The election watch for next year is underway.
Democrats and Republicans are already vying for control next Congress. The Republicans seek to win back the majority in both the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives, but Democrats are on the offensive with the goal to flip several Republican seats in the upper chamber, The Hill reports.
Several Republican senators are retiring, and according to The Hill, Democrats are watching the nine seats in the Senate most likely to flip to Democrats in 2022 very closely.
The retirement of U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa., and President Joe Biden’s close win in Pennsylvania are seen as one of the best opportunities for the Democrats to take control, even though a Republican has served in the seat for 50 of the past 52 years, according to the article.
U.S. Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, has indicated his intention to retire and U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan, D-Ohio, is looking to build on his 2020 presidential campaign to take the seat from the Republican column.
In Georgia, where a runoff election Jan. 5 secured the Democrats’ narrow majority in the Senate, the seat held by U.S. Sen. Raphael Warnock will be key for the Democrats to keep.
Former U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler, R-Ga., who Warnock defeated in January, is expected to run again in the primaries, and the GOP remains a “powerful force” in Georgia, The Hill reports.
Other key states that could shape the Senate majority include North Carolina, Ohio, Arizona, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire and Wisconsin.
Meanwhile, in a special election June 1, the Democrats secured a victory for the seat formerly held by Deb Haaland, who resigned after being selected as Secretary of the Interior for the Biden administration, The Hill reports. The special election, held in New Mexico’s 1st congressional district, was flagged as an early indicator of Republicans’ and Democrats’ strengths in the midterms.
There is now a nine-seat spread between Democrats and Republicans in the House, with four vacancies.
The National Republican Congressional Committee has targeted 57 seats for the 2022 midterm elections, as the party seeks to reclaim the majority in the chamber, including those of U.S. Reps. Cheri Bustos of Illinois, Filemon Vela of Texas and Ann Kirkpatrick of Arizona, who have signaled they will retire, as well as U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist’s seat, a now Democrat of Florida, who is expected to announce another gubernatorial run.