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By Phillip Stucky
Democratic strategists are planning how to take the US House of Representatives in the 2018 midterms, according to a statement made by a former Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee aide Tuesday.
“The storm clouds that normally hover above a wave election seem to be forming, which is incompetence, scandal and seeming to be out of touch,” the former aide told The Hill.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said the party could flip the House due to Trump’s unpopularity. The top democrat told The Hill that there were more than 40 Republican-held seats in districts that are considered more favorable to Democrats.
“If (the election) were today, I’d feel very confident. It’s not today,” Pelosi said in April.
President Donald Trump is experiencing record low approval ratings amid the ongoing scandal involving former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn.
Other Democratic representatives are more bullish about their prospects.
“When we take back the House in 2018, Democrats are going to hold this administration accountable,” said Rep. David Cicilline, D-R.I., a member of the party leadership. “And we’ll make sure there are real consequences for anyone who tries to use their elected office for personal gain…especially President Trump.”
Democrats would need to win an additional 24 seats in order to gain control of the House, and the DCCC is currently targeting 79 districts in their effort.
.@DCCC says it's adding 20 new GOP-held seats to its 2018 target list amid Trump "dumpster fire" pic.twitter.com/6qeoEOKQYM
— Scott Wong (@scottwongDC) May 22, 2017
So far, the party leadership devoted considerable funds and energy to special elections in 2017, but Republicans have maintained their numbers in the Kansas and Georgia special elections.
The Cook Political Report changed three congressional races from “leans Republican” to “toss-up,” 11 races from “likely Republican” to “leans Republican,” and six races from “solid Republican” to “likely Republican” The changes took place after the House voted on the administration’s replacement of the Affordable Care Act, indicating considerable blowback for representatives who took a stance on the issue.
“Given where Trump’s approval ratings is, we can guarantee that Republicans will lose seats — the question is, how many?” Associate Editor of Larry Sabato’s Crystal Ball Geoff Skelley told The Hill.