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[RD] US Senate - 2018

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by onejayhawk, Nov 25, 2016.

  1. onejayhawk

    onejayhawk Afflicted with reason

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    With the recent presidential election still slightly warm, we turn to the next major contest, the 2018 Senate election. Here is the wiki map


    Democratic incumbent - Dark Blue
    Undetermined Democrat - Light Blue
    Independent incumbent - Yellow
    Republican incumbent - Bright red
    Undetermined Republican - Dark Red
    No election - Grey

    Midterm elections are notoriously hard on the President's party, ie Republican. In this case, the map favors them significantly. Only Nevada voted for Hillary Clinton. Democrats have several seats in traditionally red states to defend, plus five more in Trump pick-ups: FL, OH, MI, WI, PA.

    J
     
  2. onejayhawk

    onejayhawk Afflicted with reason

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    Sabato and UVa have an article on the 2018 race. It reiterates several of the points in the OP. One thing I was not aware was that the Democrat's exposure is at near record level. See chart.
    http://www.centerforpolitics.org/crystalball/articles/2018-senate-democrats-are-very-exposed/



    Concerning changes in the next two years, several "red" states have both Democratic Senators and Governors--MN, MT, MO, PA, VA, WV. If the sitting Democrat decides to retire early, their Governor will be able to appoint the same party to warm the seat.

    Also in the article:

    Sens. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) both have been mentioned as possible Cabinet appointees in the incoming Trump Administration... If Manchin left his seat, incoming Gov. Jim Justice (D-WV) would presumably appoint a Democrat to replace him, but appointed senators often don’t have much of an advantage if they run for reelection, and Manchin may be the only Democrat capable of holding a Senate seat in the reddening Mountain State (Trump won it by almost 42 points, the biggest presidential margin of victory in the state’s history).​

    J
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2016
  3. AdrienIer

    AdrienIer Chieftain

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    Why do you call MN PA and VA red states ? They're purple states.
     
  4. JollyRoger

    JollyRoger Slippin' Jimmy Supporter

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    In fact, Minnesota has gone Democrat in the last 11 Presidential elections, Virginia the last 3, and Pennsylvania 6 of the last 7.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2016
  5. AdrienIer

    AdrienIer Chieftain

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    Out of the last 7 senate races in MN the democrats won 6 times (including the last 4). In Virginia and Pennsylvania it's more complicated for democrats but really you can't say that republicans start with an advantage there.
     
  6. Gucumatz

    Gucumatz JS, secretly Rod Serling

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    Even if Trump does exceedingly awful in his first 2 years, I would be surprised if the Senate moves much at all. There really aren't many seats up for Democrats to pick up and assuming lower Democratic turnout in 2 years because of the history of a lack of turning out in midterms, my immediate guess is that the Senate race will end up being a +0 pickup (1 loss + 1 gain) as I still expect Trump to be a failure but the map is relatively immune to whatever Trump does
     
  7. onejayhawk

    onejayhawk Afflicted with reason

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    Minnesota is a stretch, so I will give up that one. I used it because Johnson cost Trump the state, compared to 2012 Libertarian numbers.

    Purple is an interesting concept. Does it mean Senators from different parties? Does it mean a Senator whose party is different than the state's Presidential vote? Should the vote be normalized? How does that work? What about history? By all of those standards, many states are purple. By any count, most of the purple states have Democratic incumbents. Nevada is the only clear exception.

    The issue is not how many the Democrats will gain but how many they will lose. Having Trump in the oval office is a big plus for the Democrats, but their exposure is at historic levels, especially if you count the two independents. The map is emphatically not immune to what Trump does. If you figure the Democrats win 60% the red states and 80% of the purple, they still come up -2 to -3. If Trump is as good as mediocre, the Democrats could be hurt badly.

    J
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2016
  8. AdrienIer

    AdrienIer Chieftain

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    Let me try to give a good possible definition of purple state (in the context of senate elections).
    A purple state is a state where the difference between the number of "will vote for democrat candidate no matter what" and "will vote for republican candidate no matter what" people is not large enough to usually ensure the victory for one party unless they field a particularly terrible candidate (or the other party fields a very strong one). You can expect that a democrat will win the senate race in Connecticut, just like you can expect the republicans to win the remaining Louisiana seat from this cycle. Among the seats you mentioned only MT WV and MO are red states (I would add IN).

    Basically a purple state is a state where you don't have one party winning most elections, and where both parties can truly have hopes every 2/4 years.
     
