Go to HHH home page.
Smart Politics
 


Projections: 2012 Upper Midwestern U.S. House Races

Bookmark and Share

More than a half-dozen contests in the five-state region could be decided by single digits

ushouseseal10.pngThe Upper Midwest has been no stranger to shake-ups to its U.S. House delegations with four Democratic pick-ups in 2006 (IA-01, IA-02, MN-01, WI-08) and five Republican pick-ups in 2010 (MN-08, ND-AL, SD-AL, WI-07, WI-08).

While there will likely not be that much turnover in the five-state, 22-seat region in 2012, there are expected to be several competitive races decided by single digits.

In Iowa, there are two marquee matchups eight-term Democratic U.S. Representative Leonard Boswell and nine-term Republican U.S. Representative Tom Latham in an incumbent vs. incumbent matchup in the 3rd CD due to the Hawkeye State losing a seat in Congress after reapportionment.

Boswell inherited a larger swath of his electorate than did Latham, but Latham raised significantly more money.

If Boswell escapes with a win, as he has many times over his congressional career, Democrats still have to content with Steve King in the 4th CD if they want to sweep the state for the first time in history.

King is facing Christie Vilsack who is hoping to become the first woman in Iowa ever elected to Congress. Iowa is one of six states that has only elected men to the U.S. House - along with Alaska, Delaware, Mississippi, North Dakota, and Vermont.

King holds the advantage in demographics, but Vilsack nearly matched the Republican incumbent dollar for dollar in fundraising and has a very strong name recognition as the former First Lady of the state.

In Minnesota, the state could have three races decided by single digits for the first time since 1994 with Republican incumbents Chip Cravaack (MN-08), Michele Bachmann (MN-06), and John Kline (MN-02) facing strong DFL challengers.

Kline is expected to have the easiest path back to D.C. with Bachmann likely to eke out a win as she has done in past cycles (Bachmann had the narrowest margin of victory among winning GOP incumbents in 2008, and fifth narrowest in 2010).

In the 8th CD, Rick Nolan seeks to become the 10th Minnesota U.S. Representative to return to the U.S. House after a gap in service - although the largest such gap has only been 14 years (Nolan has been out of office for 32).

Pick-ups are not expected in North Dakota, South Dakota, or Wisconsin, although an unexpected Democratic surge could narrow the margin in Wisconsin's 7th and 8th districts to the single-digit range.

Smart Politics 2012 Upper Midwest U.S. House Projections

District
Projection
Status
IA-01
Bruce Braley
Democratic hold
IA-02
David Loebsack
Democratic hold
IA-03
Tom Latham
Republican pick-up*
IA-04
Steve King
Republican hold
MN-01
Tim Walz
Democratic hold
MN-02
John Kline
Republican hold
MN-03
Erik Paulsen
Republican hold
MN-04
Betty McCollum
Democratic hold
MN-05
Keith Ellison
Democratic hold
MN-06
Michele Bachmann
Republican hold
MN-07
Collin Peterson
Democratic hold
MN-08
Rick Nolan
Democratic pick-up
ND-AL
Kevin Cramer
Republican hold
SD-AL
Kristi Noem
Republican hold
WI-01
Paul Ryan
Republican hold
WI-02
Mark Pocan
Democratic hold
WI-03
Ron Kind
Democratic hold
WI-04
Gwen Moore
Democratic hold
WI-05
Jim Sensenbrenner
Republican hold
WI-06
Tom Petri
Republican hold
WI-07
Sean Duffy
Republican hold
WI-08
Reid Ribble
Republican hold
* This is an incumbent vs. incumbent matchup, in a district currently held by Democrat Leonard Boswell.

Follow Smart Politics on Twitter.

Previous post: Projections: 2012 U.S. Senate Races
Next post: Projections: 2012 Presidential Contest

Leave a comment


Remains of the Data

Which States Have the Longest and Shortest Election Day Voting Hours?

Residents in some North Dakota towns have less than half as many hours to cast their ballots as those in New York State.

Political Crumbs

Mary Burke: English First?

While multiculturalism and bilingualism are increasingly en vogue in some quarters as the world seemingly becomes a smaller place, one very high profile 2014 Democratic candidate does not shy away from the fact that she only speaks one language: English. In an attempt to highlight her private sector credentials working for Trek Bicycle, Wisconsin Democratic gubernatorial nominee Mary Burke boasts on her campaign bio page how she made great strides in international business dealings...while only speaking English: "Despite not speaking a single foreign language, she established sales and distribution operations in seven countries over just three years." Note: According to 2010 Census data, nearly half a million Wisconsinites over five years old speak a language other than English at home, or 8.7 percent, while 4.6 percent of Badger State residents do not speak English at all.


Does My Key Still Work?

Much has been made about Charlie Crist's political transformation from Republican to independent to Democrat en route to winning the Florida GOP and Democratic gubernatorial nominations over a span of eight years. Party-switching aside, Crist is also vying to become just the second Florida governor to serve two interrupted terms. Democrat William Bloxham was the first - serving four year terms from 1881 to 1885 and then 1897 to 1901. Florida did not permit governors serving consecutive terms for most of its 123 years prior to changes made in its 1968 constitution. Since then four have done so: Democrats Reubin Askew, Bob Graham, and Lawton Chiles and Republican Jeb Bush.


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