Good evening everyone! Here is Part 4 of my predictions for the Midterms, the last of my House predictions. In this article, I’ll be covering NY19, NY22, PA1, TX7, TX32, UT4, VA5, VA7, and WA8. You can find Part 1 here, Part 2 here, and Part 3 here.
New York 19, John Faso (R), incumbent, vs. Antonio Delgado (D):
In 2016, John Faso won his first term in office fairly comfortably against Zephyr Teachout, 54-46. I followed the race closely that year, rooting for Faso, so it gives me no pleasure to see the race as close as it is. This year, Teachout ran to be New York’s AG, but lost the Democrat primary. Up against Faso instead is Antonio Delgado, who got a lot of press because he performed rap bars in a video that went viral. Delgado, however, is a Rhodes Scholar who grew up in upstate NY. Faso also has a sterling education, graduating from Georgetown University. This race is one of the major east coast bell weathers for Tuesday night, like NJ3, FL15, and ME 2. There are a couple independents running in the district, including Diane Neal, who has raised over $200,000. But Delgado has raised a tremendous amount for a Congressional race, having received nearly eight million dollars as of October 17. This will be very difficult for Faso to overcome, though it is possible.
Red Wall vote: Faso (R) wins, 50-47
Blue Wave vote: Delgado (D) wins, 52-45
New York 22, Claudia Tenney (R), incumbent, vs. Anthony Brindisi (D):
Claudia Tenney won a close victory in a three-way race in 2016, defeating Democrat Kim Myers by just over 5 points. Martin Babinec, running as a third-party candidate under the Upstate Jobs party, won over 12% of the vote, accumulating over 30,000 votes. This year, the first-time incumbent is running against Anthony Brindisi, a NY assemblyman, and it looks to be another close race. Ms. Tenney is an ardent supporter of President Trump’s agenda, while Brindisi once held an A rating from the NRA. Brindisi now has an “F” rating, however, after calling for expanding background checks of new gun owners. Brindisi has higher favorables than Tenney and has fundraised over $900,000 more than her this cycle. However, there is always a built-in advantage for an incumbent.
Red Wall vote: Tenney (R) wins, 51-49
Blue Wave vote: Crindisi (D) wins, 53-47
Pennsylvania 1, Brian Fitzpatrick (R), incumbent vs. Scott Wallace (D):
Pennsylvania 1 was redistricted since Fitzpatrick won election in 2016. Incumbent Republican Brian Fitzpatrick technically represents PA’s 8th district at the moment, but is, paradoxically, running for reelection in the 1st. In 2016, Fitzpatrick won by nearly 9 points, but the redistricting has help Democrats vie for control. More than that, Fitzpatrick’s opponent, Scott Wallace, has raised an eye-popping $14,000,000, easily quadrupling Fitzpatrick’s haul. Despite the redistricting and money disadvantage, Fitzpatrick has a very high favorability rating, which could lead his campaign to victory.
Red Wall vote: Fitzpatrick (R) wins, 53-47
Blue Wave vote: Wallace (D) wins, 52-48
Texas 7, John Culberson (R), incumbent, vs. Lizzie Fletcher (D):
John Culberson has been a member of the House since 2001, cruising to victories in the last few election cycles. The closest election since 2012 was last cycle, when Culberson defeated James Cargas by over 12 points. Cargas, incidentally, was crushed by Culberson in 2014 by 29 points. But if the Blue Wave is real, challenger Lizzie Fletcher has a chance, small though it might be. Fletcher’s strategy has been interesting: run to the center and try to win disaffected Trump voters and Never Trumpers, as well as Democrats. Many Dems this cycle are running hard to the left, so Fletcher’s tactics could prove valuable or disastrous. A Democrat victory here would be a very bad sign for Republicans, but it’s unlikely. But unlikely doesn’t mean impossible.
