Difference between revisions of "Partisan balance of legislatures and 2010 competitiveness"

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{{CA201toc}}'''6,125 seats''' of the country's 7,384 state legislative seats are up for election in the [[state legislative elections, 2010|2010 state legislative elections]].  
+
'''By Geoff Pallay and Leslie Graves'''
 +
 
 +
{{CA201toc}}'''6,125 seats''' of the country's 7,384 state legislative seats were up for election in the [[state legislative elections, 2010|2010 state legislative elections]].  
  
 
This includes:
 
This includes:
Line 6: Line 8:
 
* 4,958 (91.6%) of the country's 5,413 [[state representatives|state house seats]].
 
* 4,958 (91.6%) of the country's 5,413 [[state representatives|state house seats]].
  
There are [[state legislative elections, 2010|6,125 state legislative districts with a seat up for election]] on November 2, 2010, in 46 states.  We took a look at each of the 46 states to see how many state legislative incumbents chose to run for re-election in 2010.   
+
There were [[state legislative elections, 2010|6,125 state legislative districts with a seat up for election]] on November 2, 2010, in 46 states.  We took a look at each of the 46 states to see how many state legislative incumbents chose to run for re-election in 2010.   
  
 
Our main findings:
 
Our main findings:
  
Overall, the competitive analysis leans in the '''Republican's favor''' going into the elections -- meaning Democrats have a higher likelihood of losing seats because of the following factors:
+
Overall, the competitive analysis leaned in the '''Republican's favor''' going into the elections -- meaning Democrats had a higher likelihood of losing seats because of the following factors:
  
:*There are '''46 more Democratic incumbents''' than Republicans that have vacated their seats.
+
:*There were '''48 more Democratic incumbents''' than Republicans that vacated their seats.
:*There are '''112 more Democratic incumbents''' than Republicans that faced a primary.
+
:*There were '''118 more Democratic incumbents''' than Republicans that faced a primary.
:*There are '''134 more Republican candidates''' than Democrats that face no major party competition in the general election.
+
:*There were '''100 more Republican candidates''' than Democrats that faced no major party competition in the general election.
 
{{tnr}}
 
{{tnr}}
All of that points toward a greater likelihood that Republicans may win back more seats in the election.
 
  
Comparing states:
+
All of that pointed toward a greater likelihood that Republicans may have won back more seats in the election.
  
