Republicans are well-positioned to take back the House of Representatives in the 2022 midterms, according to an analysis released Thursday by a top elections forecaster.
As part of redistricting efforts, state legislatures and independent commissions have drawn new boundaries for 279 House seats. While many of those seats have been redrawn to be safe for one political party, the Cook Political Report identified 47 competitive seats that will help decide control of the lower chamber. Eighteen states, including two of the four largest, New York and Florida, have yet to confirm their new district maps, meaning that the numbers could shift slightly.
NEW: @CookPolitical‘s 2022 House ratings for new districts, now that we’re past the halfway point of redistricting. Still a long way to go, but Republicans clear favorites for control. https://t.co/mAdCOtLpRZ pic.twitter.com/2VN5sKWCzd
— Dave Wasserman (@Redistrict) December 30, 2021
Of the 47 competitive seats, Democrats will be forced to defend eight toss-ups, while Republicans will defend only six, Cook found. In addition, five currently Democrat-held seats are considered likely or leaning Republican, compared to only one currently Republican-held seat that is likely or leaning Democrat. Cook Political Report editor Dave Wasserman also noted two other House seats that will move from safely Democratic to safely Republican. (RELATED: Democratic Rep. Lucy McBath Moves Districts In Response To New Georgia State Map, Setting Up Brutal Primary Fight)
Several maps are likely to be subject to lawsuits, with the Department of Justice already targeting the state of Texas for a redistricting result that it claims illegally groups too many black and Latino voters together. Fair Maps Maryland, a nonpartisan anti-gerrymandering group, has filed a lawsuit against the state for a map that could create an 8-0 Democrat advantage. Several other maps, including those passed by Georgia and North Carolina legislatures, could also be thrown out by courts.
In addition to the GOP’s redistricting advantages, voters appear to have soured on Democratic leadership. Several polls conducted in November found that voters strongly prefer generic Republican congressional candidates to generic Democratic ones. Others found that Americans blame President Joe Biden for the country’s continuing division, and believe that he is not concerned enough with economic inflation.