Nancy Pelosi won’t be Speaker next year: Republicans are poised to keep control of the House, and probably pick up seats

Nancy Pelosi

Forget the annoying fundraising emails from House Democrats’ campaign arm, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, and the talk from left-leaning pundits about the House being in play this fall. It just ain’t going to happen, folks. Because math, as USA Today notes:

In 2012, congressional district lines were redrawn, as is constitutionally required every 10 years, based on population shifts. Republicans had the upper hand in many states after the GOP won control of governorships and state legislatures following the 2010 Tea Party wave. The end result has been a precipitous drop in the number of competitive seats and a rise in the number of seats considered so safely Republican or Democratic that they are unlikely to ever switch party control.

Today, roughly 50 districts in the 435-member House make up the entirety of the 2014 battleground.

The non-partisan Cook Political Report ranks just 16 of those districts, 13 held by Democrats and three by Republicans, as competitive enough that neither party has a clear advantage with fewer than 100 days to go before Election Day.

The current House makeup includes 234 Republicans and 199 Democrats, and there are two vacant seats that are safely Democratic. That means Democrats need a net gain of 17 seats for a takeover. They’d have to pick up 17 Republican seats and lose none of their own, or make even greater gains in GOP territory to make up for any losses.

Basically, Democrats have virtually no shot of taking control of the House this year. The numbers just aren’t there. Obviously, there are some other factors in the mid-term equation as well.

First, President Obama is pretty much failing — like miserably. According to Real Clear Politics, his job approval rating is hovering around 41 percent, while 54 percent disapprove. That’s going to trickle down to Democratic candidates in competitive House and Senate races. This ties into the “six-year itch” that presidents historically experience.

So, in some respects, what you’re hearing from Democratic-friendly pundits and commentators about the unpopularity of Republicans and how it could come back to haunt them in the fall is really just noise. On paper, House Republicans aren’t only expected to keep their majority, but they’re also poised to pick up seats.

For that to change, Republicans would have do something cataclysmically stupid in the next few weeks. That window is rapidly closing. After the beginning of September, if voters’ moods to President Obama have moved, Democrats will pay the price at the ballot box.

And that means Nancy Pelosi, will not be Speaker of the House next year. Sorry, we’re not sorry.


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