Next Tuesday, two years since his election shocked betting markets, Donald Trump will face the first meaningful electoral test of his presidency. Although his name is not on the ballot for local races across the country, the president’s omnipresence has come to define all US political matters. Whatever the result, it will be presented as a verdict on Trump.
Control of both Houses of Congress are on the line. All 435 districts for the House of Representatives are up for election, meaning Democrats need to gain 23 seats to win control and are currently rated favourites to do so.
With only 35 of 100 seats up for re-election, however, the battle for the Senate is very different. Republicans currently lead 51-47 – discounting two Dem-leaning Independents – and are rated likelier to gain rather than lose seats. Among their defences, only Nevada was carried by Hillary Clinton in 2016, whereas Democrats must defend ten states won by Trump.
Regarding the latter, it is essential to note the rules in Betfair’s Senate market. Here, a majority is defined as 51 seats, so the Democrats must gain four even though 49 would give them effective control, given the help of those two Independent Senators.
The implications of these elections, widely billed on the Left as the most important mid-terms ever, are profound. If Democrats do land the odds and take the House, they will use the power of subpoena to try to expose multiple layers of GOP (Republican Party) corruption. They could potentially empower numerous investigations against Trump and release information currently suppressed by GOP-led committees. Moreover, a good majority will give them the numbers to introduce impeachment charges.
The fundamental difference in dynamics between the House and Senate battles cannot be overstated. First, let’s deal with the House. I’ve consistently recommended backing the Democrats for this target since last December and have tripled down at an average of 1.81 for a total of 100 units.
I've just backed the Democrats to win a majority in the House of Reps next year at 1.88 expecting the odds to shorten. https://t.co/bRNKca2fi4
— Political Gambler (@paulmotty) December 13, 2017