Posted on November 06, 2013
FairVote's Monopoly Politics 2014 and the Fair Voting Solution report, presented below in the form of an interactive map and links to analysis and state profiles, is an important resource for understanding U.S. House elections as they are and as they could be with a simple statutory change that would open every corner of the country to meaningful two-party competition and fair representation. We project November 2014 winners in more than 370 of 435 House races using a methodology that will allow us to predict 2016 winners in an even greater number of districts on November 6th -- only two days after the 2014 election.
The report presents our projections, in-depth analysis of problems with congressional elections as they are, and our 50-state plan for electing Congress using ranked choice voting, a fair representation voting system designed for multi-seat districts. The Flashmap below displays the partisan split, competitiveness, and racial representation of congressional districts and allows users to compare these measurements with the results of a fair representation voting system. Each state page links to a detailed profile with information on every 2014 House race.
Projections and data for all 435 congressional districts are regularly updated, and can be downloaded or viewed online. Users also can also use our model to make their own projections, by adjusting the values in two cells: one determines the national preference between the major parties (we use a 50-50 projection), and the other determines the average advantage earned by incumbents (we give an average "incumbency bump" of 4.5% in winning percentage). Our model projects sure winners in more than 85% of House races using a cautious methodology that achieved 100% accuracy in 2012, when our Monopoly Politics 2012 projections projected winners in 333 races.
Here is a summary of our latest projections for the 435 seats at stake in the 2014 U.S. House elections, as of July 8, 2014: Safe Republican: 199 seats (45.7%), Safe Democrat: 151 seats (34.7%); Lean Republican: 29 seats (6.7%); Lean Democrat: 31 seats (7.1%); and Tossup: 25 seats (5.7%). Republicans in a 50-50 election are likely to increase their 54-46% edge in House seats, while Democrats would not be likely to win a majority without having the support of more than 56% of voters. Fewer than 15% of seats have the potential to be competitive, while the actual number of close races will be far smaller. Adoption of a fair representation system, as outlined in the report, is the only way to eliminate this partisan distortion and ensure that every voter is able to participate in a meaningful contest in every election.
Part 1: The Power of Monopoly Politics
- Monopoly Politics & the 2014 Horserace: The Fight for a House Majority, Vulnerable Incumbents, and Open Seats
- The Dominance of Partisanship in Winner-Take-All House Elections
- The Rise of Safe Seats: The Relative Impact of Redistricting and "The Big Sort"
- Partisanship Trumps Campaign Spending in Congressional Elections
- Districts on the Move: Exceptions to the Rule of Partisanship Consistency
Part 2: The Problems of Monopoly Politics
- Partisan Bias in the U.S. House: The Republican Advantage from Demographics, Partisanship, Incumbency, and Gerrymandering
- The Polarization Crisis: The Decline of Crossover Representatives and Crossover Voting
- Winner-Take-All in the South: The Great Southern Partisan Reversal, 1991-2013
Part 3: The Solution to Monopoly Politics
- Extending the Sphere of Representation: The Impact of Fair Representation Voting on the Ideological Spectrum of Congress
- Electing Candidates with Fair Representation Voting: Ranked Choice Voting and Other Methods
- Enhancing African American Voting Rights in the South with Fair Representation Voting
- Model Fair Representation Voting Act
- Literature Review
- Projections, partisanship, and other data for all 435 districts
- Monopoly Politics 2012, Fair Voting 2012, and accompanying flash map
- Fixing Democracy infographic series
- PowerPoint presentation: Applying Ranked Choice Voting to Congressional Elections
- Videos on fair representation voting and FairVote's Reform 2020 vision
- More information on redistricting, fair representation, and multi-seat ranked choice voting
- U-Richmond Law Review: "How Choice Voting Will End Gerrymandering and Expand Minority Voting Rights, From City Councils to Congress" by FairVote executive director Rob Richie and staff attorney Drew Spencer
- February 2014 report on Redistricting Reform in the South
- Single-member district reform using the Top Four form of ranked choice voting