There’s an interesting subplot to a rift that has emerged ahead of the 2018 midterm election. We’ve documented repeatedly that the number of women on the ballot in House races next month is at a high, with 235 advancing to the general election (183 of them Democrats).
The gulf in vote preference between men and women in generic ballot polling is broad, with women preferring Democrats and men Republicans by a wider margin than at any point in decades. White college-educated women in particular are turning away from the GOP.
On top of that, though, we layer the difficult political climate for House Republicans. President Trump’s broad unpopularity has meant tough reelection fights for a number of the members of his party on Capitol Hill. Dozens of Republicans have decided not to even run again. The result is that Cook Political Report estimates that 94 seats currently held or most recently held by Republicans are in play next month.
Republicans generally and Republicans in Congress specifically also tend to be more white and more male than Democrats. The net effect? Not only are more women running than ever before, but it’s mostly white men whose seats are at risk.
The majority of seats considered in play — more than three-quarters — are or have most recently been held by white men. What’s more, 85 of the 289 white men who most recently held seats in the House (including vacancies and retirements) are rated somewhere less than safe by Cook. That’s nearly 1 in 3.
Many of those seats will be held by the sitting members of Congress. Others will be lost ... to other white men.
The Post is tracking the races in which non-incumbent women are running. Our estimate is that 67 women are expected to win or are in competitive federal races. Twelve are expected to win. Seven of those 12 are running against men.
The rest of those contests are up in the air. But, as has been the case repeatedly in recent years, the congressional body elected next month will almost certainly be more diverse than the one it will replace.