Nate has updated all three of his forecasts (Senate, House, Governor) in the last three days. The quick scorecard is as follows:
Senate 52 D, 48 R
House 204D, 230R
Governor 19D, 30R, 1I*
*technically, of the five independent candidates (CO, RI, ME, MN, MA), Nate gives the “field” a 50% chance. I’ve listed them in order of likelihood of winning the race, with Tancredo (CO) at 36% and Chafee (RI) at 34% the most likely I winners.
The Senate and Governor forecasts are, for me anyway, becoming old hat, and seem to be relatively stable. There’s been some movement on the Tancredo front in Colorado, but since I think he has no chance of winning, I’m going to ignore that one. Perhaps someone else would like to write up an article about the Governor’s races.
Rather, I’m interested in the House races, which still seem to be fluid.
Nate, Larry Sabato, and a number of other authorities have been predicting +47R (i.e. 208D, 227R) for some time now. Sabato, in particular, relies more on politicial science, while Nate tends to rely more on polling. Sabato will be out with a final forecast on Oct 28.
The “Votemaster” at electoral-vote.com has it at 205D, 207R with 23 tossups but I think he’s too conservative on the tossups. It looks to me like those will go R based on local and national factors so let’s call him 205D, 230R.
Nate does mention some volatility in his forecast: he sets the odds of larger gains at:
60 seats (195D, 240R) at 30%
70 seats (185D, 250R) at 12%
80 seats (175D, 260R) at 3%
No sane person is forecasting a 100-seat wave (i.e. 155D, 280R).
Nate sets the odds of Republican control of the House (i.e. at least 218R) at 80%.
My money is already on the Iowa Electronic Markets (IEM) at about $0.50 on the dollar. Right now, that seems a bad bet (I made it in June) but I can’t sell out, so I have to ride this one to the end. I’m cheered by the fact that I have a 20% chance of not losing my money, but I honestly think the Democrats have lost the House. The IEM has a Republican House takeover at 89% and a Republican Senate takeover at 16%, not far from where Nate puts it.
It looks increasingly like we will have a divided Congress (Republican House, Democratic Senate, Democratic President) for the first time since 1986, when we had the mirror image in each part of government: Democratic House, Republican Senate, and Republican President. It’s a rare event; the last time it happened before that was in 1932.