  9. onejayhawk

    onejayhawk Afflicted with reason

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    That's not a practical definition. You cannot tell easily if a state is Red, Blue or Purple just by looking at numbers. If both Senators, the Governor and the Presidential vote is for one party, then that party owns the state. If the four are split two/two, then the state it is purple. The question lies in the remaining states.

    J
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2016
  10. AdrienIer

    AdrienIer Chieftain

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    Well some state are difficult to place almost regardless of definition. For example is Iowa red or purple ? They have two republican senators and have voted Trump with a big margin, but Obama won it twice.
    Same thing for MN. There are good arguments to put it in the blue column and in the purple column.

    The difference is also in who you're talking to. A democrat prior to this election would have told you that Pennsylvania was blue, while republicans have been considering it as purple for a while.


    In 2018 democrats have 1 seat they can compete for (Nevada) and one they could try to make interesting (Arizona). On the other hand they have to defend 5 seats in red states, and quite a few in battleground states where republicans can legitimately compete. But the map isn't that much better in 2020, with only Colorado Maine NC and Iowa for the democrats to compete for (plus maybe Georgia if the demographics keep shifting). 2016 was really a disaster for them in the senate. Florida Pennsylvania NC and Wisconsin should have been flipped if they wanted control of the senate before 2022.
     
  11. JollyRoger

    JollyRoger Slippin' Jimmy Supporter

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    Then you seem to be mixing up red and blue and red and purple under your own criteria. Give us Minnesota? It is crazy talk to call Minnesota red.
     
  12. onejayhawk

    onejayhawk Afflicted with reason

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    No, not red. I called it purple but will not insist. Feel free to claim it as a blue state.

    Nice summary.

    As always, open seats are easiest to win. For the most part, age will not be an obvious factor. There is some real age--Orin Hatch 82, Dianne Feinstein 85--but the seats are safe for the party. In potentially competitive seats, Nelson (D-FL) will be 76, King (I-Me) will be 74. Several others, both parties, are well into their 60s.

    J
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2016
  13. Gucumatz

    Gucumatz JS, secretly Rod Serling

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    Overall it is a pretty awful looking map for Dems over the next 4 years for sure
     
  14. onejayhawk

    onejayhawk Afflicted with reason

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  15. Bootstoots

    Bootstoots Warlord Super Moderator

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    I'll go out on a limb and predict that the Dems lose four out of the following five seats: IN, MO, WV, ND, MT. Then they lose one out of these: PA, OH, FL, WI. They also pick up NV and lose nothing else. Net result -4, Senate moves to 56-44 R, counting King and Sanders as Dems. Also, while I'm at it: Dems do pick up a small number of House seats, but it's totally inconsequential. The Dems also pick up a few governor's mansions and a few state legislatures.
     
  16. onejayhawk

    onejayhawk Afflicted with reason

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  17. dutchfire

    dutchfire Moderator Moderator

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    Michigan.
    The GOP has won the last two Governor elections, the last Presidential election, the House elections since 2010 (in 2014 they got most seats but lost the popular vote). They control both chambers of the state legislature. Democrats still control both Senate seats and Obama won twice.

    Democrats will have the incumbency advantage, on the other hand the GOP-controlled state government will likely introduce voting access shenanigans.
     
  18. onejayhawk

    onejayhawk Afflicted with reason

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    This is pretty normal for purple states.

    J
     
  19. Bootstoots

    Bootstoots Warlord Super Moderator

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    Voting access shenanigans have some impact, but it's no more than a couple of percentage points. It might be reasonable to put Michigan on my list of states that could flip but I'd put the odds of that below the others. The Dem Senate candidate won by 13 percentage points in 2014, a year when they lost 9 seats. I don't know much about Debbie Stabenow in particular, though.
     
  20. onejayhawk

    onejayhawk Afflicted with reason

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    I would rank the four--Wisconsin, Ohio, Florida, Michigan. The odds that the Republicans get at least one are pretty solid. This is before the next round of retirements. Open seats have an incumbent advantage, but it's much smaller.

    Stabenow is one of the more solidly placed Democrats. She has a senior place in the Ag committee (don't tell Farmboy). She's very pro-choice, strongly supports union is education, is stoutly gun control, and definitely one of the Doves. In other areas, she's more moderate--trade, energy, environment. One thing to watch is her health care voting. ACA will be under fire this year and she was one of the party-liners in the passage of the bill. Here's the voting record:
    http://www.ontheissues.org/Senate/Debbie_Stabenow.htm

    J
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2017

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