November 24th, 2009
01:55 PM ET
5 years ago

41 is the crucial number in 2010 battle for the House

Washington (CNN) - In the battle for Congress, 41 is the crucial number. That's the number of seats the Republicans need to win back from the Democrats in next year's midterm elections to take control of the House of Representatives.

Next November, all 435 seats in the House, where Democrats hold an 258-177 advantage, are up for grabs. After winning back Congress in the 2006 contests and increasing their majorities in the 2008 elections, the Democrats will be playing defense next year. Making matters tougher for the Democrats, the country's political landscape has changed this year, mostly to the benefit of Republicans. But will it be enough to get them to 41?

"President Barack Obama's standing has weakened, Democrats are on the defensive on the economy, spending and health care, and key midterm voting groups, including seniors and Independents, are moving away from the Democrats and toward the GOP," says Stuart Rothenberg, editor and publisher of the nonpartisan Rothenberg Political Report.

Of the 39 House Democrats who earlier this month voted against their party's health care reform bill, 31 come from districts that Sen. John McCain won in last year's presidential election. Of the remaining eight, six come from districts in which Obama won less than 55 percent of the vote.

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Filed under: 2010 • Congress
soundoff (42 Responses)
  1. Robin

    Republicans will win the 41 seats needed.

    November 24, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  2. Jimmy James

    If the job market doesn't improve and the economy show real signs of repair then the Democrats are in trouble. Health Care is not the #1 issue in this country neither is the climate. The Democrats have wasted too much time on both. They better get back to the Clinton way of thinking " It's the economy stupid" or end up losing a large number of seats. Maybe not enough to lose control but enough to make the ones who barely win rethink their priorities for the next 2 years.

    November 24, 2009 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  3. Dave

    The more spending on issues that are not for jobs and on other irrelevant (at this point) issues, combined with failure to do anything for the people, and other continued insensitivities at the WH (Bush third term ongoing, as it is now) the more likely the 41 seems doable for Republicans.

    November 24, 2009 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  4. Reagan was wrong

    And here comes the slew of platitudes....

    "America is waking up"
    "How are hope and change working for ya?"
    "Socialism!"

    Being a psychic in a red state must be the easiest job in the world.

    November 24, 2009 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  5. Lauren from Tallahassee, FL

    I think this article is a little bias. I don't believe the democrats are playing defense on the economy at all. The republicans policies/politics was what got the country into this mess and now the evidence is showing that the democrats are getting us out of it. I disagree heavily with this article.

    November 24, 2009 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  6. Sea.gem

    The key number which isn't often mentioned by CNN is 2006..Dems have had control for a while now...ie the beginning of the Financial Mortgage based meltdown (Fannie Mae)...their boys are still in charge there...this rampant group who wanted to investigate everything Bush did have had a fun time sweeping their major responsibility under the rug...Frank and Dodd are both on these committees which misrepresented the state of the govt lending institution...and oh, big surprise, stil in office...nice smokescreen Dems...

    November 24, 2009 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  7. Vic of New York

    I disagree with much of this article.

    What is weakening Democrats in Congress is the same non-decisive malaise that got voters sick of the Republican Congress during the Bush Administration.

    You'd think the "Conservative" Democrats would get the point. People hate Congress because nothing gets done. Don't blame the President. Now they're wringing their hands and tucking their tails at Republican lackeys and the likes of John "Boner".

    If the Democrats can't get their act together – I'LL BE THE FIRST TO VOTE THEM OUT!

    November 24, 2009 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  8. karen

    And what have the republicans done to deserve this? NOTHING!! this is amerca for you....a bunch of impatient, whinny, brats....Mitt Romney was correct after all it seems.

    November 24, 2009 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  9. Right wingnuts are the darlings of dementia

    I wonder if all republicans elected next year will support the new communist policies platform of the republican party.

    November 24, 2009 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  10. Sarah Palin/Liz Cheney 2012'

    Obama is ONE and DONE. Start the drumbeat.

    November 24, 2009 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  11. Keith in Austin

    It will be a true cakewalk!

    November 24, 2009 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  12. Fitz in Texas

    The Republicans will win these seats back from the Democrats. The American people see how these Democrats are destroying our country and will vote them out of office in order to stop them.

    November 24, 2009 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  13. Saul Virginia

    I am not particularly impressed with the democrats right now, But i don't know why people think voting republicans in who put us in this mess for 8 years is the answer.