 +
==State partisan balance and competitiveness==
  
 +
Of the [[2010 state legislative elections analyzed using a Competitiveness Index|10 most competitive]] states:
 +
* {{bluedot}} 5 were currently controlled by Democrats
 +
* {{reddot}} 2 were currently controlled by Republicans
 +
* {{legislaturepurpledot}} 2 were split Democrat/Republican
 +
* {{legislaturegreendot}} 1 was non-partisan.
 +
 +
Of the [[2010 state legislative elections analyzed using a Competitiveness Index|10 least competitive]] states:
 +
* {{bluedot}} 4 were currently controlled by Democrats
 +
* {{reddot}} 3 were currently controlled by Republicans
 +
* {{legislaturepurpledot}} 3 were split Democrat/Republican
 +
[[File:Competitiveness logo 4.jpg|250px|right|link=2010 state legislative elections analyzed using a Competitiveness Index|]]
 +
{{statesen2010}}
 +
Based on our competitiveness index, the most competitive states are the ones that were more likely to see a higher percentage of incumbents lose in the general election. The least competitive states were more likely to see little change in state legislatures. Below are the rankings of the competitiveness of states along with whether it was controlled by Democrats, Republicans, or split houses.
 +
<div style="float:left; margin-top: 0.0em; margin-bottom:3px; background-color: #transparent; padding: .2em .6em; font-size: 100%; border:1px solid #A3B1BF;">'''Legend:'''
 +
<center>{{bluedot}} = <small> [[Democratic Party]] hold Senate/House • {{reddot}} = [[Republican Party]] holds Senate/House <br>{{legislaturepurpledot}} = Chamber control split between Democrats/Republicans </small></center>
 +
<span style="font-size: larger;font-weight: bold;"></span></div><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br>
 +
{{statehouse2010}}
 +
{|class="wikitable sortable" cellspacing="1" cellpadding="5" border="1" style="background:none" style="width:50%;"
 +
|-
 +
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | State
 +
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Competitiveness rank
 +
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Party in power
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Alabama State Legislature|Alabama]]
 +
| align="center" | 22
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Alaska State Legislature|Alaska]]
 +
| align="center" | 31
 +
| align="center" | {{Legislaturepurpledot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| style="background-color:#FFBF00" | [[Arizona State Legislature|Arizona]]
 +
| align="center" | 3
 +
| align="center" style="background-color:#FFBF00" | {{reddot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| style="background-color:#FFBF00" | [[Arkansas State Legislature|Arkansas]]
 +
| align="center" | 33
 +
| align="center" style="background-color:#FFBF00" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| style="background-color:#FFBF00" | [[California State Legislature|California]]
 +
| align="center" | 11
 +
| align="center" style="background-color:#FFBF00" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| style="background-color:#FFBF00" | [[Colorado General Assembly|Colorado]]
 +
| align="center" | 21
 +
| align="center" style="background-color:#FFBF00" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Connecticut State Legislature|Connecticut]]
 +
| align="center" | 36
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Delaware State Legislature|Delaware]]
 +
| align="center" | 44
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| style="background-color:#FFBF00" | [[Florida State Legislature|Florida]]
 +
| align="center" | 17
 +
| align="center" style="background-color:#FFBF00" | {{reddot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Georgia State Legislature|Georgia]]
 +
| align="center" | 28
 +
| align="center" | {{reddot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Hawaii State Legislature|Hawaii]]
 +
| align="center" | 6
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Idaho State Legislature|Idaho]]
 +
| align="center" | 30
 +
| align="center" | {{reddot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Illinois State Legislature|Illinois]]
 +
| align="center" | 39
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Indiana State Legislature|Indiana]]
 +
| align="center" | 37
 +
| align="center" | {{legislaturepurpledot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Iowa State Legislature|Iowa]]
 +
| align="center" | 29
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Kansas State Legislature|Kansas]]
 +
| align="center" | 34
 +
| align="center" | {{reddot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Kentucky State Legislature|Kentucky]]
 +
| align="center" | 43
 +
| align="center" | {{legislaturepurpledot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| style="background-color:#FFBF00" | [[Maine State Legislature|Maine]]
 +
| align="center" | 14
 +
| align="center" style="background-color:#FFBF00" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Maryland State Legislature|Maryland]]
 +
| align="center" | 5
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Massachusetts State Legislature|Massachusetts]]
 +
| align="center" | 40
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| style="background-color:#FFBF00" | [[Michigan State Legislature|Michigan]]
 +
| align="center" | 2
 +
| align="center" style="background-color:#FFBF00" | {{legislaturepurpledot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Minnesota State Legislature|Minnesota]]
 +
| align="center" | 24
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| style="background-color:#FFBF00" | [[Missouri State Legislature|Missouri]]
 +
| align="center" | 20
 +
| align="center" style="background-color:#FFBF00" | {{reddot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| style="background-color:#FFBF00" | [[Montana State Legislature|Montana]]
 +
| align="center" | 12
 +
| align="center" style="background-color:#FFBF00" | {{legislaturepurpledot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| style="background-color:#FFBF00" | [[Nebraska State Senate (Unicameral)|Nebraska]]
 +
| align="center" | 7
 +
| align="center" style="background-color:#FFBF00" | {{legislaturegreendot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| style="background-color:#FFBF00" | [[Nevada State Legislature|Nevada]]
 +
| align="center" | 4
 +
| align="center" style="background-color:#FFBF00" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[New Hampshire State Legislature|New Hampshire]]
 +
| align="center" | 1
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[New Mexico State Legislature|New Mexico]]
 +
| align="center" | 42
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[New York State Legislature|New York]]
 +
| align="center" | 13
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[North Carolina State Legislature|North Carolina]]
 +
| align="center" | 19
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[North Dakota State Legislature|North Dakota]]
 +
| align="center" | 25
 +
| align="center" | {{reddot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| style="background-color:#FFBF00" | [[Ohio State Legislature|Ohio]]
 +
| align="center" | 8
 +
| align="center" style="background-color:#FFBF00" | {{legislaturepurpledot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| style="background-color:#FFBF00" | [[Oklahoma State Legislature|Oklahoma]]
 +
| align="center" | 32
 +
| align="center" style="background-color:#FFBF00" | {{reddot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Oregon State Legislature|Oregon]]
 +
| align="center" | 27
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Pennsylvania State Legislature|Pennsylvania]]
 +
| align="center" | 38
 +
| align="center" | {{legislaturepurpledot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Rhode Island State Legislature|Rhode Island]]
 +
| align="center" | 15
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[South Carolina State Legislature|South Carolina]]
 +
| align="center" | 41
 +
| align="center" | {{reddot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| style="background-color:#FFBF00" | [[South Dakota State Legislature|South Dakota]]
 +
| align="center" | 18
 +
| align="center" style="background-color:#FFBF00" | {{reddot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Tennessee State Legislature|Tennessee]]
 +
| align="center" | 45
 +
| align="center" | {{reddot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Texas State Legislature|Texas]]
 +
| align="center" | 46
 +
| align="center" | {{reddot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Utah State Legislature|Utah]]
 +
| align="center" | 10
 +
| align="center" | {{reddot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Vermont State Legislature|Vermont]]
 +
| align="center" | 35
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Washington State Legislature|Washington]]
 +
| align="center" | 26
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[West Virginia State Legislature|West Virginia]]
 +
| align="center" | 9
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Wisconsin State Legislature|Wisconsin]]
 +
| align="center" | 16
 +
| align="center" | {{bluedot}}
 +
 +
|-
 +
| [[Wyoming State Legislature|Wyoming]]
 +
| align="center" | 23
 +
| align="center" | {{reddot}}
 +
|-valign="top"
 +
| style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | '''Totals:''' || text align="center" | '''1,167''' || align="center" | '''23''' {{bluedot}} '''14''' {{reddot}}
 +
|}
  
