Democrats looking to retain control of Congress saw another sign of mounting headwinds, with an updated election forecast predicting they could lose between 12 and 25 seats next month.
The prediction, by the Cook Political Reportcomes after Republican gains in generic polls, showing signs of high early vote turnout in some states, and as forecasters have moved more incumbent Democrats into tossup races.
That comes after signals that even Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (DN.Y.), who chairs the campaign arm of the House of Democrats, is fighting for his seat.
A gain of that magnitude would be enough to topple House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her Democratic majority and drastically change the political climate in Washington. Democrats currently hold a 220-212 majority in the House.
Democrats have continued to try to hammer Republicans on abortion issues after the Supreme Court overthrown Roe v. Wade this summer, and some Democratic candidates have found ways to distance themselves from the national brand in disputed territories.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy could speak if Republicans take control. He has put money into competitive races through an external super PAC
“In the red and purple states, many Democrats are still impressively ahead of President Biden’s ratings and remain in strong battle. Meanwhile, some of the Democrats’ biggest headaches are in blue states like New York, Oregon, Connecticut and even Rhode Island, where they’re scrambling desperately to save seats Biden comfortably wore in 2020,” election analyst Dave Wasserman wrote.
Many individual Democrats have a fundraising edge over their challengers, but groups aligned with the GOP have brought in money from outside. A lot of it goes to districts that Biden wore easily in 2020.
Facing the potential of a transformed ability to move legislation and a raft of investigations if Republicans take control, Biden is preparing to to pour $18 million to boost the two party committees.
That includes transferring $10 million to the two party committees and raising another $8 million in the coming weeks, CNN reported.
Rep. Abigail Spanberger faces a challenge from Republican Prince William County Supervisor Yesli Vega in suburban Virginia. Her race is now considered a tossup
Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY) fights for survival in a district north of New York City
The incumbent House Democrats who have carried the Biden agenda will need the help.
Virginia Democratic Representative Abigail Spanberger enters the “tossup” column, which will be challenged by Prince William County Supervisor Yesli Vega in suburban Biden who will be carried by 7 points in 2020.
The former CIA officer knocked out Republican Dave Bratt in 2018 but is now running in a redrawn district.
Things are breaking the Democrats’ way in Alaska, where Mary Peltola was victorious in a ranked voting race involving Sarah Palin as successor to the late Rep. Don Young.
Incumbent Senator Lisa Murkowski (R) said she votes for Peltola, and Palin had nice things to say about her. Palin and Republican Nick Begich are torn apart in the run to a second round. Cook now rates the race as ‘lean Democrat’ in favor of the new incumbent.
Republicans are using inflation and American concerns about the economy in their favor. Also boosting is House Minority leader Kevin McCarthy, who could become a speaker if Republicans take control. McCarthy has put money into competitive racing through his Congressional Leadership Fund super PAC, after immediately making peace with Donald Trump after Jan. 6.
Maloney takes on Mike Lawer, the Republican first-term councilman, in a redesigned district north of New York City.
The National Republican Congressional Committee and Congressional Leadership Fund, which is affiliated with House Minority leader Kevin McCarthy, crushed Maloney in the air and spent more than $3.5 million on Democratic groups to $384,000.
President Joe Biden predicted a reversal on Monday.
“You know, whether we keep control of the Senate and the House is a big problem, and so far we’re going against the grain, and we’re beating the tide,” he said at Democratic National Committee headquarters.
He said the polls were “all over the place,” adding, “Republicans ahead, Democrats ahead, Republicans ahead. But it’s going to end, I think, with one more shift: Democrats ahead.’