While not all of the seats that the Democrats are leaving right now are competitive, some could still be taken by the GOP, as Democrats will be presenting fresh faces as replacements.
Long-time Republican lawmaker and House minority leader Kevin McCarthy have predicted that more Democrats will be announcing their retirements ahead of the campaign of 2022 midterms, as twelve Democrats have already stated that they won’t be running for re-election.
McCarthy believes that a new wave of announced retirements will come after the holiday season – Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s. In his interview with Fox News he suggested that after meeting with friends and families during their holidays and assessing the chances for re-election, many Democratic lawmakers will opt for either retirement or running for state offices, for example, governorships.
“Once you get past Thanksgiving and members go home, and they’re Democrats and they’ve been challenged before and they’re going to get beat up, Congress is not that great.”
Earlier, McCarthy suggested that the upcoming redistricting would also factor in some lawmakers’ decisions to avoid running for re-election. The Republican pointed out that due to the change, incumbent Democrats might have weaker support, as they will lose part of their voter base and new people whose hearts they have not yet won over will be in their place.
Two House Democrats, David Price of North Carolina and Mike Doyle of Pennsylvania, announced on 18 October that they will be retiring after Democrat John Yarmuth, who chairs the House Budget Committee, also announced that he wouldn’t be running for re-election. A total of seven House Democrats have announced future retirements, while five more will be seeking different offices.
While the exodus of experienced Democrats does not automatically translate to victories for the GOP, in some districts it might give them the edge they needed to prevail. This, in turn, might help the Republican Party with its ultimate goal for 2022 – flip both houses of Congress red. To do that, they need to win one seat in the Senate and five seats in the House.