 
==Partisan composition of chambers==
 
==Partisan composition of chambers==
[[File:Competitiveness logo 4.jpg|350px|right|link=2010 state legislative elections analyzed using a Competitiveness Index|]]
+
 
 
Heading into the 2010 elections, this was the breakdown of partisan control of each chamber:
 
Heading into the 2010 elections, this was the breakdown of partisan control of each chamber:
 
<div style="float:left; margin-top: 0.0em; margin-bottom:3px; background-color: #transparent; padding: .2em .6em; font-size: 100%; border:1px solid #A3B1BF;">'''Legend:'''
 
<div style="float:left; margin-top: 0.0em; margin-bottom:3px; background-color: #transparent; padding: .2em .6em; font-size: 100%; border:1px solid #A3B1BF;">'''Legend:'''
Line 29: Line 286:
 
</small></center>
 
</small></center>
 
<span style="font-size: larger;font-weight: bold;"></span></div><br><br><br><br>
 
<span style="font-size: larger;font-weight: bold;"></span></div><br><br><br><br>
 
+
{{Statelegpartisancontrolmap}}
 
{|class="wikitable" cellspacing="1" cellpadding="5" border="1" style="background:none" style="width:40%;"
 
{|class="wikitable" cellspacing="1" cellpadding="5" border="1" style="background:none" style="width:40%;"
 
|-
 
|-
Line 58: Line 315:
 
|}
 
|}
  
The 2010 elections could swing a number of chambers. Our research indicates that certain chambers might have a greater likelihood of swinging to a different party.
+
The 2010 elections could have swung a number of chambers. Our research indicates that certain chambers might have had a greater likelihood of swinging to a different party.
 +
 
 +
While some of the most competitive chambers were already so heavily partisan in one direction (for example, [[Hawaii]] for Democrats and [[Utah]] for Republicans), it was virtually impossible that partisan control will change. However, the higher degree of competitiveness implies that while the partisan control might not shift, more sitting incumbents might lose than in uncompetitive states.
  
 
==Term limits==
 
==Term limits==
  
Republicans [[Impact of term limits on state legislative elections in 2010|take more of a hit]] from term limits in this year's election. This is both in terms of how many individual incumbent legislators the [[Republican Party]] is losing (190, versus 182 for the [[Democratic Party]]) and in terms of how many state legislative chambers are losing more Republicans (13, versus 10 for the Democratic Party).  
+
Republicans [[Impact of term limits on state legislative elections in 2010|took more of a hit]] from term limits in this year's election. This was both in terms of how many individual incumbent legislators the [[Republican Party]] was losing (190, versus 182 for the [[Democratic Party]]) and in terms of how many state legislative chambers lost more Republicans (13, versus 10 for the Democratic Party).  
  
Additionally, term limits prove to be a unique scenario for competitiveness.  
+
While the competitiveness index swung in the Republican's favor, when isolating the term limits states the pendulum swung in the Democrats' favor.  
  
:*There are'''13 more Republican incumbents''' than Democrats that have vacated their seats.
+
:*There were '''13 more Republican incumbents''' than Democrats that vacated their seats.
:*There are '''25 more Republican incumbents''' than Democrats that faced a primary.
+
:*There were '''25 more Republican incumbents''' than Democrats that faced a primary.
:*There are '''36 more Republican incumbents''' than Democrats that face no primary or general election competition.
+
:*There were '''36 more Republican incumbents''' than Democrats that face no primary or general election competition.
 +
 
 +
Thus, in two out of the three categories in term limited states, Republicans faced a steeper climb to gaining back any legislative seats.
  
Thus, in two out of the three categories in term limited states, Republicans face a steeper climb to gaining back any more legislative seats.
 
{{statesen2010}}
 
 
===Term limited Senates===
 
===Term limited Senates===
  
 
Below is the comparison of term-limited states and non-term-limited state senates.   
 
Below is the comparison of term-limited states and non-term-limited state senates.   
  
{|class="wikitable" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="5" border="1" style="background:none" style="width:65%;"
+
{|class="wikitable" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="5" border="1" style="background:none" style="width:80%;"
 
|-
 
|-
 
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" |  
 
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" |  
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Number of Open seats
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Open seats
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Total incumbents facing primary
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Incumbents facing primary
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Total incumbents with no primary or general election
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Major party candidates with no major party
  
 
|-
 
|-
Line 87: Line 346:
 
| align="center" | 75
 
| align="center" | 75
 
| align="center" | 7
 
| align="center" | 7
| align="center" | 11
+
| align="center" | 34
  
 
|-
 
|-
Line 93: Line 352:
 
| align="center" | 82
 
| align="center" | 82
 
| align="center" | 15
 
| align="center" | 15
| align="center" | 16
+
| align="center" | 49
  
 
|-
 
|-
Line 99: Line 358:
 
| align="center" | 3
 
| align="center" | 3
 
| align="center" | 13
 
| align="center" | 13
| align="center" | 8
+
| align="center" | 0
  
 
|-
 
|-
Line 105: Line 364:
 
| align="center" | 164
 
| align="center" | 164
 
| align="center" | 35
 
| align="center" | 35
| align="center" | 137
+
| align="center" | 83
 
+
|-
 +
| Percentages
 +
| align="center" | 48.81%
 +
| align="center" | 20.35%
 +
| align="center" | 24.7%
 
|}
 
|}
  
 
===Non-Term limited Senates===
 
===Non-Term limited Senates===
  
{|class="wikitable" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="5" border="1" style="background:none" style="width:65%;"
+
{|class="wikitable" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="5" border="1" style="background:none" style="width:80%;"
 
|-
 
|-
 
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" |  
 
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" |  
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Number of Open seats
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Open seats
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Total incumbents facing primary
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Incumbents facing primary
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Total incumbents with no primary or general election
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Major party candidates with no major party
  
 
|-
 
|-
Line 122: Line 385:
 
| align="center" | 63
 
| align="center" | 63
 
| align="center" | 89
 
| align="center" | 89
| align="center" | 74
+
| align="center" | 107
  
 
|-
 
|-
Line 128: Line 391:
 
| align="center" | 45
 
| align="center" | 45
 
| align="center" | 62
 
| align="center" | 62
| align="center" | 102
+
| align="center" | 130
 
+
|-
+
| Independents {{greydot}}
+
| align="center" | 0
+
| align="center" | 0
+
| align="center" | 0
+
  
 
|-
 
|-
Line 140: Line 397:
 
| align="center" | 109
 
| align="center" | 109
 
| align="center" | 151
 
| align="center" | 151
| align="center" | 176
+
| align="center" | 237
 
+
|-
 
+
| Percentages
 +
| align="center" | 13.36%
 +
| align="center" | 20.42%
 +
| align="center" | 28.5%
 
|}
 
|}
  
===Term limited states: senate analysis===
+
===Term limited Houses===
  
{|class="wikitable sortable" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="5" border="1" style="background:none" style="width:90%;"
+
Below is the comparison of term-limited states and non-term-limited state senates. 
|-
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Senate with limits
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Seats in senate
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Up for election in 2010
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Total open seats
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Total incumbents facing primary
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Total incumbents with no primary or general election opponent
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Competitiveness rank (overall)
+
  
