Fox News contributor Juan Williams has a very good piece out this week that spells out very clearly why Republicans are privately (and in some cases publicly) extremely worried about what is going to happen on November 6th during the midterms.
Williams, a 40 year veteran observer of American politics concludes that while the Republicans will likely hold onto their majority in the Senate, there is almost no way for them to hold onto the House given the current trends. The Democrats need to flip 24 seats become the House majority, and they have many ways of doing this. Writes Williams;
For starters, there are seven districts in deep blue California that are currently represented by Republicans but that went for Clinton in 2016.
California law requires congressional districts to be drawn by a nonpartisan citizens’ redistricting commission. This has all but eliminated any gerrymandering edge California Republicans could have counted on in previous elections.
By my count, the Democrats have every reason to be confident of winning seven House seats in California. Add to that 16 more GOP-held districts outside of the Golden State where Clinton beat Trump.
Let’s be extremely generous and say that GOP manages to hold onto four of those 16, leaving the Dems with a pickup of 19 seats.
The GOP is also defending nine House districts where Trump won by less than eight points.
And Republicans are also defending the seats of two members – Chris Collins in New York and Duncan Hunter Jr. in California – where the incumbent is under indictment on federal corruption charges.
In addition, The Hill newspaper reported last week that “ more than 70 Democratic House hopefuls outraised Republican incumbents in the third quarter of 2018 … giving them a sharp financial edge in the final stretch of the midterms.”
This in short, is very, very bad news for Republicans. As Williams points out, there are also "the wildcard House races" that have increased greatly compared to past midterms. This favors the Democrats in November because many of their talented candidates are competing well in pro Trump congressional districts.
"Republicans have only one path to preserving their majority in the House," writes Williams. "They need to run the table. Meanwhile, Democrats have multiple plausible paths to net the 24 seats they need."
The latest projections on FiveThirtyEight should also terrify Republicans, as the polls indicate the Democrats are heavily favored to win back control in emphatic fashion:
This does not mean Democrats should be complacent about this -- we've seen shocking upsets before (just think back to November of 2016), and they must pull out all the stops to ensure they take back at least one branch of government.
However, as Williams and the math rightly point out, the chances are very slim. Trump and the GOP had better get ready for a new political reality on November 7th, and they had better get ready for war.