    It is just pathetic!!

    November 24, 2009 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  14. Clown Show

    I am still happy that President Obama was elected. I told many that despite this victory, it would mean little in terms of change in regards to the rediculous way the Senate and House behave. Both DEM and REPUB politicians are selfish and SOLD OUT. I am a DEM, and feel totally stabbed in the back as should Mr. Obama. Very little courage has been showed by the DEMS, and the Repubs never cared who goes down to begin with.

    November 24, 2009 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  15. Come on 2010!

    That day can't get here fast enough. The question is, How much damage will the democrats do before that day comes. Hopefully, not too much.
    Keep praying for our country in the mean time.

    November 24, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  16. charlie in Maine

    Pay close attention Democrats. This nightmatre senario only comes true if you don't stick together and pass healthcare. Jobs will increase as new businesses crop up, the economic worries of most will melt away. Don't worry insurance companies. You will find a way you always do. The party of NO will be out of power for a few decades just like they were after, Social Security passed, and Medicare and every other major step forward this country has taken without them.

    November 24, 2009 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  17. Kitchen Police

    I can't believe the country is dumb enough to turn around and vote for the lizards that got us in this mess to begin with. The Dems are trying to make a difference elect more of them and keep the lizards out of Congress.

    November 24, 2009 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  18. Mike in MN

    Obama and the Democrats are a disaster.
    A 800 billion dollar stimulus bill that is not stimulating or creating the jobs promised. Followed up by wild claims that it is creating jobs. Followed up by inacurate and false jobs created claims on Obama government created web site. Followed up by an Obama refusal to correct the false jobs claims on the web site. Unbelievable!
    Massive growth in government, goverment spending and deficits with little improvement in the economy and no jobs.
    Obama pretending now to show concern about the deficits after poking fun of and demonizing Tea Party patriots for saying the same thing months earlier. Appaling!!
    Trying to cram a health care bill down the throats of voters they do not want.
    Zero leadership from Obama on war in Afganistan.
    Over a trillion dollars spent on bailouts on banks and auto companies coupled with partial government ownership of same banks and auto companies.
    Voters have had enough. Obama and the Democrats are out in 2010 and 2012.

    November 24, 2009 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  19. Jersey

    The only hope for the country to stop Obama's destruction is to get rid of the liberals in Congress, regardless of party.

    November 24, 2009 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  20. Jeff

    If "seniors and independents" are indeed beginning to lean towards a return to a Republican majority in Congress then it is now time to continue mobilizing efforts to register young voters and encourage them to vote. Even younger people with only half a brain would never vote for a Republican. It's time to build a strong young voter block to counter ill-informed, propaganda blind, paranoid older (mostly white) voters who are used by the Republicans as pawns. And for those who say the Democrats have controlled Congress since 2006, and what have they accomplished? Almost all of the legislation they tried to pass was either vetoed by Fascist Dictator Bush or filabustered. And now the Republicans are 100% obstructionists for what a majority of Americans want.

    November 24, 2009 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  21. mike

    lets put the republicans back in office iran here we come and healthcare
    for the insurance companies you think your taxes are going to go down
    forget that you will be at war FEAR FEAR FEAR FEAR thats how you play the game jobs go military

    November 24, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  22. SLM

    Shouldn't be too hard to do. Americans are waking up the nightmare they put in office and will correct that mistake in 2010. Only the freeloaders support Obama and his socialist agenda.

    November 24, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  23. Joshua College Station Texas

    Why does this have to be about Democrat or Republican control? Why can't it be about picking the best candidate who represents the issues we believe in?

    Regardless, I would be very suspicious to vote for any Republican whose campaigns strongly on getting elected in order to increase the power of the Republican party. We already tried that and saw where it led us. Big mistake.

    It's not about the majority, it's about the issues!

    November 24, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  24. Lynne

    No wonder decades go by without the American gov't ever actually doing anything. It isn't about governing or legislating but about electioneering from one election to another. No other country in the world is as fixated on elections except America while nothing changes from decade to decade!!

    November 24, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  25. ib

    If they don't wise up and stop this out of controll spending and stop trying to ram a gov. total controll of health care down our throats they will be vote out in 2010. I only wish it was Dec. 2009 we could vote them out. 2010 is to far off; they can continue doing more damage to this country.

    November 24, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
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