 +
{|class="wikitable" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="5" border="1" style="background:none" style="width:80%;"
 
|-
 
|-
| [[Arizona]]: ([[Arizona State Senate|Senate]]), ([[Arizona State Senate elections, 2010|2010 elections]])
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" |  
| align="center" | 30
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Open seats
| align="center" | 30
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Incumbents facing primary
| align="center" | 15
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Major party candidates with no major party opposition
| align="center" | 4
+
| align="center" | 5
+
| align="center" | 2
+
  
 
|-
 
|-
| [[Arkansas]]: ([[Arkansas State Senate|Senate]]), ([[Arkansas State Senate elections, 2010|2010 elections]])
+
| Democrats {{bluedot}}
| align="center" | 35
+
| align="center" | 192
| align="center" | 17
+
| align="center" | 51
| align="center" | 13
+
| align="center" | 150
| align="center" | 1
+
| align="center" | 3
+
| align="center" | 33
+
  
 
|-
 
|-
| [[California]]: ([[California State Senate|Senate]]), ([[California State Senate elections, 2010|2010 elections]])
+
| Republicans {{reddot}}
| align="center" | 40
+
| align="center" | 198
| align="center" | 21
+
| align="center" | 65
| align="center" | 10
+
| align="center" | 203
| align="center" | 0
+
| align="center" | 0
+
| align="center" | 10
+
  
 
|-
 
|-
| [[Colorado]]: ([[Colorado State Senate|Senate]]), ([[Colorado State Senate elections, 2010|2010 elections]])
+
| Independents {{greydot}}
| align="center" | 35
+
| align="center" | 19
+
| align="center" | 6
+
| align="center" | 1
+
| align="center" | 0
+
| align="center" | 22
+
 
+
|-
+
| [[Florida]]: ([[Florida State Senate|Senate]]), ([[Florida State Senate elections, 2010|2010 elections]])
+
| align="center" | 40
+
| align="center" | 23
+
| align="center" | 13
+
 
| align="center" | 2
 
| align="center" | 2
| align="center" | 5
 
| align="center" | 12
 
 
|-
 
| [[Maine]]: ([[Maine State Senate|Senate]]), ([[Maine State Senate elections, 2010|2010 elections]])
 
| align="center" | 35
 
| align="center" | 35
 
| align="center" | 10
 
 
| align="center" | 0
 
| align="center" | 0
 
| align="center" | 0
 
| align="center" | 0
| align="center" | 15
 
  
 
|-
 
|-
| [[Michigan]]: ([[Michigan State Senate|Senate]]), ([[Michigan State Senate elections, 2010|2010 elections]])
+
| Total
| align="center" | 38
+
| align="center" | 398
| align="center" | 38
+
| align="center" | 117
| align="center" | 29
+
| align="center" | 353
| align="center" | 3
+
| align="center" | 0
+
| align="center" | 3
+
 
+
 
|-
 
|-
| [[Missouri]]: ([[Missouri State Senate|Senate]]), ([[Missouri State Senate elections, 2010|2010 elections]])
+
| Percentages
| align="center" | 34
+
| align="center" | 31.56%
| align="center" | 17
+
| align="center" | 13.56%
| align="center" | 10
+
| align="center" | 27.99%
| align="center" | 3
+
|}
| align="center" | 1
+
| align="center" | 21
+
  
|-
+
===Non-Term limited Houses===
| [[Montana]]: ([[Montana State Senate|Senate]]), ([[Montana State Senate elections, 2010|2010 elections]])
+
| align="center" | 50
+
| align="center" | 26
+
| align="center" | 17
+
| align="center" | 0
+
| align="center" | 2
+
| align="center" | 13
+
  
