House Race Ratings – October 3rd; Republican Advantages Growing in Toss-Up Races

The Republican money advantage and smart candidates who have real local ties is beginning to pay off for the GOP in marginal seats. Even though we are not moving any seats this week, in several “toss-up” elections the GOP is beginning to have an advantage which may necessitate a move next Wednesday.

HD-7

Halsey Beshears money advantage and the lack of Democratic Party help for Robert Hill mean this seat is edging towards the Republicans. However, we hesitate to move to because in large portions of this district the Republicans last won a race for State Representative during the reconstruction era. Like many rural southern seats in the last thirty years, once the GOP captures the district they hold it forever. But many of these areas still have not voted for a Republican at this level and are filled with state workers. We will concede that we are being cautious about this seat.

HD-21

Rep. Keith Perry is proving to be a stronger opponent for Andrew Morey than many expected. Still this seat is a toss-up with Perry holding a slight edge based on his fundraising ability and the somewhat less than committed effort the FDP is making here.

HD-30

Rep. Scott Plakon’s local ties, focused campaign and money has earned him a slight edge in this Democratic leaning district. Plakon has also (for now) successfully redirected the debate away from his conservative votes and statements and towards some of his bi-partisan achievements. Kathy Castor-Dentel needs to refocus her message after a strong start that has faded.

HD-69

Kathleen Peters looks poised to potentially pull away from Josh Shulman in this very tight race in a marginal Pinalls County district. But the Florida Democratic Party has chosen to go negative with this spot they paid for.

Peters has received an impressive run of endorsements in this wing district. The question is will this FDP ad on behalf of Peters refocus the debate? Quite possibly.

One seat that does appear to be trending towards the Democrats is HD-68 where Dwight Dudley’s impressive campaign continues to put Frank Farkas and Florida Republicans to the sword. Dudley is a good candidate and Farkas has plenty of baggage. That having been said, Dudley is in good shape because he is running a tight, disciplined, and smart campaign.

Full ratings after the jump.

Leans Rep Likely Rep Safe Rep  Leans NPA
HD 24 (Open) HD 27 (Open) HD 1  (Ingram)  HD 34 (Smith)
HD 29 (Dorworth) HD 51 (Crisafulli) HD 2  (Broxson)
HD 35 (Schenk) HD 58 (Open) HD 3   (Ford)
HD 41 (Wood) HD 65 (Nehr) HD 4   (Gaetz)
HD 50 (Open) HD 77 (Open) HD 5  (Coley)
HD 53 (Tobia) HD 93 (Moritas) HD 6   (Patronis)
HD 55 (Open) HD 10  (Porter)
HD 59 (Open) HD 11 (Adkins)
HD 71 (Boyd) HD 12 (Ray)
HD 72 (Pilon) HD 15 (Davis)
HD 85 (Rooney) HD 16 (McBurney)
HD 17 (Renuart)
HD 18 (Open)
HD 19 (Van Zant)
HD 22 (Open)
HD 23 (Baxley)
HD 25 (Open)
HD 28 (Brodeur)
HD 31 (Nelson)
HD 32 (Metz)
HD 33 (O’Toole)
HD 36 (Open)
HD 37 (Corcoran)
HD 38 (Weatherford)
HD 39 (Open)
HD 40 (McKeel)
HD 44 (Precourt)
HD 52  (Workman)
HD 54  (Mayfield)
HD 56  (Albritton)
HD 57 (Open)
HD 60 (Young)
HD 64 (Grant)
  HD 73 (Steube)HD 74 (Holder)
HD 75 (Roberson)
HD 76 (Open)
HD 78 (Open)
HD 79 (Open)
HD 80 (Hudson)
HD 82 (Open)
HD 83 (Harrell)
HD 103 (Open)
HD 105 (Trijillo)
HD 106 (Passidomo)
HD 110 (Oliva)
HD 111 (Open)
HD 116 (Open)
HD 118 (Artiles)
HD 119 (Nunez)
Toss Up
HD 7  (Open)
HD 21 (Perry)
HD 30 (Plakon)HD 42 (Open)
HD 47 (Open)
HD 63 (Harrison)HD 66 (Ahern)
HD 67 (Hooper)
HD 68  (Open)
HD 69  (Open)
HD 89 (Hager)
HD 112 (Open)HD 114 (Fresen)
HD 115 (Bileca)
HD 120 (Open)
Safe Dem Likely Dem Leans Dem
HD 8 (Williams) HD 43 (Open) HD 9 (Rehwinkel-Vasilinda)
HD 13 (Fullwood) HD 62 (Cruz) HD 49 (Open)
HD 14  (Jones) HD 86 (Pafford) HD 84 (Open)
HD 20 (Open) HD 90 (Berman)
HD 26 (Taylor) HD 104 (Open)
HD 45 (Open)
HD 46 (Open)
HD 48 (Open)
HD 61 (Reed)
HD 70 (Rouson)
HD 81 (Open)
HD 87 (Open)
HD 88 (Open)
HD 91 (Slosberg)
HD 92 (Clarke-Reed)
HD 94 (Thurston)
HD 95 (Rogers)
HD 96 (Waldman)
HD 97 (Open)
HD 98 (Open)
HD 99 (Schwartz)
HD 100 (Gibbons)
HD 101 (Open)
HD 102 (Open)
HD 107 (Watson)
HD 108 (Campbell)
HD 109 (Stafford)
HD 113 (Open)
HD 117 (Open)

No Toss Ups -Leans R

HD 7  (Open)

HD 21 (Perry)

HD 30 (Plakon)

HD 47 (Open)

HD 66 (Ahern)

HD 67 (Hooper)

HD 69 (Open)

HD 89 (Hager)

HD 112 (Open)

HD 114 (Fresen)

HD 115 (Bileca)

No Toss Ups – Leans D

HD 42 (Open)

HD 63 (Harrison)

HD 68  (Open)

HD 120 (Open)

If we assign the toss-ups as we have above the new chamber would be 78-42 GOP, a gain of three seats for the Democrats but nowhere near the potential gains for the party given the competitiveness of the new map. Still, with five weeks left until the election, the Democrats could close in several of the other toss-up seats that we’ve assigned to the GOP being in a position to flip. But lack of funds and an undisciplined campaign plan seems to be dogging the Democrats. The party lost a candidate in the very winnable HD-27 and have to this point failed to spend adequately in several other toss-up seats to compete with built in GOP advantages. Then their are the special interest groups like AIF, Home Builders and the Florida Chamber who are spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on House races mostly to boost struggling incumbent Republicans. Sadly for the Democrats, the incremental strategy of picking up seats gradually and eventually winning back the House (by 2016 or 2018) seems unlikely to get the big boost once hoped this cycle. The Democrats will pick up a net of seats on November 6th. But the 10-12 seat gain that seemed possible when the House map was approved now seems likely to be 3-5 seats.

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3 thoughts on “House Race Ratings – October 3rd; Republican Advantages Growing in Toss-Up Races

  1. The District 7 race is pretty much done. Others may be finished after Obama’s embarrassing debate performance tonight.

  2. Pingback: Sunburn for 10/4 — A morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics | Saint Petersblog

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