Nov 01 2010
There are tons of individual races which can be indicators of how the election will play out – but there is one state (mine of course) which will measure the level of the wave right after the polls close at 7 PM Eastern. These results may be earlier than most other states and will be a quick gauge for the rest of the evening. This is because the VA Democrat Congressman will fall based on the height of the GOP wave. Right now VA has a mix of 6 Democrats and 5 Republican Congress Critters:
R-VA1: Rep. Wittman
D-VA2: Rep. Nye
D-VA3: Rep. Scott
R-VA4: Rep. Forbes
D-VA5: Rep. Perriello
R-VA6: Rep. Goodlatte
R-VA7: Rep. Cantor
D-VA8: Rep. Moran
D-VA9: Rep. Boucher
R-VA10: Rep. Wolf
D-VA11: Rep. Connolly
No GOP candidates are at risk this cycle.
In a normal mid-term realignment I could see the GOP leaning districts (PIV of R+5) going back to the GOP. So if VA2 and VA5 go back to the GOP, and they are the only ones to go GOP, then the Dems have a chance to keep the House. This is just returning to the typical VA balance.
If the normally safe Rep Boucher in VA9 (R+11) loses, this would indicate a range where the GOP takes 45-55 seats. At this point control of the Senate is in play, but either side could win.
If we also see VA11 (D+2) go to the GOP, then we are firmly in the 60-70 seat pick up range. I believe that when you get to this point the Senate tips to the GOP simply because the sum of the house races have to impact the state-wide races.
If we see VA8 go to the GOP, we are in uncharted territory and the Dems are looking at a devastating Tuesday – where long shot senate races (DE & CT for example) go into the GOP column and we discuss this election for years to come.
I think we will see 4 of the VA dems lose (VA2, VA5, VA9 & VA11) tomorrow – this is one big wave. If Jim Moran also loses in VA8, then you can bet there will be a lot of surprise losses all night long. It would also leave only one Democrat left standing in the state of VA house caucus. And a message will have been sent, loud and clear.