House Republicans Announce 47 Democrats They Hope to Unseat
WASHINGTON — The House Republicans’ campaign arm on Wednesday revealed the list of 47 House Democrats it will target in the 2022 midterm elections, whose results are likely to be determined largely by the popularity of President Biden.
The National Republican Congressional Committee’s list includes 25 Democrats who were first elected in the Democrats’ 2018 wave election and six incumbents who represent districts that voted for former President Donald J. Trump in November. It includes a wide array of moderate Democrats, including Representatives Abigail Spanberger of Virginia and Conor Lamb of Pennsylvania, who have publicly sparred with the party’s more liberal wing in recent months.
The target list comes three months after House Republicans outperformed pre-election polling and flipped 15 Democratic-held seats in last year’s elections. The party out of power typically does well in midterm elections: Since World War II, the president’s party has lost an average of 27 House seats in midterm elections.
“House Republicans start the cycle just five seats short of a majority and are prepared to build on our 2020 successes to deliver a lasting Republican majority in the House,” said Representative Tom Emmer of Minnesota, the N.R.C.C. chairman. “We will stay laser-focused on recruiting talented and diverse candidates, aggressively highlighting Democrats’ socialist agenda and raising enough resources to win.”
The Republicans’ list is speculative, given that it will be months before states are able to begin drawing new congressional district lines. The Census Bureau is already late in delivering reapportionment and redistricting data to states, delaying until at least late summer a process that typically begins in February or March.
The tardiness of the census data has left both parties’ congressional campaign committees in limbo as they seek to recruit candidates for presumptive districts. Sun Belt states like Texas and Florida are expected to add multiple new House districts, while Northern states including Illinois, Ohio and New York are likely to lose at least one seat each.
At least six House Democrats who represent districts Mr. Trump carried in November are on the N.R.C.C. list: Representatives Cindy Axne of Iowa, Cheri Bustos of Illinois, Jared Golden of Maine, Elissa Slotkin of Michigan, Andy Kim of New Jersey and Ron Kind of Wisconsin.
Ms. Bustos, who led the House Democrats’ campaign arm in 2020, had margins of victory that shrunk from 24 percentage points in 2018 to four points in 2020. But with Illinois certain to lose at least one seat, her gerrymandered district, which snakes around to include Democratic-leaning sections of Peoria and Rockford along with the Illinois portion of the Quad Cities, will change before she faces voters again.
The N.R.C.C. also believes a handful of Democrats who underperformed Mr. Biden may be vulnerable against better-funded challengers. Those Democrats include Representatives Katie Porter and Mike Levin of California, who both had significantly less support than Mr. Biden in November.
And the committee included on its list 10 Democrats it declared to be potential targets of redistricting — a crop that includes the likes of Representative Carolyn Maloney of New York, whose district Mr. Biden carried by 70 points.
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