Red Wall vote: Culberson (R) wins, 56-44
Blue Wave vote: Fletcher (D) wins, 51-49
Texas 32, Pete Sessions (R), incumbent, vs. Colin Allred (D):
Texas 32 voted for Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump in 2016, but that didn’t stop the district from reelecting Pete Sessions by a whopping 52-point margin. Democrats didn’t even bother to run a candidate in the district that year, which is unsurprising considering Sessions’s track record of obliterating his opponents. But this year, former-NFL linebacker and lawyer Colin Allred is giving Sessions a run for his money. Sessions is well-known for a challenger and Clinton’s victory in the district is giving Democrats hope that, potentially, there are a large amount of untapped voters in the district. Fundraising is nearly equal, though Allred has an advantage of a few hundred thousand. This race is a dice roll, with turnout being the key.
Red Wall vote: Sessions (R) wins, 55-44
Blue Wave vote: Allred (D) wins, 52-47
Utah 4, Mia Love (R), incumbent, vs. Ben McAdams (D):
It gives me no pleasure to see this race as a toss-up, being someone who was a huge fan of Mia Love’s close losing campaign in 2012, then a fan during her victory in 2014 and again during her blow-out victory of over 12 points in 2016. This year things are looking tough for Love, though not unwinnable. Her challenger is Ben McAdams, who is the mayor of Salt Lake County and a former representative in Utah’s state legislature. He has high favorables, and his name-recognition is much higher than your average challenger, though in a rarity this year, he has raised drastically less than his GOP opponent. Mitt Romney is set to win Utah handily, but voters of the state were wary of the Republican ticket in 2016. While President Trump won the state, he received a plurality, but not a majority of the popular vote, with Evan McMullin receiving over 20% of the vote. For these reasons, McAdams looks to be the slight favorite.
Red Wave vote: Love (R) wins, 53-47
Blue Wave vote: McAdams (D) wins, 54-46
Virginia 5, Denver Riggleman (R) vs. Leslie Cockburn (D):
Representative Tom Garrett announced in late May that he was retiring from Congress to seek treatment for alcoholism, giving Democrats an unexpected opening in the race. Denver Riggleman, the Republican nominee and Air Force veteran, is now facing off against Leslie Cockburn, a journalist. This has been a weird race, with Garrett’s retirement to Cockburn accusing Riggleman of, uh, enjoying Bigfoot erotica. Both candidates have about the same recognition, but Cockburn has raised over a million dollars more than Riggleman. While the district leans Republican, strong Democrat turnout could stymie Republicans’ hope to keep the district.
Red Wall vote: Riggleman (R) wins, 53-47
Blue Wave vote: Cockburn (D) wins, 52-48
Virginia 7, David Brat (R), incumbent, vs. Abigail Spanberger (D):
David Brat rose to prominence during 2014, when he handed House Majority Leader Eric Cantor a shocking defeat during the Republican primaries. Brat then went on to trounce Jack Trammell by 24 points in the general election, then defeated Eileen Bedell by 15 points in 2016. Brat is no stranger to upsets, and Democrats are trying to pull off just that this time around with Abigail Spanberger, a former agent for the CIA. Both candidates have similar favorables, but Spanberger has over doubled Brat’s fundraising. Republicans and conservatives have noticed the tight race, with President Trump specifically endorsing Brat on twitter and Steve Bannon visiting the district to urge voters to support Brat. In a twist, ex-GOP Senator John Warner endorsed Spanberger, calling on moderate Republicans to vote Democrat in this race.
Red Wall vote: Brat (R) wins, 56-44
Blue Wave vote: Spanberger (D) wins, 52-48
Washington 8, Dino Rossi (R) vs. Kim Schrier (D):
You’ve heard this a few times already, but in 2017, the Republican incumbent of Washington 8 announced he would not seek reelection. Dave Reichert had won WA 8 handily for nearly a decade, winning by only 4 points in 2010, but then 18 points in 2012, 27 points in 2014, and 20 points in 2016. Now, Republicans are in a fight, with Kim Schrier trying to win the seat for Democrats. Schrier has a massive cash advantage over Dino Rossi, though Rossi has high name-recognition as a former legislator. Since its creation, the district has never elected a Democrat representative, despite being redistricted earlier this decade, but has ironically voted for the Democrat nominee for President since 1992. This race is a bell weather, though we’ll only know the results late in the night on Tuesday.
Red Wall vote: Rossi (R) wins, 53-47
Blue Wave vote: Schrier (D) wins, 52-48