The Cook Political Report's current outlook is for a Republican net gain of at least 40 seats. A turnover of 39 seats would tip majority status into Republican hands. At this point, only 205 House seats are Solid, Likely or Lean Democratic, while 181 seats are Solid, Likely or Lean Republican, and 45 seats are in the Toss Up column.There is even a graphic:
Ooops, wrong one:
- PENNSYLVANIA | District 10: Lean Democrat to Toss Up
- OHIO | District 18: Lean Democrat to Toss Up
- NEW YORK | District 19: Lean Democrat to Toss Up
- NEW YORK | District 4: Solid Democrat to Likely Democrat
- GEORGIA | District 2: Likely Democrat to Lean Democrat
- CONNECTICUT | District 4: Likely Democrat to Lean Democrat
- COLORADO | District 7: Likely Democrat to Lean Democrat
- CALIFORNIA | District 44: Likely Republican to Solid Republican
- CALIFORNIA | District 20: Likely Democrat to Lean Democrat
- CALIFORNIA | District 11: Lean Democrat to Toss Up
- UTAH | Governor: Likely Republican to Solid Republican
House Editor David Wasserman explains why ratings are changing in ten incumbent districts as more races come into view. Sophomore Democratic Reps. Jerry McNerney (CA-11) and John Hall (NY-19), who represent closely divided suburban bellwether districts, are facing their toughest tests yet after escaping 2008 without top-tier Republican opposition. And fellow sophomore Democratic Reps. Zack Space (OH-18) and Chris Carney (PA-10), who both have to defend tough votes on very Republican turf, have never had to run in this kind of political environment before and can no longer be considered clear favorites over subpar opponents.That Wasserman describes the Republican opponents as subpar suggests some bias in favor of the Democrats. Still the moves made by Cook will likely increase the fury Cook incurred when he criticized Obama's OFA earlier in a Time Magazine article What Ever Happened to Obama's Army?
What happened to Barack Obama's once vaunted political machine? The outfit that put upwards of 8 million volunteers on the street in 2008 — known as Organizing for America — is a ghost of its former self. Its staff has shrunk from 6,000 to 300, and its donors are depressed: Receipts are a fraction of what they were in 2008. Virtually no one in politics believes it will turn many contests this fall. "There's no chance that OFA is going to have the slightest impact on the midterms," says Charlie Cook, who tracks congressional races.Democrats, as we all know, don't take criticism well. Here is an excerpt of the scorched-earth response:
As to Mr. Cook, since OFA is running or helping to run coordinated campaigns in scores of states — his comment seems to suggest that GOTV in campaigns doesn't matter and the only thing that does is television ads — which would mean he slept thru the 2008 campaign. Besides the fact — when's the last time Charlie Cook attended a phone bank or walked a canvass or became expert on field organizing. Maybe given the whiplash some of his prognostications given people this year he's looking to opine on other things but I would venture to guess he doesn't have a clue as to what our organizing efforts are or what effect they stand to have on the outcome of close races.Charlie Cook has been predicting this reversal of Democratic fortunes as far back as August 2009. If anyone has whiplash it would have to be the Democrats who ignored the screaming of their constituents while the Dems ran toward that bright and shiny light we know as health care. The polling information that informs Cooks assessment of the midterms suggests Americans have had their fill of community organizers and are unlikely to be persuaded by Obama's campaign arm Organizing for America. Whether Organizing for America is focused on 2012 seems fairly obvious, Obama is all about Obama. The Democrats who sacrificed their career to vote for Obama's agenda should have seen that coming. That they didn't suggests they are the candidates who might best be described as "subpar."