Open seats in the 2007 state legislative elections

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2007 Competitiveness Overview
3Competitive 2007.jpg
Primary competition (state comparison)
Major party challengers (state comparison)
Open seats (state comparisons)
Competitiveness IndexAbsolute Index
Comparisons Between Years
2007 State Legislative Elections
Competitiveness Studies from Other Years
200920102011
By Geoff Pallay with Kevin Diana, Tyler King and Justin Haas

There were 578 state legislative districts, in 4 states, with a seat up for election on November 6, 2007 that were studied. We took a look at each of the 4 states to see how many state legislative incumbents chose to run for re-election in 2007.

Our main findings:

  • In 137 (23.7%) of the 578 seats up for election on November 6, the incumbent did not run for re-election, either because he or she voluntarily chose not to run again, or because of term limits.
  • In 441 (76.3%) of the 578 seats up for election on November 6, the incumbent ran for re-election.

Comparing states:

  • Virginia had the lowest ratio of open seats; that is, it has the highest ratio of incumbents running for re-election.
  • The state with the highest ratio of open seats was Louisiana.

The score that states received based on their ratio of open seats is one of 3 factors used in evaluating which states have the highest, and which the lowest, overall competitiveness in the 2007 state legislative elections.

States compared by open seats

The state that is least competitive as defined by the percentage of its seats where the incumbent did not run for re-election in 2007 is defined as #4, while the state that is most competitive as defined by the percentage of its seats where the incumbent did not run for re-election is defined as #1; that is, 1 = "most competitive", 4 = "least competitive".

State Senate at stake Open senate House at stake Open house Total open  % open Open seats rank Overall competitive rank
Louisiana 39 18 105 57 75 52.1% 1 4
Mississippi 52 6 122 12 18 10.3% 3 2
New Jersey 40 12 80 22 34 28.3% 2 1
Virginia 40 2 100 8 10 7.1% 4 3

See also