Although Democrats are in little danger of losing their majority in the House, there are several close elections in critical districts which could indicate which way the presidential race will swing. Here’s a rundown of some key House districts that may flip in this election:
California’s 21st Congressional District
Many of the most vulnerable members of the House are freshmen Democrats who flipped longtime Republican districts in 2018. One such Democrat is TJ Cox, who is facing off against David Valadao in a closely-watched rematch. In 2018, Cox defeated Valadao by less than 1 point. Cox was one of several Democrats who won seats in the longtime Republican stronghold of Southern California, and whether he can hold onto this seat could be an indication of the durability of the blue wave.
Iowa’s 1st Congressional District
In 2018, Democrat Abby Finkenauer defeated Republican Congressman Rod Blum by about 5 points. Now Finkenauer is trying to keep her seat from being reclaimed by Republican Ashley Hinson, a state representative. The 1st Congressional District, in northeast Iowa, narrowly supported President Trump in 2016. The Des Moines Register, in its last poll before Election Day, suggests Finkenauer is on track for a loss, 51% to 36%, well outside the poll’s margin of error. The poll also finds Mr. Trump leading Joe Biden by 7 points across the state.
Minnesota’s 7th Congressional District
Collin Peterson is one of the most conservative Democrats in the House. He was one of the only Democrats who voted against impeaching Mr. Trump. However, his district has become increasingly Republican in recent years, and in 2016, Mr. Trump won the district by 31 points over Hillary Clinton, with 62% of the vote. Peterson is being challenged by Michelle Fischbach, a former state senator and former lieutenant governor of Minnesota.
New Mexico’s 2nd Congressional District
It’s another rematch in New Mexico’s 2nd Congressional District. Democratic Congresswoman Xochitl Torres Small is again facing off against Yvette Herrell, a former state representative whom Torress Small defeated by fewer than 4,000 votes in 2018. Mr. Trump won the district by 10 points in 2016.
New York’s 11th Congressional District
Although most Americans think of New York City as overwhelmingly Democratic, the borough of Staten Island is a longtime Republican stronghold that supported Mr. Trump in 2016. Democrat Max Rose defeated incumbent Congressman Dan Donovan in 2018, but is now facing a tough challenge from Republican Nicole Malliotakis. Malliotakis is a state assemblywoman who previously ran unsuccessfully for mayor.
California’s 25th Congressional District
GOP Congressman Mike Garcia won the special election in May to replace Democratic Congresswoman Katie Hill, who resigned amidlast year. Garcia defeated Democrat Christy Smith in May, but Democratic voters are expected to turn out in higher numbers for the rematch between the two in November.
New Jersey’s 2nd Congressional District
Congressman Jeff Van Drew was elected as a Democrat in 2018, flipping a Republican district, but he switched his party registration to Republican shortly after voting against impeaching Mr. Trump. Although the president has personally visited Van Drew’s district, it is unclear whether Van Drew’s support for the president and his party switch will help or hinder him this year. Democrat Amy Kennedy, the wife of former Rhode Island Congressman Patrick Kennedy, is challenging Van Drew.
Ohio’s 1st Congressional District
Longtime GOP Congressman Steve Chabot has been representing Ohio in Congress for 24 years, since 1994, though there was a two-year gap when he lost his reelection race in 2008. He then ran again and was reelected in 2010. His margin of victory narrowed in 2018, and this year he is facing a credible challenge from Democrat Kate Schroder. Libertarian Kevin Kahn is also running.
Texas’ 22nd Congressional District
Democrats are investing heavily in Texas this year, and this district outside of Houston is considered a possible pickup with the retirement of GOP Congressman Pete Olson at the end of the year. Democrat Sri Preston Kulkarni, who narrowly lost to Olson in 2018, is running again. The Republican candidate Troy Nehls, the Fort Bend County sheriff who has been endorsed by Mr. Trump. Libertarian Joseph LeBlanc is also running.
Virginia’s 5th Congressional District
Earlier this year, in the sprawling 5th District that is the largest in Virginia, first-term incumbent GOP Congressman Denver Riggleman lost his primary to conservative challenger Bob Good. Good, who works at the conservative religious school Liberty University, will face off against Cameron Webb on Election Day. Webb, a physician, served as a White House fellow under both Presidents Obama and Trump. The district has been represented by Republicans since 2010.
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