Approval of the Congress was growing after the election. Since mid-May it has dropped but seems to be starting upward again.

Approve Disapprove
Real Clear Pol. 8/3/21 31.4% 59.6%
Real Clear Pol. 6/15/21 28.8% 60.5%
Real Clear Pol. 5/18/21 35% 56.3%
Real Clear Pol. 5/4/21 36.3% 55.5%
Real Clear Pol. 4/6/21 34.3% 57.0%
Real Clear Pol. 3/2/21 29.7% 60.0%
Real Clear Pol. 2/22/21 26.3% 60.0%
Real Clear Pol. 1/5/21 18.7% 70.3%
Real Clear Pol. 11/10/20 18.0% 70.3%

The House of Representatives

Washington Watch uses the Cook Political Report for its report on elections in the U.S. House of Representatives.


  • Democrats: 221 seats
  • Republicans: 212 seats
  • Vacancies: 2 seats (FL-20, OH-15)

Open seats in 2022

  • Democrats 6
  • Republicans 7

Potentially open seats in 2022

  • Democrats 7
  • Republicans 15

Newt Gingrich resigned from the House in November 1998 but at least one of his many actions continues to have impact on the House of Representatives.

In the good old days, large numbers of members of the House lived in the District of Columbia area. Gingrich declared that folks should be living back in their districts and that changed the connection many of the members of the House had with each other. Among other things, their children no longer went to school with each other. This affected how the members dealt with each other.

What might the future hold for…

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
Member of U.S. House of Representatives
New York’s 14th district

First elected at age 29, Ocasio-Cortez is the youngest woman ever elected to the House of Representatives. She was first elected in the 2018 election by defeating incumbent Joe Crowley the Democratic Caucus chair in the Democratic primary by a vote of 15,897 to 11,761. She easily won the general election with 78% of the vote.

By January 2020, Ocasio-Cortez had created a political action committee called Courage to Change, designed to support progressives running for office.

She was re-elected in 2020, capturing 69% of the vote in the general election.

In February 2021, Ocasio-Cortez helped raise money to give food, water and shelter to Texans affected by the power crisis. She raised $2 million on her first day and $5 million by the end of the third week of February. She also traveled to Houston to help volunteers with recovery.

From the date she was sworn in, Ocasio-Cortez has generated more media attention than many of the candidates running for president in 2020.

She formally nominated Senator Bernie Sanders at the Democratic National Convention.

Ocasio-Cortez is a member of the Financial Services committee and of the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

WW asked a number of knowledgeable people, whether in their experience, had any other member of the House gained so much public prominence having served for only one session plus 7 months.

I received the following from someone who WW thinks is one of the most expert about the House. “I’m unaware of a comparable scenario.” [WW]

The Senate

[WW uses Jessica Taylor of the Cook Political Report and Inside Elections for the Senate chart below. When those two organizations do not agree, WW uses Sabato as a tie breaker.]

  • Republicans – 50
  • Democrats – 48
  • Independents – 2
Democrats Republicans Independent
Seats not up in 2022 34 30 2
Safe in 2022 10 15  
  Padilla Murkowski  
  Bennett AL – open  
  Blumenthal Boozman  
  Schatz Grassley  
  Duckworth Crapo  
  Van Hollen Young  
  Schumer Moran  
  Wyden Paul  
  Leahy Kennedy  
  Murray MO – open  
Likely 0 2  
  OH – open  
Lean 4 1  
  Kelly Johnson  
  Warnock NC – open  
  Cortez Masto    
Toss Up 0 2  
    NC – open  
    PA – open