Speed Reads

Election 2018

There is a massive wave of well-funded Democrats prepared to challenge incumbent Republicans in 2018

Dozens of Democratic House candidates are out-raising their Republican opponents, looking a surprising amount like the GOP did eight years ago before capturing the House in the 2010 sweep, Politico reports. "The Democrats in 2017 are starting to very much resemble the Republicans in 2009," said former Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chair Steve Israel. "People are talking about a wave developing, but in order to even begin to think about a wave, you have to be in a position to take advantage in [case of] a wave. And Democrats are clearly in that position."

Even as the Democratic National Committee is struggling to compete nationally with the Republican National Committee — "on-the-ground operatives worry they won't have the resources to build the infrastructure they need to compete effectively in next year's midterms and in the run-up to 2020," Politico wrote Sunday — local House candidates are putting intense pressure on their opponents more than a year ahead of the election. "At least 162 Democratic candidates in 82 GOP-held districts have raised over $100,000 so far this year," Politico found, adding that that's "about four times as many candidates as House Democrats had at this point before the 2016 or 2014 elections," and twice as many as Republicans had before the 2010 wave.

Additionally, Democrats have out-raised nearly three dozen different Republican incumbents around the country. "That's something that should get every Republican's attention in Washington," said GOP strategist Jason Roe. "These first-timers are printing money."

In fact, it has: "The fact that the environment is so intense so early is ultimately a good thing, as it makes sure more members will be prepared," observed Republican operative Mike DuHaime. "They can see it coming." Read the full analysis at Politico.