ad info

 custom news
 Headline News brief
 daily almanac
 CNN networks
 on-air transcripts
 news quiz

CNN Websites
 video on demand
 video archive
 audio on demand
 news email services
 free email accounts
 desktop headlines

 message boards




What's At Stake: Overview | Governor | Senate | House | Ballot Measures | State Legislatures

What's At Stake: State Legislatures

Every state but two -- Virginia and Louisiana -- has state legislative elections in 1998. Mississippi and New Jersey only have special elections. More than 6,000 state legislative seats of the nation's 7,424 will be decided on November 3. All of the state House seats are up in 46 states, but only 17 states have all of their state Senate seats up for re-election.

Going into the 1998 election, Democrats control both chambers in 20 states and Republicans in 19 states. Ten states have split control. Nebraska is a unicameral legislature. The number of legislatures where control is split between the parties has grown since 1984.

Republicans have made gains in the state legislatures during the 1990s. Prior to the 1990s, the Democrats had a built-in advantage in partisan control of state legislatures because of their dominance in the South. The Republican sweep in 1994 gave the GOP control of both chambers in 19 states, the highest number since 1968. Democrats controlled their largest number of state legislatures after the post-Watergate election of 1974.

A switch of four seats in at least one chamber in 30 states could change party control on November 3, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Since redistricting is right around the corner after the 2000 census and the state legislatures and governor control redrawing the district lines, the battle for party control in these states is particularly important in 1998.

Projections suggest that states in the Midwest and Northeast will lose congressional districts in the next reapportionment and the West and South will gain seats.

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, the 36 chambers in play are:

GOP Targets Democratic Targets
Alabama Senate Alaska Senate
California Senate Arizona Senate
California Assembly Colorado Senate
Connecticut Senate Florida Senate
Delaware Senate Florida House
Georgia Senate Illinois Senate
Georgia House Iowa Senate
Illinois House Iowa House
Indiana House Michigan Senate
Kentucky Senate Nevada Senate
Maine Senate New Hampshire Senate
Maine House North Carolina House
Michigan House Oregon House
Minnesota House Pennsylvania House
Missouri Senate Washington Senate
Missouri House Wisconsin Senate
Nevada House
New Mexico Senate
Tennessee Senate
Vermont Senate
Search CNN/AllPolitics by infoseek
          Enter keyword(s)       go    help

Related Links:

© 1998 Cable News Network, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines.