Go to HHH home page.
Smart Politics
 


History Predicts Republicans Will Gain 19 Seats in Minnesota House in 2010

Bookmark and Share

Study of midterm elections since 1954 finds party out of power in the White House makes double digit gains in Minnesota House more than 60 percent of the time; GOP has averaged 19-seat gain with Democrats at the helm in D.C.

As previously reported at Smart Politics, Democrats have had an extremely difficult time in getting their nominee elected governor of the Gopher State while a Democrat sits in the White House.

Minnesotans have elected a a DFL (or Democratic) candidate to the governor's mansion in just 12 percent of gubernatorial contests with a Democrat in the White House, or 3 of 25 races since statehood.

And the news does not look much better for DFLers running for the Minnesota House of Representatives.

A Smart Politics analysis of Minnesota Legislative Reference Library data finds that the Minnesota Republican Party has averaged a net gain of 19 seats during midterm elections when Democratic presidents have sat in the Oval Office over the past six decades.

Overall, the party out of power in the White House has gained seats in 11 of the last 13 midterm election cycles, and netted double digit seats in eight of these, with the exceptions of 1990 and 2002, when Republicans gained seats in the Minnesota House while George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush were in office respectively.

(Note: from 1913 through 1973 legislators in the Gopher State campaigned and caucused as "Liberals" or "Conservatives," roughly equivalent in most years to Democrats / DFLers and Republicans, respectively).

During this 52-year span through 2006, Democrats have never gained seats in the Minnesota House during midterms while one of their own was in the White House.

Republicans, meanwhile, have feasted at the ballot box, netting double-digit seats in all but one of these cycles:

· In 1962, the Conservative caucus gained 19 seats while John F. Kennedy was in office.
· In 1966, the Conservatives netted 14 more seats with Lyndon Johnson in the White House.
· In 1978, Republicans gained 37 seats with Jimmy Carter in D.C.
· In 1994, Republicans netted 16 seats during Bill Clinton's first term.
· In 1998, the GOP gained another 7 seats during Clinton's second term.

And while five data points may not be the safest measure on which to predict future outcomes, with the popularity of Barack Obama waning and enthusiasm among self-identified Republicans waxing, there is little reason to believe the GOP does not have a strong shot to approach these numbers again in 2010.

Democrats have similarly made substantial gains in midterm elections when the presidency was under Republican control.

Putting aside the aforementioned exceptions of 1990 and 2002, Democrats have averaged gains of 15 seats across the other seven election cycles with a GOPer in the White House:

· In 1954, the Liberal caucus gained 20 seats during Dwight Eisenhower's first term.
· In 1958, the Liberals notched a 2-seat gain during Eisenhower's second term.
· In 1970, the Liberal caucus netted 15 seats during Richard Nixon's first term.
· In 1974, the DFL gained 27 seats after Gerald Ford ascended to the presidency.
· In 1982, the DFL netted 7 seats during Ronald Reagan's first term.
· In 1986, the DFL gained 18 seats during Reagan's second term.
· In 2006, the DFL netted 19 seats during George W. Bush's second term.

Should 2010 play out the way history suggests, a 19-seat gain by the GOP would mean Republicans would be just shy of tying the DFL for the number of seats in the lower chamber (the DFL currently holds an advantage of 87 to 47 seats).

Net Gains in Minnesota House Midterm Elections, 1954-2006

Year
Presidency
MN House Gains
2006
Republican
+19 DFL
2002
Republican
+13 GOP
1998
Democrat
+7 GOP
1994
Democrat
+16 GOP
1990
Republican
+1 GOP
1986
Republican
+18 DFL
1982
Republican
+7 DFL
1978
Democrat
+37 GOP
1974
Republican
+27 DFL
1970
Republican
+15 Liberal
1966
Democrat
+14 Conservative
1962
Democrat
+19 Conservative
1958
Republican
+2 Liberal
1954
Republican
+20 Liberal
Minnesota Legislative Reference Library data compiled by Smart Politics.

Follow Smart Politics on Twitter.

Previous post: Twins Clinch, But Division Victory Not Unusual in Year 1 of New Stadium
Next post: Tea Party, The Movie: Panned by Critics, Loved by Audiences

2 Comments


  • it isnt a good year to be a dfl'er / dem.....spending has gone overboard and the people are responding..whatever trends you have, double it this year....even george soros says itsan "avalanche"...go with the "smart money".

  • how manay seats did the gop take in minnesota? being a landslide of historic proportions, i was wondering if it was more than 19. having taken over as many state legislatures and governorships, the progressives really took it on the chin.

  • Leave a comment


    Remains of the Data

    Is There a Presidential Drag On Gubernatorial Elections?

    Only five of the 20 presidents to serve since 1900 have seen their party win a majority of gubernatorial elections during their administrations, and only one since JFK.

    Political Crumbs

    Strike Three for Miller-Meeks

    Iowa Republicans had a banner day on November 4th, picking up both a U.S. Senate seat and one U.S. House seat, but Mariannette Miller-Meeks' defeat in her third attempt to oust Democrat Dave Loebsack in the 2nd CD means the GOP will not have a monopoly on the state's congressional delegation in the 114th Congress. The loss by Miller-Meeks (following up her defeats in 2008 and 2010) means major party nominees who lost their first two Iowa U.S. House races are now 0 for 10 the third time around in Iowa history. Miller-Meeks joins Democrat William Leffingwell (1858, 1868, 1870), Democrat Anthony Van Wagenen (1894, 1912 (special), 1912), Democrat James Murtagh (1906, 1914, 1916), Democrat Clair Williams (1944, 1946, 1952), Democrat Steven Carter (1948, 1950, 1956), Republican Don Mahon (1966, 1968, 1970), Republican Tom Riley (1968, 1974, 1976), Democrat Eric Tabor (1986, 1988, 1990), and Democrat Bill Gluba (1982, 1988, 2004) on the Hawkeye State's Three Strikes list.


    Larry Pressler Wins the Silver

    Larry Pressler may have fallen short in his long-shot, underfunded, and understaffed bid to return to the nation's upper legislative chamber, but he did end up notching the best showing for a non-major party South Dakota U.S. Senate candidate in more than 90 years. Pressler won 17.1 percent of the vote which is the best showing for an independent or third party U.S. Senate candidate in the state since 1920 when non-partisan candidate Tom Ayres won 24.1 percent in a race won by Republican Peter Norbeck. Overall, Pressler's 17.1 percent is good for the second best mark for a non-major party candidate across the 35 U.S. Senate contests in South Dakota history. Independent and third party candidates have appeared on the South Dakota U.S. Senate ballot just 25 times over the last century and only three have reached double digits: Pressler in 2014 and Ayres in 1920 and 1924 (12.1 percent). Pressler's defeat means he won't become the oldest candidate elected to the chamber in South Dakota history nor notch the record for the longest gap in service in the direct election era.


    more POLITICAL CRUMBS

    Humphrey School Sites
    CSPG
    Humphrey New Media Hub

    Issues />

<div id=
    Abortion
    Afghanistan
    Budget and taxes
    Campaign finances
    Crime and punishment
    Economy and jobs
    Education
    Energy
    Environment
    Foreign affairs
    Gender
    Health
    Housing
    Ideology
    Immigration
    Iraq
    Media
    Military
    Partisanship
    Race and ethnicity
    Reapportionment
    Redistricting
    Religion
    Sexuality
    Sports
    Terrorism
    Third parties
    Transportation
    Voting