Things went well, but not exceptionally well, for Democrats.
Democrats lost a lot of ground in statehouses under Barack Obama’s presidency. In the 2018 midterms, they started to get some of it back — but they’ve still got a lot of catching up to do. Democrats took control of six state legislative chambers nationwide in Tuesday’s midterm elections, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
Voters in 46 states cast their ballots for more than 6,000 state legislators on Tuesday. In multiple states, legislatures either flipped from Republican to Democratic-controlled or, in one state, went to Democrats from a split chamber.
Ahead of Election Day, Vox’s Dylan Scott laid out why state legislative elections are so important: They’re crucial for state-level policy debates on issues such as taxes, education, and health care, and they will also be key when officials start redrawing US congressional districts in 2020. Republican gerrymandering has put Democrats at a disadvantage in many states across the country, and Democrats getting more control of state legislatures could help them start to push back.
Per Scott: “It is no exaggeration to say that the 2018 state legislative races —and then the even more crucial 2020 elections — will help determine who controls the US House all the way through 2030.”
The results, for Democrats, were good, but not great. As the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) notes, the gains the party made were relatively modest compared to past midterms.
That’s not to say they weren’t meaningful. In Colorado, for example, Democrats now control the state Senate and maintained control of the House of Representatives, and Democrat Jared Polis won the governorship, giving