The Democrats honestly believe they can take back the House of Representatives in 2018 despite needing 25 seats. Who knows if that will happen, but it’s a possibility they could put a dent into the GOP majority. After all, back in October, the Cook Political Report (CPR) changed ratings in 12 districts, showing vulnerability for the GOP.

Earlier today I blogged about Politico‘s list of top Senate races to watch. The publication did the same for the House and chose 10 of the important battles.

Illinois 6th District – Rep. Peter Roskam (R)

Being from Illinois this one caught my eye. My interest always peaks when the state has a Republican official, especially in the Chicago area. It’s always an area that doesn’t shock me when a Republican loses and Roskam could be the next victim. His district voted for failed Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in 2016 after it voted for Romney in 2012.

A handful of Democrats have thrown themselves into the primary, which could cause some problems for the party. Former Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee deputy executive director Ian Russell told Politico that “suburban voters have been drifting away from the GOP for years” and claimed President Donald Trump “accelerated this movement” and believes the tax bill “will only further alienate them.”

This may not apply to Roskam since he plans on campaigning on the tax bill. Plus, remember in 2006 when the Democrats swarmed the House and Senate? Roskam was one of the Republicans to survive that purge.

Roskam has made a few changes in his views, maybe to appease his voters since they chose Hillary. He has changed his mind on Trump’s tax returns and said the president should release them. He also went after Trump for his remarks after the violence in Charlottesville, VA, saying that “the president … should be a uniquely unifying figure and there were neo-Nazi groups and racists and anti-Semites who were finding comfort in his words, and it’s his responsibility to deny them that comfort.”

Utah 4th District – Mia Love (R)

The CPR also included Love’s district in its October report, thinking that Trump’s unpopularity could be her undoing in Utah. She could face Salt lake county Mayor Ben McAdams, who won in 2012 even though at the same time the Mormon Republicans pushed Romney for the presidency: Romney won the county with 60% of the votes while McAdams received 55% in his race. He has said that he has “a reputation as someone who gets things done by working across party lines.

McAdams reiterated that stance when he announced his candidacy when he said he would even work with Trump, even though he considers the president as “overly divisive.”

CPR changed the district from strong Republican to likely Republican, noting McAdams’ strengths:

In a major coup for Democrats, Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams is on the verge of running against Love. McAdams, 42, won the top county office in 2012 and 2016 and already represents 85 percent of UT-04 (although UT-04 is much more Republican than the county). McAdams has built a unique brand as a wonky, nerdy Mormon Democrat, raised over $1 million in past races and cultivated relationships with Republican mayors.

McAdams, an attorney, will likely focus on local needs like transportation and infrastructure funding and paint Love as an inaccessible obstructionist who has sided with the Tea Party over Salt Lake’s business community on issues like reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank. His allies contend he’ll be harder to pigeonhole as “Nancy Pelosi’s dream” than Love’s previous opponents because voters already know him as a pragmatist.

Florida 26th District – Carlos Curbelo (R)

Hillary won this district by 16 points, which is represented by Carlos Curbelo, a moderate Republican. He won his reelection even though outside groups spent over $6 million in negative ads against him. It helped that he has distanced himself from Trump, but Politico doesn’t know if that will work this time around.

Support for Curbelo may have strengthened more in November after the all Democrat Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CBC) rejected his membership bid even though he’s Cuban American and “represents a latino-heavy district.” The members called his request political, but someone should give them a mirror because apparently they rejected him because the party wants his seat.


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