With a little more than 250 campaigning days left before election day, a quick snapshot of the current state of play in the House and the Senate races is in order. In the House all 435 seats will be on the ballot, and in the Senate 33 statewide races will be held. Democrats need to pick up a net total of 25 seats in the House to claim the majority, and must prevent the Republicans from picking up 4 seats, and the majority, in the Senate.

Senate Retirement  

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With three retirements over the past month, the 2012 Senate landscape is quickly taking shape. So far, it’s been somewhat welcome news for Republicans aiming to take back the Senate majority next year. Democrats must defend 23 seats, 10 of which are currently considered competitive, while Republicans must defend 10 seats, only 2 of which are currently considered competitive.

House Member vs. Member

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Before the once-every-ten-years Congressional redistricting process began, several commentators had suggested redistricting would produce large Republican gains that would ensure one-party domination for the next decade. However, with the process largely completed, most observers now believe that redistricting will be a "wash" that will not produce significant net gains for either

House Retirement

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Three of the 21 House Democratic retirements had their seats eliminated by redistricting, leaving Democrats to defend 18 open seats, while the GOP will try to hold onto 14 open seats. The Cook Political Report’s Partisan Voter Index indicated that the GOP has a credible advantage in 4 of the Democrats’ 18 open seats and loses the upper hand in one.

Party Breakdown of Seats Currently Seen as Competitive (Lean or Tossup)  

Senate

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