Five Pa. House races to watch

By Emily Wolfe, Staff Writer

The 2016 presidential election came down to less than 1 percentage point in Pennsylvania — President Donald Trump won its 20 electoral votes by fewer than 100,000 votes. But the state’s congressional races looked much more lopsided, with two-thirds of the state’s 18 districts electing Republicans.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court struck down Pennsylvania’s congressional map earlier this year for not being representative, and the replacement map has made Pennsylvania a key battleground state for Democrats hoping to gain a majority in the House in Tuesday’s midterm election.

With the new map, the fact that midterm elections tend to favor the party out of power and the high level of Democratic engagement he’s seen this election, Vice President of Pitt College Democrats Alex Giorgetti is optimistic about Democrats’ chances in the midterms.

“There’s districts that just look … less gerrymandered, however you want to interpret that,” Giorgetti, a junior history major, said of the new map. “A lot more districts now favor Democrats than have in the past.”

Conor Guiser, the public relations director of Pitt College Republicans, agreed that the new map made it unlikely Republicans would pick up seats in Pennsylvania.

“But I think we would all be happy with seeing new congresspeople across the country who share our values, or at the very least respect them in the sense that Republicans and Democrats can work together,” Guiser, a junior economics and political science major, said.

FiveThirtyEight’s elections forecast, which has become the gold standard of election prediction, says Democrats are likely to win nine out of 18 seats in Pennsylvania in November, and could come away with as many as 11. Read more at The Pitt News

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