mr. Mrvan for serving the interests of “rich white people”. If Ms. Green wins, it will likely mean the Republicans are on for a big night.
NH-02: Ann Kuster vs. Robert Burns
Veteran Democratic Rep. Ann Kuster’s district covers much of the northern and western part of Granite State. Ms Kuster has been re-elected to that seat by more than 10 points in the past two cycles, but may face a tougher challenge this time around from Republican Robert Burns. It’s a seat Democrats would expect to take on a competitive night — the other New Hampshire seat held by Democrat Chris Pappas is expected to be closer.
Other Races to Watch
Several other races will go a long way in determining which party controls the House and to what extent. Three of those few in South Texas, in a state that tends to count its votes quickly, where veterans, conservative Democratic Representatives Henry Cuellar and Vicente Gonzalez are seeking re-election in a blushing region that Democrats in the State believe that the national party has neglected . Michelle Vallejo, a progressive Democrat, is also running for a competitive open seat against Republican Monica De La Cruz.
There are several top Democrats whose seats appear to be in jeopardy, and perhaps no top Democrat is more in jeopardy than Sean Patrick Maloney – the Democratic campaign leader who spent lavishly on his own re-election bid against Republican Michael Lawler.
Mr Maloney, who angered progressive Democrats over the summer when he decided to run in a redesigned district that is currently largely represented by Representative Mondaire Jones, is the campaign committee’s second consecutive chairman. Congressman to face a surprisingly tough re-election fight after Rep. Cheri Bustos of Illinois in 2020. Ms. Bustos is retiring at the end of her current term.
By the time polls close on the West Coast, the overall direction of the race will likely become clearer. Republicans are hoping to win seats in the traditionally Democratic territory of Oregon and California, although the final results of the close races in those states are unlikely to be known on election night.