Early analysis: 88 congressional battleground elections in 2020
In 2020, all 435 seats in the U.S. House and 34 of the 100 seats in the U.S. Senate are up for election. Our initial list of battleground races includes 88 of them—15 in the Senate and 73 in the House.
Battlegrounds are elections that we expect to have a meaningful effect on the balance of power in government or to be particularly competitive or compelling. We selected this initial list of 2020 races based on past election results or whether the incumbent is seeking re-election or was recently elected for the first time. We also considered race ratings from outlets like the Cook Political Report, Sabato’s Crystal Ball, and Inside Elections.
In the Senate, Republicans currently hold a 53-seat majority. Of the 34 seats up for election, Republicans are defending 22 seats while Democrats are defending 12. Ten battleground races are for seats held by Republicans and five are for seats held by Democrats. In 2018, Ballotpedia identified 16 battleground races—11 held by Democrats and five held by Republicans.
In the House, Democrats hold a 235-197 majority with one independent and two vacancies. Of our 73 battleground elections, Democrats hold 43 and Republicans hold 30. In 2018, Ballotpedia identified 82 battleground districts—73 held by Republicans and nine held by Democrats. Fifty-seven of the House races currently designated as battleground races for 2020 were also considered battleground races in 2018.
We expect both battleground lists to change as the 2020 election approaches.
Click here to learn more about U.S. Senate battlegrounds→
Click here to learn more about U.S. House battlegrounds→