In what seems to be becoming an American tradition, there are still uncalled House seats eight days after the election. While The Democratic control of the House is solidly entrenched, the results of these races will determine just how much breathing room they have in passing their legislative agenda.
You may have noticed that different websites have varying tallies for the number of open seats and those controlled by Democrats and Republicans. We called several of those outlets to sort things out and here are the results:
Three races were called Wednesday:
- Democratic challenger Joe Courtney beat Republican incumbent Rep. Rob Simmons for the Connecticut 2nd district seat;
- Republican incumbent Dave Reichert fended off Democratic challenger Darcy Burner for the Washington 8th district seat;
- Republican incumbent Barbara Cubin fended off Democratic challenger Gary Trauner for the Wyoming at-large seat.
Six races remain too close to call:
- Florida - 13: Republican Vern Buchanan v. Democrat Christine Jennings for retiring Rep. Katherine Harris's old seat. Note: The Associated Press has called this race for Buchanan, but in light of the 400 vote difference and, ironically, the impending recount, we think that premature. The biggest source of headaches down there is the 18,000 electronic votes that seem to have disappeared.
- Georgia - 12: Rep. John Barrow (D-Ga.) v. Max Burns
- New Mexico - 01: Rep. Heather Wilson (R-N.M.) v. Patricia Madrid
- North Carolina - 08: Rep. Robin Hayes (R-N.C.) v. Larry Kissell
- Ohio - 02: Rep. Jean Schmidt (R-Ohio) v. Victoria Wulsin
- Ohio - 15: Rep. Deborah Pryce (R-Ohio) v. Mary Kilroy
Finally, two races are headed to special run-off elections:
- Texas - 23: Rep. Henry Bonilla (R-Texas) v. Ciro D. Rodriguez. The run-off is due to a court decision that threw out Bonilla's district, which was redrawn in 2003 under a plan drawn up by former Rep. Tom DeLay. Because Bonilla failed to win the race outright he must face Rodriguez, a former Democratic member of the House, in a runoff in December.
- Louisiana - 02: Rep. William Jefferson (D-La.) v. Karen Carter. Under Louisiana's system, the November elections are wide-open to all candidates and a runoff occurs if no one captures 50 percent of the vote.
That puts the current House total at 230 Democrats and 197 Republicans, with eight races left to go. We'll keep you posted at Congresspedia. If you're curious about the races that have been called, go to our Election 2006 homepage and click on a state to see its particular result, or check out one of these categories (note that we now have links to the 2006 campaign finance data from the Center for Responsive Politics, if you're curious to see who bankrolled the new members of Congress):