Larry Sabato’s Crystal Ball Report, published by the University of Virginia Center for Politics, is out with the final ratings for the major races in Wisconsin. It’s not great news for Republicans.
The Crystal Ball, written by Kyle Kondik and Larry Sabato, says the Wisconsin gubernatorial race “Leans Democratic.” Republicans could have a net loss of nine governorships overall, including Wisconsin. However, Wisconsin is one of three races that could throw that projection off.
“While we think the GOP could claw back one or two of these states — Iowa, Kansas, and Wisconsin are the picks we’re the least confident in – we thought the data and the year’s overall trends pointed to the Democrats in each of these states individually,” the report said. “Besides the national environment, there may just be a fatigue with eight years of conservative GOP rule in places like Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin, particularly in a time of conservative governance in Washington. The public is idiosyncratic and often wants what it doesn’t have; the same dynamic helped Trump win many states in the Midwest after eight years of a liberal Democratic president.”
The last Marquette University Law School Poll showed Governor Scott Walker (R) and Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers (D) tied. However, other polls have showed Evers slightly ahead.
Not surprisingly, the Crystal Ball Report also rates the U.S. Senate race in Wisconsin as “Leans Democratic.” Polls have consistently showed the incumbent Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D) ahead of her challenger state Sen. Leah Vukmir (R-Brookfield). Baldwin has been able to substantially outspend Vukmir who had to survive a contentious primary.
However, Republicans are expected to hold onto the Senate, according to Kondik and Sabato.
In the House, Republicans are expected to hold onto the open seat in the 1st congressional district which is now rated “Leans Republican.” The race has gained national attention as the Democrats hoped to take the seat held by Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, who announced his retirement earlier this year. The Democrats nominated Randy Bryce, a former iron worker who is now a paid Democratic consultant with a very troubled past of arrests, missing child support, missing court dates, and debts that were mysteriously paid after he entered the race. The Republicans chose Bryan Steil, a former aide to Ryan who is now an attorney for a manufacturer in the district and a member of the University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents.
The House rate of note is Wisconsin’s 6th congressional district where the incumbent Rep. Glenn Grothman (R) faces Dan Kohl, the nephew of former U.S. Senator Herb Kohl and a lobbyist in Washington D.C. Crystal Ball rates the race as “Likely Republican.”
Kondik and Sabato project the Republicans to lose control of the House of Representatives, with Democrats picking up 34 seats, 11 more than the 23 needed to become the majority party.