 +
{|class="wikitable" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="5" border="1" style="background:none" style="width:80%;"
 
|-
 
|-
| [[Nebraska]]: ([[Nebraska State Senate (Unicameral)|Senate]]), ([[Nebraska State Senate elections, 2010|2010 elections]])
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" |  
| align="center" | 49
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Open seats
| align="center" | 24
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Incumbents facing primary
| align="center" | 3
+
! style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | Major party candidates with no major party
| align="center" | 13
+
| align="center" | 8
+
| align="center" | 16
+
  
 
|-
 
|-
| [[Nevada]]: ([[Nevada State Senate|Senate]]), ([[Nevada State Senate elections, 2010|2010 elections]])
+
| Democrats {{bluedot}}
| align="center" | 21
+
| align="center" | 249
| align="center" | 11
+
| align="center" | 468
| align="center" | 8
+
| align="center" | 652
| align="center" | 1
+
| align="center" | 0
+
| align="center" | 4
+
  
 
|-
 
|-
| [[Ohio]]: ([[Ohio State Senate|Senate]]), ([[Ohio State Senate elections, 2010|2010 elections]])
+
| Republicans {{reddot}}
| align="center" | 33
+
| align="center" | 208
| align="center" | 17
+
| align="center" | 353
| align="center" | 9
+
| align="center" | 675
| align="center" | 1
+
| align="center" | 1
+
| align="center" | 11
+
  
 
|-
 
|-
| [[Oklahoma]]: ([[Oklahoma State Senate|Senate]]), ([[Oklahoma State Senate elections, 2010|2010 elections]])
+
| Independents {{greydot}}
| align="center" | 48
+
| align="center" | 7
| align="center" | 24
+
| align="center" | 0
| align="center" | 9
+
| align="center" | 0
| align="center" | 4
+
| align="center" | 6
+
| align="center" | 32
+
  
 
|-
 
|-
| [[South Dakota]]: ([[South Dakota State Senate|Senate]]), ([[South Dakota State Senate elections, 2010|2010 elections]])
+
| Total
| align="center" | 35
+
| align="center" | 458
| align="center" | 35
+
| align="center" | 821
| align="center" | 13
+
| align="center" | 1,327
| align="center" | 1
+
|-
| align="center" | 7
+
| Percentages
| align="center" | 18
+
| align="center" | 12.71%
 
+
| align="center" | 25.41%
|-valign="top"
+
| align="center" | 35.9%
| style="background-color:#00008B; color: white;" | '''Totals:''' || text align="center" | '''523''' || text align="center"| '''337''' || text align="center"| '''164'''  || text align="center"| '''34''' || align="center" | '''38''' || NA
+
 
|}
 
|}
  
Line 293: Line 491:
 
* [[2010 state legislative elections analyzed using a Competitiveness Index]]
 
* [[2010 state legislative elections analyzed using a Competitiveness Index]]
  
[[Category:Competitiveness analysis of state legislative elections]]
+
[[Category:Competitiveness analysis of state legislative elections, 2010]]
 
[[Category:Elections, 2010]]
 
[[Category:Elections, 2010]]
 
[[Category:2010 legislative elections]]
 
[[Category:2010 legislative elections]]
 
[[Category:Original content, 2010]]
 
[[Category:Original content, 2010]]
 
+
[[Category:Competitiveness analysis of state legislative elections, 2010, report in detail]]
 
{{state legislatures}}
 
{{state legislatures}}

Revision as of 11:52, 27 June 2013

By Geoff Pallay and Leslie Graves

2010 Competitiveness Overview
Competitiveness logo 4.jpg
Primary competition (state comparison)
Incumbents with no primary challenge in 2010
Incumbents with no challenges at all in 2010
Incumbents defeatedVictorious challengers
Major party challengers (state comparison)
List of candidates with no competition
Open seats (state comparisons)
Impact of term limits on # of open seats
Long-serving senatorsLong-serving reps
Star bookmark.png   Results Comparisons  Star bookmark.png
Chart Comparing 2011 ResultsComparisons Between Years
Party differences
Competitiveness Index
2010 State Legislative Elections
Competitiveness Studies from Other Years
200720092011201220132014
6,125 seats of the country's 7,384 state legislative seats were up for election in the 2010 state legislative elections.

