Republicans only need a net gain of four seats in the House to rest power from the socialist Democrats.
A growing number of House Republicans begin to doubt their chances of winning a big majority in the midterm elections, though, causing some allies of House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy to worry.
It is still believed by GOP lawmakers that they will be able to retake the House this fall – both due to historical trends in their favor – but new concerns have surfaced within the party that Democrats may be able to undermine the GOP’s gains.
Having a majority of GOP members is important to McCarthy’s ability to win the speakership and govern the Republican Conference.
There is trouble on the Democrat side, though.
Charlie Crist, a Democratic congressman from Florida, announced that he will resign as he faces Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis in November’s election.
As a result, Democrats will be able to hold fewer seats in the House before the midterm elections, which may complicate their legislative efforts.
“Today, I’m announcing my resignation from Congress. Casework operations will continue under the Office of Florida’s 13th Congressional District until newly elected members take office in 2023. It’s been a privilege to serve Pinellas in Washington. Read my full statement below,” Crist shared in a tweet that included a screenshot of his complete statement.
Today, I’m announcing my resignation from Congress. Casework operations will continue under the Office of Florida's 13th Congressional District until newly elected members take office in 2023.
It’s been a privilege to serve Pinellas in Washington. Read my full statement below. pic.twitter.com/z3j5oRLAvT
— Congressman Charlie Crist (@RepCharlieCrist) August 31, 2022
“I hereby resign my office as the Representative for Florida’s 13th Congressional District effective today,” he informed Nancy Pelosi in a letter.
It is likely that Republicans will flip Crist’s seat in the House, according to the nonpartisan Cook Political Report.
For Florida’s 13th Congressional District, Democrat Eric Lynn will face off against Air Force veteran Anna Paulina Luna, who is backed by Donald Trump.
DeSantis is likely to defeat Crist in November’s general election, and the GOP is likely to take his House seat as well.
After last week’s Florida primary, a new poll shows DeSantis ahead of Crist by 5 points.
“Impact Research released new polling that shows Gov. Ron DeSantis remains a favorite for re-election. He leads Democratic nominee Charlie Crist by 5 percentage points. But that 51% to 46% advantage is within the poll’s 3.5 percentage point margin of error, which applies to each candidate’s share of the vote,” the Florida Politics website reported.
“The survey finds DeSantis’ divisive reputation still could expose him to trouble in the General Election. That’s because independent voters strongly dislike the incumbent Republican. Voters without party affiliation break for Crist 52% compared to DeSantis’ 39%,” the report explained.
As soon as Crist won the primary last Tuesday, he made a series of divisive remarks that alienated a significant number of people.
“Those who support the governor should stay with him and vote for him, and I don’t want your vote,” Crist said emphatically. “I don’t want your vote.” “If you have that hate in your heart, keep it there!”
“I want the vote of the people of Florida who care about our state: good Democrats, good independents, good Republicans,” he continued, urging Florida citizens to unite despite his attacks on them. “Unify with this ticket. Unify with Val Demings and Charlie Crist. Unify with us. Those who are haters? You’re going to go off in your own world, and you better get right.”
Democrat nominee for Florida governor Charlie Crist attacks supporters of Gov. @RonDeSantisFL as "haters":
"I don't want your vote. If you have that hate in your heart, keep it there!” pic.twitter.com/n61dNpGSsN
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) August 24, 2022
Christina Pushaw, DeSantis’ campaign spokesperson, responded directly to Crist’s odd messaging strategy.
“It’s day one of the general election and Charlie is already asking people not to vote for him. That’s not exactly a winning strategy,” Pushaw stated.
“‘I don’t want your vote’ is quite the message for a Democrat politician who has been running for office for 30+ years,” Nathan Brand, Deputy Communications Director for the GOP, reacted.
"I don't want your vote" is quite the message for a Democrat politician who has been running for office for 30+ years. https://t.co/K1lnXVgUzw
— Nathan Brand (@NathanBrandWA) August 24, 2022
In response, Republican Sen. Josh Hawley’s press secretary Abigail Marone reminded the public that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said something similar back in 2016 in her “Basket of deplorables” speech.
Basket of deplorables moment https://t.co/NjF7EgaU2V
— Abigail Marone 🇺🇸 (@abigailmarone) August 24, 2022
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is campaigning for other Republican candidates as he readies for running for his own reelection.
Speculation that DeSantis might consider a run for the Republican nomination for president has not been confirmed, but DeSantis remains high in pools of Republican candidates.
Though former President Donald Trump is the front runner, eyes are on DeSantis as well for the future.
With all 435 seats in the House of Representatives up for election and as of August, 32 Democrats and 19 Republicans have announced that they will be retiring.
34 of the 100 Senate seats are on the ballot.
And, 36 out of 50 states will elect Governors.
As of now, the Democrat’s majority is slim in Congress.
The Senate is a 50-50 split, with Vice-President holding the tie-breaking vote, which gives Democrats the majority.
In July, polls suggested that Republicans would seize control of the upper chamber.
On Aug. 18, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters that there was “a greater likelihood that the House flips than the Senate.”