34 House Seats in Danger
Taegan Goddard points to a CQ Politics piece noting that 34 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives where “where voters split their ballots between Republicans for the House of Representatives and Democrat Barack Obama for the White House.”
CQ titles the piece “Nearly Three Dozen GOP House Winners Dodged Obama’s Coattails,” as if to signal that this is an extraordinary number of seats potentially up for grabs. Another way of looking at it, though, is that 401 of the 435, or 92.2 percent, of the districts voted along party lines. That’s an extraordinary number of seats where the party primary is synonymous with the election.
Making it worse, some of the mismatches are one-off flukes, such as the Louisiana 2nd where William “The Freezer” Jefferson was narrowly defeated in a multi-candidate race run under arcane rules and which are likely to return to form in the next election.
Not that this is a novel observation but we don’t exactly have a competitive election system.