Dem 51
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GOP 49
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The House Toss-Up Races Look Good for the Democrats

Nathan Gonzales of Inside Elections is rating 66 House races as competitive, but only 12 as true toss-ups. The other 54 lean one way or the other, but in a wave could flip. Gonzales has a different way of rating House districts than Charlie Cook. He uses all the results in federal and statewide elections during the past four cycles in each district as his data set. Then he applies a trimmed mean to them, eliminating the data points with the highest and lowest differences between the parties (which could be due to a fluke of some kind) and averages the rest. For the 12 toss-up districts, here are his results, sorted on how Democratic the district is (column 6). Cook's PVI is also given (column 7):

District Incumbent Party Dem Pct. GOP Pct Dem - GOP Pct. PVI
NY-04 Anthony D'Esposito Republican 55.4% 43.7% 11.7% D+5
NY-17 Mike Lawler Republican 54.3% 44.0% 10.3% D+3
NM-02 Gabe Vasquez Democratic 52.1% 46.2% 5.9% D+1
NY-03 "George Santos" Republican 52.2% 46.8% 5.5% D+2
NY-22 Brandon Williams Republican 51.7% 46.4% 5.3% D+1
MI-07 Open (was Elissa Slotkin) Democratic 51.3% 46.3% 5.0% R+2
CA-27 Mike Garcia Republican 51.6% 48.0% 3.7% D+4
OR-05 Lori Chavez-DeRemer Republican 48.2% 45.8% 2.3% D+2
CO-08 Yadira Caraveo Democratic 49.6% 47.4% 2.2% EVEN
CA-13 John Duarte Republican 50.4% 49.2% 1.2% D+4
NJ-07 Thomas Kean Jr. Republican 46.7% 51.0% -4.3% R+2
WA-03 Marie Perez Democratic 45.6% 53.7% -8.1% R+5

As you can see, Republicans are defending eight of the 12 toss-ups and seven lean Democratic according to the GVI (Gonzales Voting Index?). These are surely going to be top targets. The New Mexico and Michigan districts also lean Democratic, although Cook has Elissa Slotkin's district as R+2. The only Democrat in a very unfavorable district is Marie Perez in WA-03 in SW Washington, just north of the Columbia River, but she did win in 2022. She is the bluest of blue dogs, but in her district, that is the only way for a Democrat to win. She also owned a car repair shop before being elected to Congress, which gets her some street cred with blue-collar workers.

Democrats need to pick up five seats to capture the House. If they win the first 10 in the list and lose the next two, they will flip seven Republican seats and lose Perez' seat, for a net gain of six seats. That will do the job, but not leave a lot of margin for error. Of course, some of the seats that lean one way or the other could also flip, especially in a wave election. (V)

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