For the frustration of people who enjoy neatness, it is never as clean as one would like to consider one choice in relation to another. We tend to see elections as a broad indicator of how the electorate is moving nationally, but the electorate, which does not always want to stick to predicted borders, tends to swirl around and shift the direction in one direction, which blurs the clean drawn lines.
Let's review the house races this week based on a common standard: How has each district voted in the 2016 presidential election? A comparison of the margin between Democrats and Republicans in House with the margin between President Trump and Hillary Clinton is roughly a universal metric like ours, showing how the districts have changed over the last two years.
It may be obvious that after 2016, the country largely retreated to the left as the Democratic Party regained control of the house. But a map of shifts in contested house races makes it clear how broad this shift was.
The size of the squares depends on the size of the shift to one or the other party. Blue is a shift towards Democrats; to the Republicans.
At the time of writing – early in the morning after the election – the districts of the house shifted 3: 1 to the left: about 300 moved to the left and 100 to the right. In the Midwest and the South there are isolated exceptions and two solid layers that need to be considered.
The first is South Florida, where several Republican candidates fare slightly better than Trump two years ago. That does not mean the Republican won. One such district is the 26th of Florida that the Democrats have picked up on. Clinton won the district by a wide margin; the Republican incumbent, Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R), lost it narrower. A shift to the right, partly explained by the specific circumstances.
The other bag is California, where similar dynamics occurred in a number of races. However, there is an important additional factor: a large part of the votes still has to be counted, thanks to the generous electoral system of the state, which also takes a long time. Take these numbers with a little salt grit.
Where the country has become more democratic may be more interesting. Note Michigan, Iowa, Minnesota – generally the Midwest. This was the region that gave Trump the presidency, especially because of the narrow margins in Michigan and Wisconsin. In the three states in which Trump received the 78,000 votes that gave him the vote, there were 38 contested house races. The Democrats improved Clinton's performance in 28 of them.
The above card has a reservation. The Trump Clinton competition was a very specific race between two people. If there were places where Clinton was a particularly unpopular candidate, we could expect the district to move to the left if voters were able to vote for almost any other Democrat.
So let's compare the results of 2018 with 2012.
Here we get a better understanding of how the country has changed. The Midwest, and Ohio in particular, voted much more in favor of the Republicans in 2018 than six years ago. Many from Florida (which Barack Obama won in 2012), Central Valley in California, and parts of the New York Philadelphia Corridor in the northeast.
Overall, more districts moved to a more democratic than a Republican, albeit at a smaller distance than the change from 2016 to 2018.
In this respect, two states should be emphasized in particular. The first is Utah, where Mitt Romney scores particularly well in 2012. (And 2018, he was just elected Senator of this state.) The other is Texas, where a combination of a changing electorate and the insurgent campaign of Deputies Beto O & # 39; Rourke (D) has sparked a sharp rise in democratic voices in the country this year.
However, as compared to 2016, comparing results for 2018 with 2012 means that individual races will be compared to a choice between two specific candidates (as we see in the results from Utah).
In other words, we speak in large parts: in 2018, the country became more democratic, even in places where Trump showed unexpected strength in 2016.