Republicans had a strong showing in congressional elections on Tuesday, backed by a clear majority of voters at the polls. Over a year before this November’s election—and the campaigning that led up to it—FairVote made its 2014 US House projections as part the biennial . FairVote projected the outcome of 368 of the 435 House races: 205 to Republican Party candidates and 163 to Democratic Party candidates (see here for a more detailed analysis).
While provisional and mail ballots are still being counted, FairVote can confidently say that we were 99.7% accurate in our projections of 2014 US House races. This accuracy was achieved despite the fact that we made our projections in mid-2013 based only on the 2010 and 2012 election results in each district and the presence of an incumbent.
Using the same methodology, FairVote will project outcomes for the November 2016 election on November 6, 2014, just two days after this year’s election.
The single error in our projections was in New York’s 24th district. FairVote projected the Democratic Party candidate, Dan Maffei, would win with over 58% of the vote. Few figured NY-24 was in play until the last week of the election campaign. The Republican Party actively targeted NY-24, especially Syracuse, as part of its strategy to pick up extra seats in New York. As the results rolled in on Tuesday night, it quickly became apparent the Maffei had been defeated by Republican challenger, John Katko. Indeed, Katko picked up a remarakable 60% of the vote. NY-24 has now changed hands in each and every of the last four elections.
Still, this unanticipated House result is an outlier. We already have a good sense of who will win in 2016. Stay tuned for FairVote’s 2016 US House projections, which will be available tomorrow on our Monopoly Politics page.