This includes:

There were 6,125 state legislative districts with a seat up for election on November 2, 2010, in 46 states. We took a look at each of the 46 states to see how many state legislative incumbents chose to run for re-election in 2010.

Our main findings:

Overall, the competitive analysis leaned in the Republican's favor going into the elections -- meaning Democrats had a higher likelihood of losing seats because of the following factors:

  • There were 48 more Democratic incumbents than Republicans that vacated their seats.
  • There were 118 more Democratic incumbents than Republicans that faced a primary.
  • There were 100 more Republican candidates than Democrats that faced no major party competition in the general election.

All of that pointed toward a greater likelihood that Republicans may have won back more seats in the election.

State partisan balance and competitiveness

Of the 10 most competitive states:

  • Democratic Party 5 were currently controlled by Democrats
  • Republican Party 2 were currently controlled by Republicans
  • Purple.png 2 were split Democrat/Republican
  • Greendot.png 1 was non-partisan.

Of the 10 least competitive states:

  • Democratic Party 4 were currently controlled by Democrats
  • Republican Party 3 were currently controlled by Republicans
  • Purple.png 3 were split Democrat/Republican
Competitiveness logo 4.jpg
2010 State senate elections
ALAKARARCACOCTDEFLGAHIIDILINIAKYMEMDMAMIMNMOMTNENVNHNYNCNDOHOKORPARISDTNTXUTVTWAWVWIWY
Parties with candidates
Impact of term limits
Successful challengers
Defeated incumbents
State house elections
State senate elections
State legislative elections

Based on our competitiveness index, the most competitive states are the ones that were more likely to see a higher percentage of incumbents lose in the general election. The least competitive states were more likely to see little change in state legislatures. Below are the rankings of the competitiveness of states along with whether it was controlled by Democrats, Republicans, or split houses.

Legend:
Democratic Party = Democratic Party hold Senate/House • Republican Party = Republican Party holds Senate/House
Purple.png = Chamber control split between Democrats/Republicans








State house elections
ALAKARARCACOCTDEFLGAHIIDILINIAKSKYMEMDMAMIMNMOMTNVNHNMNYNCNDOHOKORPARISCSDTNTXUTVTWAWVWIWY
Parties with candidates
Impact of term limits
Successful challengers
Defeated incumbents
State house elections
State senate elections
State legislative elections
State Competitiveness rank Party in power
Alabama 22 Democratic Party
Alaska 31 Purple.png
Arizona 3 Republican Party
Arkansas 33 Democratic Party
California 11 Democratic Party
Colorado 21 Democratic Party
Connecticut 36 Democratic Party
Delaware 44 Democratic Party
Florida 17 Republican Party
Georgia 28 Republican Party
Hawaii 6 Democratic Party
Idaho 30 Republican Party
Illinois 39 Democratic Party
Indiana 37 Purple.png
Iowa 29 Democratic Party
Kansas 34 Republican Party
Kentucky 43 Purple.png
Maine 14 Democratic Party
Maryland 5 Democratic Party
Massachusetts 40 Democratic Party
Michigan 2 Purple.png
Minnesota 24 Democratic Party
Missouri 20 Republican Party
Montana 12 Purple.png
Nebraska 7 Greendot.png
Nevada 4 Democratic Party
New Hampshire 1 Democratic Party
New Mexico 42 Democratic Party
New York 13 Democratic Party
North Carolina 19 Democratic Party
North Dakota 25 Republican Party
Ohio 8 Purple.png
Oklahoma 32 Republican Party
Oregon 27 Democratic Party
Pennsylvania 38 Purple.png
Rhode Island 15 Democratic Party
South Carolina 41 Republican Party
South Dakota 18 Republican Party
Tennessee 45 Republican Party
Texas 46 Republican Party
Utah 10 Republican Party
Vermont 35 Democratic Party
Washington 26 Democratic Party
West Virginia 9 Democratic Party
Wisconsin 16 Democratic Party
Wyoming 23 Republican Party
Totals: 1,167 23 Democratic Party 14 Republican Party

Partisan composition of chambers

Heading into the 2010 elections, this was the breakdown of partisan control of each chamber:

Legend:
Democratic Party = Democratic Party holds majority position • Republican Party = Republican Party holds majority position
Constitution_Party#Independent_American_Party_of_Nevada = Political parties tied for partisan control • Independent = Officially non-partisan chamber




