Thu Oct 22nd, 2020 at 12:47:21 AM EST
The Democrats should increase their control - National Conference of State Legislatures
Control of legislative chambers is vital to influence over redistricting and other legislation. Without control of at least one chamber or the Governorship a party is out of luck and influence. State legislatures have been a stronghold for Republicans.
On average, 12 chambers change party in each general election cycle--that includes changes in both directions. Democrats need to net nine chambers to reach parity this year, or 10 to pass Republicans in chamber control. Democrats have opportunities for gains, yet it will be a steep climb, particularly given that, as previously noted, this is a year unlike any other. The GOP primarily will be playing defense, with Dems on defense in just a few states.
Dems hope to take control of either or both chambers in Arizona, the Florida Senate, the Iowa House, the Michigan House, the Minnesota Senate, either or both chambers in North Carolina and the Wisconsin Senate. Further reaches include the Michigan House, Texas House and both chambers in Pennsylvania. And yet, this being an unprecedented year, making guesses is dangerous indeed
The Cook Political Report
If the arc of the 2020 election continues as it has for the past few months, the Democrats can look forward to gains in the state legislatures.
This is the conclusion of our second handicapping of state legislative control this election cycle; we published the first on Jan. 15. We're shifting eight chambers, six of which are currently held by the GOP, in the Democrats' direction.
At this point for the 2020 cycle, we rate 18 chambers as competitive – slightly more than the 17 we saw as competitive in our final handicapping prior to the 2018 election. Ominously for Republicans, the GOP holds 13 of the vulnerable chambers on our list, compared to just five for the Democrats. This suggests that the Democrats are positioned to net at least a few chambers this fall.
Each of the chambers we're placing in the lean Republican or lean Democratic categories are currently controlled by the party they lean towards. To put it another way, in these chambers, the party that controls the chamber is playing defense in 2020.