House Race Rankings: Getting to Know You

Three wave elections in a row have done plenty to scramble the House landscape. This year, it’s unlikely another wave will develop–at least any wave that could overwhelmingly benefit one party. Instead, we’re likely to see an anti-Washington backlash, one that could cost a number of members their jobs, even if neither side sees a big net increase.
In The Hotline‘s first House race rankings of the cycle, we take a look at the districts most likely to change hands in November–from longtime Democratic seats threatened by redistricting to Republican seats the 2010 wave brought in that will prove difficult to hold. Add in the decennial redistricting process, and there’s plenty of uncertainty across the map. Taken cumulatively, redistricting gave Republicans more slam-dunk possibilities near the top of our rankings, but the sheer size of the GOP majority gives Democrats a greater number of opportunities across the board.
In our monthly rankings, we consider the candidates’ fundraising ability; public and private polling; months of our cumulative reporting and analysis; and, of course, our own gut feelings. An important note: Reapportionment added a handful of brand-new districts to the mix. For simplicity’s sake, we classify the new seats’ “incumbent party” as Democratic or Republican based on The Cook Political Report‘s Partisan Voting Index. Happily, that adds up to the same number of Democratic and Republican seats each party holds in the current Congress.
The districts we expect to be competitive this cycle, ranked in order of most likely to change partisan control today:

Read more: http://nationaljournal.com/hotline/house-race-rankings-getting-to-know-you-20120718

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