Partisan dominance in state legislatures
heading into the 2010 state legislative elections
Nevada State LegislatureMassachusetts General CourtColorado General AssemblyNew Mexico State LegislatureWyoming State LegislatureArizona State LegislatureMontana State LegislatureCalifornia State LegislatureOregon State LegislatureWashington State LegislatureIdaho State LegislatureTexas State LegislatureOklahoma State LegislatureKansas State LegislatureNebraska State Senate (Unicameral)South Dakota State LegislatureNorth Dakota State LegislatureMinnesota State LegislatureIowa State LegislatureMissouri State LegislatureArkansas State LegislatureLouisiana State LegislatureMississippi State LegislatureAlabama State LegislatureGeorgia State LegislatureFlorida State LegislatureSouth Carolina State LegislatureIllinois State LegislatureWisconsin State LegislatureTennessee State LegislatureNorth Carolina State LegislatureIndiana State LegislatureOhio State LegislatureKentucky State LegislaturePennsylvania State LegislatureNew Jersey State LegislatureNew York State LegislatureVermont State LegislatureVermont State LegislatureNew Hampshire State LegislatureMaine State LegislatureWest Virginia State LegislatureVirginia State LegislatureMaryland State LegislatureMaryland State LegislatureConnecticut State LegislatureConnecticut State LegislatureDelaware State LegislatureDelaware State LegislatureRhode Island State LegislatureRhode Island State LegislatureMassachusetts State LegislatureNew Hampshire State LegislatureMichigan State LegislatureMichigan State LegislatureAlaska State LegislaturePartisan Breakdown State Legislatures2.jpg
Legislative chamber Democratic Party Republican Party Constitution_Party#Independent_American_Party_of_Nevada Independent
State senates 23 18 1 1
State houses 29 15 1 -
Totals: 52 33 2 1

The 2010 elections could have swung a number of chambers. Our research indicates that certain chambers might have had a greater likelihood of swinging to a different party.

While some of the most competitive chambers were already so heavily partisan in one direction (for example, Hawaii for Democrats and Utah for Republicans), it was virtually impossible that partisan control will change. However, the higher degree of competitiveness implies that while the partisan control might not shift, more sitting incumbents might lose than in uncompetitive states.

Term limits

Republicans took more of a hit from term limits in this year's election. This was both in terms of how many individual incumbent legislators the Republican Party was losing (190, versus 182 for the Democratic Party) and in terms of how many state legislative chambers lost more Republicans (13, versus 10 for the Democratic Party).

While the competitiveness index swung in the Republican's favor, when isolating the term limits states the pendulum swung in the Democrats' favor.

  • There were 13 more Republican incumbents than Democrats that vacated their seats.
  • There were 25 more Republican incumbents than Democrats that faced a primary.
  • There were 36 more Republican incumbents than Democrats that face no primary or general election competition.

Thus, in two out of the three categories in term limited states, Republicans faced a steeper climb to gaining back any legislative seats.

Term limited Senates

Below is the comparison of term-limited states and non-term-limited state senates.

Open seats Incumbents facing primary Major party candidates with no major party
Democrats Democratic Party 75 7 34
Republicans Republican Party 82 15 49
Independents Independent 3 13 0
Total 164 35 83
Percentages 48.81% 20.35% 24.7%

Non-Term limited Senates

Open seats Incumbents facing primary Major party candidates with no major party
Democrats Democratic Party 63 89 107
Republicans Republican Party 45 62 130
Total 109 151 237
Percentages 13.36% 20.42% 28.5%

Term limited Houses

Below is the comparison of term-limited states and non-term-limited state senates.

Open seats Incumbents facing primary Major party candidates with no major party opposition
Democrats Democratic Party 192 51 150
Republicans Republican Party 198 65 203
Independents Independent 2 0 0
Total 398 117 353
Percentages 31.56% 13.56% 27.99%

Non-Term limited Houses

Open seats Incumbents facing primary Major party candidates with no major party
Democrats Democratic Party 249 468 652
Republicans Republican Party 208 353 675
Independents Independent 7 0 0
Total 458 821 1,327
Percentages 12.71% 25.41% 35.9%

See also