Congressional retirements could sink GOP - Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Congressional retirements could sink GOP under midterm 'blue wave'

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-WI, announced last week that he will not seek re-election. He is one of about 40 bowing out of public life. (Source: CNN) House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-WI, announced last week that he will not seek re-election. He is one of about 40 bowing out of public life. (Source: CNN)
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(RNN) – A bevy of retirements in the House and Senate may makes the 2018 midterms more competitive.

While incumbents are hard to beat, 57 of them in Congress are not seeking re-election, according to Ballotpedia. Of those, nearly 40 are dropping out of public life altogether, while the others are seeking further political office.

Of the 57, 40 are Republicans.

The political site FiveThirtyEight shows Democrats slightly ahead in an composite of polls of a generic ballot, which asks which party voters would support in an election.

Another factor that may spell trouble for the GOP: The incumbent president’s party tends to fare poorly in the midterms.

Experts said such a turn of events is particularly pronounced when the president’s approval rating is below water, as Trump’s has been throughout his presidency.

As of the week of April 2-8, Trump’s approval rating remained at 41 percent, with 54 percent disapproving of the job he is doing as president, according to Gallup. At no time has it rose above 50 percent, though it reached the crest – 45 percent – the week after his inauguration.

Trump’s approvals sunk to 35 percent four times during his presidency.

When the president's job approval rating is under 50 percent, “the party in the White House has lost, on average, 40 House seats and five Senate seats,” according to the Cook Political Report, an independent, non-partisan newsletter that analyzes national elections, campaigns and political trends.

In addition, 43 percent strongly disapprove of the president, according to the latest NBC/Wall Street poll, which may compel these people to vote in the midterms.

As of Friday, there are 44 more Republicans in the House than Democrats. In the Senate, the GOP advantage is slimmer, with 51 Republicans, 47 Democrats and two independents that caucus with the Democrats.

Copyright 2018 Raycom News Network. All rights reserved.

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