2024 House Races to Watch: Key Contests and Unfolding Political Dramas

The U.S. House races in 2024 are anticipated to be highly competitive, with several key contests to monitor. Incumbent Republicans, like Tony Gonzales and Nick LaLota, face significant challenges. Meanwhile, Democrats aim to unseat vulnerable Republicans such as David Schweikert. Special elections and primary face-offs also punctuate this electoral battleground.

Reuters | Updated: 29-05-2024 19:25 IST | Created: 29-05-2024 19:25 IST
2024 House Races to Watch: Key Contests and Unfolding Political Dramas

Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives will defend a narrow majority in the Nov. 5 elections. Below are some of the races to watch as Republicans and Democrats battle through 2024 for control of the chamber.

REPUBLICAN GONZALES HOLDS OFF CHALLENGER Republican incumbent Tony Gonzales, who represents a district in South Texas, narrowly fended off a nominating contest runoff challenge from fellow Republican Brandon Herrera, a gun rights social media personality. Gonzales had earned the ire of some of his fellow House Republicans who targeted him for his more moderate positions, including for supporting bipartisan gun safety legislation after 19 young students and two teachers were killed in a shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, part of his district. CUELLAR CHALLENGER

Republican Jay Furman, a military veteran, won a primary runoff to take on Democratic congressman Henry Cuellar in Texas. Cuellar and his wife were indicted on federal charges accusing them of accepting bribes meant to benefit an Azerbaijani state-owned energy company and a bank based in Mexico. They have denied wrongdoing. Cuellar had no opposition for the Democratic primary, and Republicans had not previously considered the district to be a top target. But the legal proceedings could play a role in the November election.

OHIO REPUBLICAN FACEOFF Michael Rulli, a Republican state senator, will face off against Michael Kripchak, a Democrat who worked in the entertainment industry before co-founding an electronic signal location tracking company, in a June 11 special election and November's general election to replace Representative Bill Johnson of Ohio.

Johnson had stepped down to head Youngstown State University, leaving voters in his district to choose candidates to hold the seat through the rest of the term and also in the general election. The district is heavily Republican.

NEW YORK SUBURBS Republican Representative Nick LaLota's district, made up of a number of suburbs of New York City, is one of several seats Democrats are aiming for in their quest to recapture the House majority.

Though a half dozen Democrats had filed to take him on, the field has winnowed to a race between former CNN journalist John Avlon and the former chair of a university's chemistry department, Nancy Goroff. Republican George Santos, who was expelled from Congress in December after being indicted over corruption charges, ended his long-shot independent bid to unseat LaLota in April. New York's congressional primaries are on June 25.

JAMAAL BOWMAN'S CHALLENGER Pro-Israel groups have sought primary challengers to left-wing lawmakers, but the incumbents have mostly been able to far outraise opponents, who have failed to gain much traction.

One exception is Democratic congressman Jamaal Bowman, a former school principal in his second two-year term representing a district covering part of New York City and some of its suburbs. His challenger, Westchester County Executive George Latimer, has attacked Bowman for the congressman's outspoken criticism of Israel's handling of the conflict in Gaza, a vote against Democratic President Joe Biden's infrastructure bill and for not producing enough results. Bowman has pointed to the resources he has steered toward the district.

Latimer has raised more campaign funds than Bowman, and polling suggests the primary will be competitive. The seat is considered a safe seat for Democrats, meaning that whoever wins their primary is favored to win the general election. LAUREN BOEBERT'S SWAP Colorado will hold a special election on June 25 to replace Republican Ken Buck, who left Congress before his two-year term was up.

Firebrand conservative Lauren Boebert, who won an unexpectedly narrow reelection bid in 2022 and who was facing a tough primary opponent in Colorado's 3rd Congressional District, has said she would run in Buck's old district instead. But Boebert, who would have needed to resign her seat to run for the special election, has said she would only run in the general election. The special election will include candidates such as Greg Lopez, a Republican former mayor who has pledged to serve as a placeholder through the end of Buck's term, and Trisha Calvarese, a Democrat who worked as a speechwriter in Washington before returning home to Colorado to care for her parents after they became ill.

The crowded Republican general primary also includes an Army veteran, a radio host and a former Republican leader in the state's general assembly. The seat is not considered competitive for the Democrats in the general election.

DEMOCRATS AIM AT SCHWEIKERT In Arizona's 1st District, Republican David Schweikert, who was first elected in 2010, is considered one of Democrats' top targets as they seek to gain control of the House. Schweikert narrowly won his reelection bid in 2022.

Among the half-dozen Democrats in the race to take him on are a first-time candidate who works in finance, a former White House speechwriter and former chair of the Arizona Democratic Party, and a doctor and state lawmaker. Arizona's primary elections are on July 30.

REPUBLICAN BID TO UNSEAT PEREZ First-term Democratic Representative Marie Gluesenkamp Perez of Washington state is seeking reelection, after initially edging out her opponent by 1 percentage point.

Hoping to face off against Perez is Joe Kent, who was the lawmaker's opponent in 2022 and who was endorsed by the state Republican Party in August. Kent has challenged the results of the 2020 election and raised conspiracy theories about the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol. Also seeking the Republican nomination is Leslie Lewallen, a former prosecutor and member of a local city council.

Washington's primaries will be held on Aug. 6. FILLING GALLAGHER'S SEAT

Republican lawmaker Mike Gallagher, who had been considered a rising star in his party, retired from Congress on April 25. Wisconsin scheduled a special election to fill Gallagher's seat through the end of his term for Nov. 5, the same day as the general election. A primary for the seat is scheduled for Aug. 13.

So far, four people have filed to replace Gallagher in the general election: three Republicans and one Democrat. They include a state lawmaker and a former state Senate president. It is considered a safe seat for Republicans.

DEMOCRATS TARGET PERRY Republican Scott Perry, one of the key lawmakers involved in Donald Trump's bid to overturn his 2020 presidential election defeat, has been a key target for Democrats, who say he is far too conservative for his Pennsylvania district. Janelle Stelson, a television journalist, won a crowded Democratic primary on April 23 to challenge him. Democrats are expected to make what they characterize as a threat to democracy a central part of their pitch to voters in November.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Give Feedback