To what extent vulnerable House Republicans will be negatively affected by Thursday’s passage of an Obamacare replacement bill can’t be known just yet, considering the midterms aren’t for another year and a half.
But after months of rowdy town halls, competitive special elections in Republican territory, and President Trump’s approval rating mired in the low 40s, the health care vote is unlikely to help the significant swath of the conference that already had serious reelection challenges on their hands.
In the near term, the vote will undoubtedly only add to the onslaught of Democratic candidates stepping forward to run, including for seats long held by Republicans—which is critical for capitalizing on a midterm cycle with the potential for wave conditions.
The spotlight is on the 14 Republicans in districts carried by Hillary Clinton who voted for the bill. Daily Kos Elections pointed out that—excluding Utah—10 more Republicans who supported it are in districts Trump won with less than 50 percent.
Twenty-four happens to be the exact number of seats Democrats must net to win the House majority, though that doesn’t take into account Georgia’s 6th, which Trump carried with 48 percent and Democrats hope to pick up in a special election next month.
— Kyle Trygstad