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These 47 House Democrats are on the GOP’s target list for 2022

Members in districts Biden lost or facing redistricting on list

The House Republican campaign arm is targeting 47 Democratic incumbents in next year’s midterm elections, the first sign of where the battle lines will be drawn as the GOP seeks to retake the chamber. 

The National Republican Congressional Committee’s list, shared with CQ Roll Call on Wednesday, includes 29 districts that either did not back President Joe Biden or supported their House incumbent by 5 points or less. The list also includes eight Democrats who won by less than 10 points and underperformed Biden, and 10 members the NRCC believes could face redistricting trouble next year. 

Republicans are optimistic about their chances in the 2022 cycle, pointing to the history of midterm gains for parties in the House and Senate minority when the opposite party controls the White House. The GOP also outperformed expectations down ballot in November. 

House Democrats lost a net of 11 seats from the previous Congress, with 13 of their incumbents defeated. They also lost an open Democratic seat and picked up three open GOP seats. No House Republican incumbent lost.

“The Democrats control every lever of power, and we’re going to make sure that every voter is aware of their socialist agenda and how radical the policies are that they are advocating, and how those policies will negatively impact the lives of middle-class families” NRCC Chairman Tom Emmer said at a news conference Wednesday. “That’s going to be bad news for House Democrats.”

The announcement comes a little over a week after House Democrats’ campaign arm, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, made its first foray into the 2022 cycle with a $500,000 television and online advertising campaign seeking to tie seven swing-district Republicans and Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy to the most extreme members of the GOP Conference. 

Those efforts are likely to increase in the coming weeks as images from the Jan. 6 insurrection at the Capitol are replayed during Donald Trump’s impeachment trial and as Democrats in both chambers advance votes that force GOP incumbents to go on the record on a number of controversial issues.

Emmer disavowed the Jan. 6 violence and said he was confident that Trump would be acquitted. He said the GOP plans to embrace the policies Trump advanced during his presidency, which, he said, “brought a ton of new followers to our party.”

But Emmer declined to address the former president’s role in the party.

“As to what President Trump wants to do going forward, I’ll leave that to him,” the Minnesota Republican said.

Republicans, likewise, have made early efforts to tie Democratic incumbents to the more progressive members of their party and to elements of the Biden agenda.

Emmer said the NRCC plans to continue to hammer Democrats on issues he said would resonate with “Main Street America,” including attacks on the Biden administration’s energy policy, efforts to roll back Trump’s immigration policies and coronavirus containment measures that have kept children out of school.

“What it’s going to come down to is the two different agendas,” Emmer said.  “One is about having the right to self determine your economic freedom, your individual liberties. The other one is about big government. Big government is back again. It’s going to continue to get bigger under this current regime.”

Emmer also said the House GOP plans to continue to focus on building the diversity of its conference. Similar efforts in the last cycle resulted in a GOP freshman class that more than doubled the number of Republican women in the House. 

With results of the 2020 census delayed, it will be a while before a clear picture of the vulnerable House members emerges. Data showing how the 435 House seats would be apportioned among the 50 states, originally due on Dec. 31, is not expected until the end of April, and it will be several more months until states get detailed local data needed to redraw district boundaries. 

Emmer said Republicans intend to “win redistricting” and noted that the majority of the new boundaries would be drawn by GOP-led legislatures.

The NRCC target list includes Democrats in states that are expected to gain or lose seats during the reapportionment or that have an independent redistricting commission.

Democrats have not announced their 2022 target list, but the majority of the DCCC’s spending so far this cycle has focused on Republican-held districts that Biden won.

Here is the list of NRCC targets:

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