We have a problem.
In 2016, everyone expects Democrats to have an outstanding year. It will have a high-profile presidential election, with good turnout among Democrats. In the race for the White House, Democrats have the advantage of a “blue wall” – a number of states on the East and West Coasts and Great Lakes that are not only very populous, but very unlikely to vote for a Republican. It may be a close election, but we are confident that another Democrat will be elected president in 2016.
For the Senate, the seats that are up for election that year are favorable to Democrats. Republicans will be on the defensive in Illinois, Iowa, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin – all states that voted twice for President Barack Obama, yet have a Republican senator up for reelection. Most experts predict that Democrats will retake the Senate in 2016.
The problem is the House of Representatives.
Even with truly record-setting Democratic performance in 2016, hardly anyone expects Democrats to win enough seats to retake control of the House of Representatives. The last presidential year was 2012, when President Obama won reelection. In 2012, more Americans voted for Democrats than for Republicans for the House – 1.4 million more – and yet, Republicans easily retained control.
How is that possible? Because the deck was stacked against us.
Every ten years we have a census to count the population of the United States, and every ten years, we must redraw congressional district lines to reflect changes in the population. Republicans used their control of redistricting in several key states to redraw the district lines to favor Republicans. Five key states – Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Virginia, and North Carolina – now lean Democratic, and yet elect a heavily Republican House delegation.
They have taken full advantage of their control of the House. They have blocked progressive initiatives that would slow climate change and protect voting rights. And any bill that protects the right to abortion or tackles discrimination based on sexual orientation is dead on arrival.
Knowing that they can never lose, House Republicans are becoming ever more extreme. They have repeatedly threatened to force a default on United States debt. They have already shut down the federal government more than once, stalling the economy. Even as I write this, they are threatening to shut down the Department of Homeland Security, to force President Obama to split up immigrant families and deport the parents of American children.
I hope you're ready to take action. Because this year is when we start fighting back, and start taking control of redistricting for Democrats.
In the arcane process of redistricting, the key elections in most states are still years away. But the key election to reverse Republican control of redistricting in Pennsylvania is coming right up – it's this November. When it comes to congressional district maps, Pennsylvania is the most skewed state in the country. It has voted for a Democrat for president in every election since 1992. However, after the census of 2010, Republicans controlled redistricting. They redrew the district map, and Pennsylvania now elects 13 Republicans, and just 5 Democrats to the House of Representatives. A fairer map would elect 13 Democrats and 5 Republicans – a fairer district map would elect 8 more Democrats to the House. This 8-seat difference would go a long way toward Democratic control of the House.
Make no mistake – this will be the most important election of the next decade. And our opponents know it just as well as you and I do. The Koch Brothers have just committed to a campaign in Pennsylvania this year. With billions of dollars at their disposal, and many Democrats inclined to stay home on election day this year, it will be tough.
Our latest newsletter, with some more information on the Koch Brothers in Pennsylvania, the pending interest rate hike by the Federal Reserve, an article discussing an important book about the Supreme Court, and our regular updates.
We need your help to fight back against Republican redistricting, and fight back against the Koch Brothers. With your help we can put a stop to extremism in Congress. Please, donate here now of whatever you can, today. Your donation now will help determine whether Republicans control Congress for the next 15 years.