Cook Political shifts House ratings in 10 races, most in Democrats’ favor

The Cook Political Report on Wednesday changed the ratings of 10 House races, with seven shifting in Democrats’ favor and three moving toward Republicans. 

Dave Wasserman, the nonpartisan election handicapper’s House editor, shifted two races — Michigan’s 8th Congressional District and Nevada’s 4th Congressional District — from “toss-up” to “lean Democratic” and Pennsylvania’s 7th Congressional District from “lean Republican” to “toss-up.”

California’s 9th Congressional District and Illinois’s 6th Congressional District went from “lean Democratic” to “likely Democratic,” while Florida’s 27th Congressional District and Iowa’s 1st Congressional District stayed in the Republican column but went from “likely Republican” to “lean Republican.”

“Historically, it’s rare that so many race ratings shift toward the president’s party in a midterm year,” Wasserman wrote. “But, keep in mind: because of redistricting, we didn’t issue initial ratings for most seats until President Biden and Democrats were at something of a low point. Now that we’ve seen marginal improvement in Biden’s approval and an uptick in Democrats’ enthusiasm, it makes sense their outlook looks brighter in a few races.”

In moving the races toward Democrats, the Cook Political Report cited competitive fundraising by Democratic candidates in some races, where Republican outside groups were and were not spending their money and rampant advertising against Republican challengers. 

Meanwhile, the House race in Florida’s 7th Congressional District went from “likely Republican to “solid Republican” and Texas’s 15th District went from “lean Republican to “likely Republican.” Texas’s 34th Congressional District moved from “lean Democrat” to “toss up.”

Wasserman said he shifted Florida’s 7th Congressional District to “solid Republican” after the party was able to avoid electing a far-right candidate in the primary and because the Democratic candidate, Karen Green, “simply hasn’t put together a serious campaign.”

The House editor said he shifted Texas’s 15th Congressional District because the House Democrats’ campaign arm has shifted money away from the race and the state’s 34th Congressional District was moved to “toss-up” because of the “rapid erosion in Democrats’ support” in the area.

Wasserman said he still expected Republicans would win the House, but believes the party would likely only pick up between five and 20 House seats. 

Tags 2022 midterm elections House races

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