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

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Revision as of 21:08, 20 September 2010

6,125 seats of the country's 7,384 state legislative seats are up for election in the 2010 state legislative elections.

This includes:

Ballotpedia's staff sconducted an analysis to determine the degree of competitiveness of 2010's state legislative elections. We also determined the extent to which state legislative incumbents who are running again in 2010 had or have:

Overall, the competitive analysis leans in the Republican's favor going into the elections -- meaning Democrats have a greater likelihood to lose seats because of the following factors:

  • There are 46 more Democratic incumbents than Republicans that have vacated their seats.
  • There are 112 more Democratic incumbents than Republicans that faced a primary.
  • There are 111 more Republican incumbents than Democrats that face no primary or general election competition.

All of that points toward a greater likelihood that Republicans may win back more seats in the election.

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




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 swing a number of chambers. Our research indicates that certain chambers might have a greater likelihood of swinging to a different party.

Term limits

Republicans 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).

Additionally, term limits prove to be a unique scenario for competitiveness.

  • There are13 more Republican incumbents than Democrats that have vacated their seats.
  • There are 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.

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

Term limited Senates

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

Number of Open seats Total incumbents facing primary Total incumbents with no primary or general election
Democrats Democratic Party 75 7 11
Republicans Republican Party 82 15 16
Independents Independent 3 13 8
Total 164 35 137

Non-Term limited Senates

Number of Open seats Total incumbents facing primary Total incumbents with no primary or general election
Democrats Democratic Party 63 89 74
Republicans Republican Party 45 62 102
Independents Independent 0 0 0
Total 109 151 176


Term limited states: senate analysis

Senate with limits Seats in senate Up for election in 2010 Total open seats Total incumbents facing primary Total incumbents with no primary or general election opponent Competitiveness rank (overall)
Arizona: (Senate), (2010 elections) 30 30 15 4 5 2
Arkansas: (Senate), (2010 elections) 35 17 13 1 3 33
California: (Senate), (2010 elections) 40 21 10 0 0 10
Colorado: (Senate), (2010 elections) 35 19 6 1 0 22
Florida: (Senate), (2010 elections) 40 23 13 2 5 12
Maine: (Senate), (2010 elections) 35 35 10 0 0 15
Michigan: (Senate), (2010 elections) 38 38 29 3 0 3
Missouri: (Senate), (2010 elections) 34 17 10 3 1 21
Montana: (Senate), (2010 elections) 50 26 17 0 2 13
Nebraska: (Senate), (2010 elections) 49 24 3 13 8 16
Nevada: (Senate), (2010 elections) 21 11 8 1 0 4
Ohio: (Senate), (2010 elections) 33 17 9 1 1 11
Oklahoma: (Senate), (2010 elections) 48 24 9 4 6 32
South Dakota: (Senate), (2010 elections) 35 35 13 1 7 18
Totals: 523 337 164 34 38

See also

State legislative elections, 2010 Impact of term limits on state legislative elections in 2010 Ballotpedia:Dearth of challengers in 2010 state legislative elections