2018 is the year Democrats are aiming to “flip the House.” With all 435 House of Representatives seats up for re-election, it’s the perfect opportunity for Democrats to garner support against President Trump and secure the House. With Republican leaders like Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Representative Trey Gowdy (R-SC) deciding not to run for re-election, gaining a Democratic House majority seems more plausible than ever. Currently, all of Massachusetts’ nine Congressional districts are represented by Democrats. In 2018, is there a chance any of the districts flip?
Although the candidate filing deadline isn’t until June, the race for fundraising and attention has already started. In District 1, encompassing mainly Western Massachusetts, the democratic incumbent Richard Neal is running for re-election. According to Open Secrets, Neal has raised 50 times more than his Democratic competitor. District 2, which is Central Massachusetts, has two Republicans and a Democrat challenging incumbent James McGovern. Here, the incumbent has also vastly out-raised all other candidates.
District 3 encompasses Northern Massachusetts where Representative Niki Tsongas will not be running for re-election. With no incumbent in the race, this has brought 13 aspiring representatives to the fundraising field so far. Leading the fundraising is Democrat Dan Koh, former chief of staff to Mayor Marty Walsh. Tons of other candidates are jumping into the race and are pretty well qualified: a former US ambassador to Denmark and a former Pentagon intelligence analyst, to name a few. With only two Republican candidates declared, it seems unlikely the district will flip red.
District 4 is much less exciting. Including cities like Brookline, the district is currently held by Representative Joe Kennedy. With no other candidates jumping into the race, it seems that it’ll be uncontested. Still, Kennedy has managed to raise over $2 million for the 2018 race. As a favorite of the Democratic Party and the one who gave the rebuttal to Trump’s last State of the Union, Kennedy won’t have too much to worry about.
In our district, number five, incumbent Katherine Clark is seeking re-election with no competitors. She has raised over half a million dollars and there doesn’t seem to be any worry about her losing. District 6 is interesting, but not for its race. Incumbent Democrat Seth Moulton faces two Republican challengers, both of whom have yet to fundraise even $10,000. Politico released a piece on Moulton discussing the possibility of him vying for the presidency. As a decorated army veteran with a fiscally moderate approach, there are some eyes on him for a 2020 presidential bid. Moulton will be a Democrat to keep eyes on in the upcoming years.
Districts 7 and 8 both face Democratic incumbents running for re-election, with only Democrats challenging them. Neither incumbent faces challengers who are out-fundraising them, and the races are guaranteed to swing blue. Lastly, District 9 has Democratic incumbent Bill Keating running again, with a Republican and Independent challenging him. But the ninth district will be holding a Republican Primary, which no other district is doing.
Even though all of the Massachusetts congressional districts are seemingly going to stay blue, it’s important to get involved. Uncontested or not, these elections still happen, and getting out to vote matters. Anyone can get involved in a campaign for a candidate they feel passionate for.