Wednesday, May 27, 2009

2010 Iowa Senate Races

The past few days both John Deeth and Bleeding Heartland took a look at the 2010 Iowa Senate Races after the Iowa Republican blog discussed the topic last week.

Democrats currently hold a 32-18 advantaged in the Iowa Senate, so Republicans would need to win 7 seats to draw even. The Iowa Republican concluded Republicans would pick up 3 of those races and would have a chance of gaining control of the Iowa Senate in 2012.

At Bleeding Heartland they take a look at the 7 races the Iowa Republican identified as the top targets for Republicans.

John Deeth starts with the 3 seat gain by Republicans and takes a closer look 2012 and specifically at the redistricting that will take place between 2010 and 2012.

That would put them at the short end of 29-21 in January 2011, and 2012 is a total crapshoot because the whole deck is shuffled by redistricting (I seem to be mixing my gambling metaphors). No one knows how the district lines will be drawn and how many seats will be up.

I followed this pretty closely in 2001-02, and redistricting years prompt more musical chairs than typical cycles. People realize their district looks bad, or that a run for another office looks good, or someone gets squeezed out in a backroom deal.

Some districts come up empty, with no incumbent living in the lines. Some come up with two or even three senators (as happened in current district 45, which explains Sandy Greiner's reluctant 2002 return to the House after a two-year visit to the Senate).
Basically, Republicans will likely gain a few seats in the Iowa Senate because there are more Democrats up for reelection. However, they won't win enough to take control. Then come 2012, it all depends on redistricting.

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