AL Advising

Philanthropic and Political Consulting

Philanthropy is like wine: good grapes plus good terroir makes good wine. Candidates and organizations are the grapes you wish to cultivate; they need care, pruning, monitoring, and yes, sometimes they need to wither on the vine. Terroir includes the resources you start with and what you can add such as mission, staff, and money.

AL Advising is the winemaker: we work with both donors and organizations to maximize impact.

My 2018 Predictions and Election Resources

OK, I’m putting it out there: I predict Democrats will net 37 House seats, 1 Senate seat (for a 50/50 split) and 10 Governorships. I think it will be a be a good night for Democrats. It could be a VERY good night. And I can’t even think about a bad night. See more details below.

(You can also read this on Medium)

US House

Dem pick-ups (36): AZ-2, CA-10, CA-25, CA-39, CA-45, CA-48, CA-49, CO-6, FL-26, FL-27, GA-6, IA-1, IA-3, IL-6, IL-13, IL-14, KS-3, KY-6, ME-2, MI-8, MI-11, MN-2, MN-3, NC-9, NJ-2, NJ-3, NJ-7, NJ-11, NM-2, NY-19, OH 12, PA-6, PA-7, TX-32, VA-10, VA-2, VA-7, WA-8.

Dem loss (1): MN-8

If pressed, I feel the least confident about CA-29, GA-6, IA-3, TX-32, and VA-7. I also think it’s possible that CA-21, CA-22, FL-25, NY-22, and PA-1 flip to Dems. So the net range could be as low as 32 or as high as 42. I based a lot of these on not only the prognosticators, money raised, and past electoral performance but also what else is on the ballot and the relative strength of outside groups and the state party. I think a lot of these districts in CA, IL, NJ, NY, PA, and VA will flip and never go back - the fundamentals of the districts are changing so rapidly. Others may be a one-termer or become perpetual battlegrounds.

US Senate

Dem pick-ups (2): AZ (Sinema), NV (Rosen)

Dem loss (1): ND (Heitkamp)

This map is just terrible for Democrats; everyone has been saying this for two years. The outcome I predict would produce a 50/50 split, with Republicans ultimately still in control as Vice-President Pence casts the tie-breaking vote. I am the least confident about McCaskill in MO and, to a lesser extent, Donnelly in IN. Keep an eye on Mississippi and a likely runoff election between Republican Cindy Hyde-Smith and Democrat Mike Espy.

Governors

Dem pick-ups (10): FL, GA, IL, IA, ME, MI, NV, NM, OH, WI. I am the least confident about GA (in all likelihood, it goes to a runoff), NV, and OH. I also think Kansas could flip to Democrats. I also think Democrats will pick up a significant number of down-ballot offices (like Secretary of State and Attorney General) and a large number of state legislative seats.

A few other things:

  1. Be prepared (emotionally and otherwise) for the Georgia Governor's race to come down to a runoff. If no candidate receives 50% (and there is a third-party candidate polling in low single-digits), a runoff election will be held on Dec. 4. 

  2. Keep an eye on Mississippi; control of the Senate may come down to a runoff election on Nov. 27.

  3. I also want to highlight the very real possibility that control of the House comes down to CA. Orange County could become Palm Beach 2.0. Check out this op-ed on Medium from former Congresswoman Ellen Tauscher. Politico also noted this problem: If the House comes down to California, get ready to wait. (Alternate headline: If comes down to CA, go to bed.)

    Ballots in CA need to be postmarked by Tues, 11/6 but received by Fri, 11/9. Counting here could take days if not weeks and several races could go to recounts. We need to be prepared for an onslaught of party activists and militiamen storming the Registrar of Voters offices, especially in Orange County, and be ready to fight back with messaging, activists, and lots of lawyers.

Resources

Bellweathers by Time Zone (courtesy of America Votes):

  • Eastern: VA-7, NC-9, FL-15, GA Gov, FL Gov, FL Sen

  • Central: TX-32, IL-6, IL-13, IA-3, IA-6, WI Gov

  • Mountain: NM-2, UT-4, MT-AL, AZ Sen, MT Sen

  • Pacific: CA-45, CA-48, CA-49, WA-8, Nev Gov, Nev Senate

A few of my favorites websites for tracking:

People to follow on Twitter:

  • @AP_Politics — the most important one for tracking races on Election Day

  • @NBCNews

  • @FiveThirtyEight

  • @nytpolitics

  • @UpshotNYT

  • @maggieNYT

  • @Redistrict

  • @mattyglesias

  • @jmartNYT

  • @gelliottmorris

  • @jaketapper

  • @pbump

  • @LarrySabato

  • @kkondik

  • @paulmitche11

  • @politicswolf

  • @ForecasterEnten

  • @ClareMalone

  • @Nate_Cohn

  • @taniel

  • @samstein

  • @AsteadWesley

  • @amyewalker

  • @alexburnsNYT

  • @TargetSmart

  • @TomBonier

  • @JoshVorhees

  • @catalist_us

  • @jennifereduffy

  • @claritycampaign

  • @davidradloff

  • @jhagner

  • @andybech

  • @scottlay

I predict Democrats will net 37 House seats, 1 Senate seat (for a 50/50 split) and 10 Governorships.