Trump hurts GOP, but probably not enough to flip House

The House advantage has shifted steadily in favor of the Democrats since Trump won the GOP nomination, in the eyes of leading election handicappers.

Yet the Democrats still appear far short of flipping the 30 seats they’d need to win back the lower chamber. (The GOP’s 247 seats represents the party’s largest majority since before the Great Depression).

“In the House, I have yet to see evidence that Republicans are tanking as a result of Trump being on the ballot,” said David Wasserman, an expert on House races at the Cook Political Report.

Election analysts emphasize that a wave election delivering power back to the Democrats remains possible. But Wasserman put the odds at only between 10 and 20 percent, and predicts Democrats will pick up between 10 and 20 House seats –– far shy of the 30 needed to win back control.

That figure is consistent with other analyst predictions. Sabato’s Crystal Ball at the University of Virginia is forecasting Democratic gains of 10 to 15 seats; the Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report, yet another online election handicapper, is expecting “at least 10” with larger gains “certainly possible.”