CDT Analysis: CDT donors and community partners have been building political power and infrastructure in many of the districts targeted for congressional Republican-to-Democrat flips – especially in Orange County — for many years, which will be foundational for what pundits are anticipating will be a more widespread backlash against House Republicans at the polls. CDT staff will continue to track and analyze these House races to determine the most up-to-date strategic investments in community groups and candidates.
By Christina Bellantoni, Julie Westfall and Allison Wisk
The stakes are high in this year’s midterm elections: control of the U.S. House. For Democrats to reclaim power, they must forge a path through California, home to 39 Democratic-held seats and 14 Republican-held ones. The party considers 10 districts here to be battlegrounds and can’t win the House without winning at least a few of them.
Retirements in Southern California have created two open-seat races that could make that task a bit easier. On the other hand, Republicans could recruit strong and experienced candidates who might fare better against a crowded field of Democratic hopefuls, many of whom are seeking office for the first time.
Taking multiple factors into account, The Times’ California politics editors have ranked the hottest races by the intensity of the fight ahead. We’ll be updating our rankings….
- 39th District – Open seat (Republican incumbent Ed Royce not running)
- 49th District – Open seat (Republican incumbent Darrell Issa not running)
- 25th District – Republican incumbent Steve Knight
- 48th District – Republican incumbent Dana Rohrabacher
- 45th District – Republican incumbent Mimi Walters
- 10th District – Republican incumbent Jeff Denham
- 21st District – Republican incumbent David Valadao
- 50th District – Republican incumbent Duncan Hunter
- 22nd District – Republican incumbent Devin Nunes
- 4th District – Republican incumbent Tom McClintock
- 24th District – Democratic incumbent Salud Carbajal
- 7th District – Democratic incumbent Ami Bera
- 52nd District – Democratic incumbent Scott Peters
- 36th District – Democratic incumbent Raul Ruiz