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Cook Political Report shifts seven House races toward Dems

Cook Political Report shifts seven House races toward Dems
© Greg Nash

The Cook Political Report has shifted seven House races toward the Democratic Party.

The nonpartisan elections analyst announced Wednesday it had updated the races in seven districts, all currently held by Republicans, to reflect "improved Democratic prospects" ahead of the November midterm elections.

Four of the seats were shifted from "solid" Republican to "likely" Republican, and the other three from "likely" Republican to "lean" Republican.

Cook moved the race for the Arizona House seat formerly held by Rep. Trent FranksHarold (Trent) Trent FranksArizona New Members 2019 Cook shifts 8 House races toward Dems Freedom Caucus members see openings in leadership MORE (R) — who resigned after reportedly discussing paying a staffer to act as a surrogate mother — shifted from "solid" to "lean" Republican.

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Also no longer considered "solid" by the election handicapper: GOP Reps. Jack Bergman (Mich.), David JoyceDavid JoycePorter urges increased budget for children's National Parks program Against mounting odds, Biden seeks GOP support for infrastructure plan Boehner finally calls it as he sees it MORE (Ohio) and Ralph NormanRalph Warren NormanLiz Cheney says McConnell, McCarthy are heads of GOP Female Republicans 'horrified' by male GOP lawmaker's description of Cheney: report Hillicon Valley: Tech companies duke it out at Senate hearing | Seven House Republicans vow to reject donations from Big Tech MORE (S.C.).

The three Republicans downgraded from "likely" to "lean" by Cook on Wednesday are Reps. French HillJames (French) French HillIn 'restoring America's soul,' Biden can become a hero for the persecuted Build back nuclear Republicans rally to keep Cheney in power MORE (Ariz.), Randy HultgrenRandall (Randy) Mark HultgrenRecord number of Black women elected to Congress in 2020 Republican challenging freshman Dem rep says he raised 0,000 in 6 days Illinois Dems offer bill to raise SALT deduction cap MORE (Ill.) and Tom GarrettThomas (Tom) Alexander GarrettInternal poll shows tight race in Virginia House race Internal poll shows neck-and-neck race brewing in Virginia House contest GOP congressman loses primary after officiating gay wedding MORE (Va.).

Cook now lists 179 House seats as "solid" for Democrats, compared to only 156 for Republicans. 

The rating changes come after the newest Federal Election Commission (FEC) reports show Democratic challengers out-raised Republicans in at least 60 GOP-held seats in the most recent cycle.

“Even before last week, Democratic donors had been demonstrating far more enthusiasm on a race-by-race basis, a fact reflected in the newest House fundraising reports. The newest FEC filings spell danger for Republicans, ” Cook election analyst David Wasserman wrote in a new blog post on Wednesday.

On top of the quarterly reports, 15 Republican incumbents had less cash on hand than their likely Democratic challengers, according to Open Secrets.

Democrats need a net gain of 23 seats in the midterms to retake the majority in the House. According to the RealClearPolitics average of polls, Democrats currently have a 5.5-point lead over Republicans in a generic congressional vote.

Ben Kamisar contributed.