WV-02

DCCC Targets Trump Districts in 2018
Democrats are banking on Trump being unpopular in even deep-red seats

New York Rep. Chris Collins, one of President Donald Trumps biggest House allies, is a 2018 Democratic target. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Fresh off the second weekend of nationwide protests against President Donald Trump, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has released its initial list of Republican-held seats it plans to target in 2018.

The House Democrats’ campaign arm is banking on Trump’s unpopularity being a drag on down-ballot Republicans, even though many GOP incumbents proved resilient to efforts to tie them to Trump in 2016. Democrats gained a net of six seats last November.

When Serving Together in Congress is a Family Affair
Mooney brothers seek to succeed Sanchez sisters as siblings in Congress

Linda Sanchez, center in red, and her sister Loretta Sanchez, get a tour of the House floor from Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart, R-Fla., during their first day in the House in 2003. (CQ Roll Call file photo).

Democrat Loretta Sanchez is giving up her House seat and the opportunity to continue to serve with her sister in Congress to run for the Senate in California, while the Mooney brothers are hoping to become Congress’s latest pair of siblings.  

The Sanchezes (Loretta of the 46th District and Linda of the 38th) are currently the only siblings serving in Congress. Republican Rep. Alex Mooney was first elected in West Virginia’s 2nd District in 2014 and his brother, Pat, is running in Florida’s 6th District.  

The Seats Democrats Must Win to Retake House
Minority party must gain 30 seats in November; little to no room for error

Democrats are focusing on more suburban districts, where they believe changing demographics are moving seats into the Democratic column, in their effort to regain the majority in the House. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

As Democratic chances of taking back the House improve with the success of Donald Trump and Ted Cruz, party strategists are trying to figure out exactly how and where it’s going to happen. It’s not too difficult to see Democrats gaining 10, or even 20, seats in November, but gaining the 30 required for a majority is more difficult and will require Democrats winning a large swath of seats where Republicans are currently heavy favorites.  

Winning the House majority is more than focusing on the presidential margin and allotting House seats to Democrats because of the strength of some GOP incumbents. For example, Democrats are not going to defeat Republican Rep. Frank A. LoBiondo this year, even though President Barack Obama won New Jersey’s 2nd with 54 percent, or win New Jersey’s 3rd (which Obama won with 52 percent), where wealthy GOP Rep. Tom MacArthur could easily outspend any challenger.