Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee

State of the States (Week of December 1st, 2016)

DLCC Executive Director Jessica Post: "We're already talking about ways we can get to a stronger economic message. I think we also need to make sure we're recruiting strong candidates. I think we did that in the 2016 cycle. Many of them are stepping up to run again. But there's many more people that are coming out of the woodwork that want to run for their state legislatures and make some meaningful changes."

WI: "The judges determined that the radically gerrymandered maps were drawn by the Republicans in a manner that was 'intended to burden the representational rights of Democratic voters throughout the [10-year] period by impeding their ability to translate their votes into legislative seats.'"

NC: "Today Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee Executive Director Jessica Post lauded last night’s federal court ruling that directs the legislature to draw new statehouse district maps by March 15, 2017, and to hold elections in the new districts in November."

State of the States (Week of November 18th, 2016)

"Democrats ended Republican majority control of at least four legislative chambers, including: the Nevada Assembly, the Nevada Senate, the New Mexico House, and the Alaska House."

"The reason is not just that state legislatures and governors make laws that affect people's lives, but that what happens in states feeds into national politics. For instance, when the Supreme Court guts the Voting Rights Act, it's Republican state legislatures that go on a voter suppression spree, putting up barriers to African-Americans and other likely Democrats getting registered and getting to the polls. That means fewer Democratic members of Congress get elected, and the Democratic presidential candidate has a tougher time. And the circle goes round and round."

"Among the 86 chambers that held elections in 2016, Democrats gained control of four while Republicans secured power in three, leaving Republicans in charge of 68 chambers and Democrats just 31. Republicans gained total control over the legislature in Minnesota, Iowa, and Kentucky, while Democrats did the same in Nevada and New Mexico. Democrats also broke the Republican grip on the legislature in Alaska to produce a divided government between the two chambers there. The map at the top of this post details exactly which chambers changed hands."

"In 2014 and 2016, Democrats received more votes in the State House races, yet Republicans hold a huge 63-47 majority and push a deeply conservative agenda that a majority of voters don't want."

DLCC 2016 Election Analysis

While Democrats running for state legislative office fell short of this cycle’s high expectations, Democratic power in state legislatures actually increased. While Republicans gained majorities in just three legislative chambers, Democrats won majorities in at least four. Additionally, Democrats expanded our majorities and added seats in a number of states.

State of the States (Week of November 3rd, 2016)

"The top of the ticket is top of mind as Michigan House Republicans aim to keep their margins while Democrats angle to flip nine seats and take the majority."

"The Republican Party's grip on U.S. state legislatures could loosen in next month's election as Democrats seek to link Republican candidates to the sinking fortunes of the party's White House candidate, Donald Trump."

State of the States (Week of October 27th, 2016)

"But with Donald J. Trump’s stumbles raising alarms for Republicans down the ballot, Democrats hope that a resounding win at the presidential level will translate to significant gains in capitals in Minnesota, Colorado, Nevada, New Hampshire and beyond. President Obama, who has endured gridlock in Washington as Republicans in the states took direct aim at his vision and legacy, is stepping in to assist more than 150 state legislative candidates, by far his biggest effort to bolster local Democrats since he took office."

"Democrats are hoping for an anti-Donald Trump wave to give them more of a defense against 2018 midterms that most expect will be tough for the party if Hillary Clinton wins. With Obama’s approval rating climbing — to 57 percent in the Gallup poll out Saturday — they’re hoping that hitching themselves to the president will make the difference. He’s also expected to hit close to 60 endorsements for House races this week, taping commercials and robocalls for many of them."