• Schuyler Beltrami

2022 Midterms Preview –Kentucky


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The Millennial Agora continues our complete preview of the upcoming midterm elections for

Congress with the state of Kentucky. A state of more than 4 million people, Kentucky is a deep red state in the northern part of the Southern United States. Kentucky is a largely rural state, but does have some urban areas in the state’s western part, as well as large suburbs outside the Ohio city of Cincinnati. Most of the state’s economic base is through agriculture, but the state is also home to large factories and is the fourth-largest producer of automobiles in the country. In 2022, there will be elections in Kentucky for the House of Representatives as well as for the Senate. Kentucky is allocated six seats in the House, and this number remained unchanged after redistricting. Currently, five seats are occupied by Republicans, and one seat is occupied by a Democrat.


House of Representatives

Kentucky receives six seats in the House of Representatives and all seats will be up for

election in November. The overall CVPI for the entire state is R+16, making Kentucky’s House races (taken as a whole) to be strongly in favor of the Republican Party. (The CPVI, or Cook Partisan Voting Index, is the main metric to measure the strength of a political party for a particular House district or Senate seat. The measure was created and managed by the non-partisan Cook Political Report and uses historical data, as well as polling, to create the “partisan lean” of each district or state. A CPVI rating of R+15 would mean that on average, Republican candidates win elections in that district or state by an average of 15%, while a rating of D+15 would mean the same thing, but for the Democratic candidate. A district or state with a CPVI with double digits is considered to be non-competitive).


I. KY-01:

A. Current Representative: James Comer (R)

B. Population Distribution: Overwhelmingly Rural

C. Demographics: 84% White, 9% African American

D. Cook PVI: R+24 (Strong Republican)

E. Outlook: Kentucky’s first district is one of the most Republican districts in the state and includes the entirety of the western and southwestern corners of the state, including the state’s borders with Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, and Tennessee. The district, although overwhelmingly rural, does also include the state capital of Frankfort. Incumbent Rep. Comer

has represented the district since 2016. He holds a 50% lead in the aggregate polling data.

F. Millennial Agora Prediction: Republican Victory (HOLD)


II. KY-02:

A. Current Representative: Brett Guthrie (R)

B. Population Distribution: Overwhelmingly Rural

C. Demographics: 84% White, 7% African American

D. Cook PVI: R+21 (Strong Republican)

E. Outlook: The Kentucky second district encompasses the rural western central part of the state, including the city of Bowling Green, as well as the state’s border with Indiana. Incumbent Rep. Guthrie has represented the district since 2008. He won reelection in 2020 with 71% of the vote and earned almost two times more votes by himself than all Democratic candidates in the district’s closed primaries.

F. Millennial Agora Prediction: Republican Victory (HOLD)


III. KY-03:

A. Current Representative: John Yarmuth (D)

B. Population Distribution: Majority Urban and Suburban

C. Demographics: 62% White, 25% African American, 8% Hispanic

D. Cook PVI: D+9 (Strong Democratic)

E. Outlook: The Kentucky 3rd district includes the entire Louisville metropolitan area, the largest in the state, as well as part of the state’s border with Indiana. The Kentucky 3rd district is the only district in the state with a partisan lean favoring the Democrats. Incumbent Rep. John Yarmuth, who had been representing the district since 2006, but is not seeking reelection, meaning this seat is open. The favorite to replace him is Democratic nominee Morgan McGarvey, who is the current Minority Leader of the Kentucky State Senate. Democratic candidates received nearly three times more votes than Republican candidates in the district’s closed primaries. Mr. McGarvey also has a 21% lead in the aggregate polling data.

F. Millennial Agora Prediction: Democratic Victory (HOLD)


IV. KY-04:

A. Current Representative: Thomas Massie (R)

B. Population Distribution: Mostly Rural, Some Suburban Areas

C. Demographics: 87% White, 5% African American

D. Cook PVI: R+19 (Strong Republican)

E. Outlook: The Kentucky 4th district includes the northern part of the state, including the growing southern suburbs of the Ohio city of Cincinnati. Incumbent Rep. Massie has represented the district since 2012 and earned reelection in 2020 with 67% of the vote. He is currently leading in the aggregate polling data, by 35%.

F. Millennial Agora Prediction: Republican Victory (HOLD)


V. KY-05:

A. Current Representative: Hal Rogers (R)

B. Population Distribution: Overwhelmingly Rural

C. Demographics: 94% White

D. Cook PVI: R+32 (Strong Republican)

E. Outlook: The Kentucky 5th district, which is includes all the eastern third of the state, as well as the state’s borders with West Virginia, Virginia, and Tennessee, is the most Republican district in the state and the second most conservative district in the entire country. Incumbent Rep. Rogers has represented the district since 1980 and is the longest-

serving Republican in the House. He won reelection in 2020 with 84% of the vote.

F. Millennial Agora Prediction: Republican Victory (HOLD)


VI. KY-06:

A. Current Representative: Andy Barr (R)

B. Population Distribution: Mostly Rural, Some Urban Areas

C. Demographics: 79% White, 10% African American, 6% Hispanic

D. Cook PVI: R+9 (Strong Republican)

E. Outlook: The Kentucky 6th District includes the central part of the state and the city of Lexington. The only district which is close to a swing district in Kentucky is a very red shade of purple. Rep. Barr, who has represented the district since 2012, was reelected in 2020 with 57% of the vote and his district shifted two points to the right due to the redistricting. Republican candidates received around 4,500 more votes than Democratic candidates in the district’s closed primaries. For Rep. Barr, who survived the mini “blue wave” of 2018, should feel far more confident in a year when Republicans are due to make gains.

F. Millennial Agora Prediction: Republican Victory (HOLD)


Senate

As with every other state, Kentucky has two seats in the Senate, with one of these seats

being up for election in 2022. Incumbent Senator Rand Paul is seeking a third term in the Senate, having been first elected to the Senate in 2010. Despite his outspoken support for term limits, Sen. Paul is seeking to keep a seat in the Senate, which he was reelected to in 2016 with 57% of the vote. His Democratic challenger, Charles Booker, was an unsuccessful candidate for the US Senate in 2020 and served in the Kentucky State House from 2019-2021. Despite not enjoying broad national support from conservatives, Sen. Paul has remained popular in his home state and currently leads in aggregate polling data by around 21%. Despite being the overwhelming favorite in the Republican

primary, he still received around 90,000 votes more than the Democratic candidates in the state’s closed primaries, all good news for a Republican incumbent in a red state.


Millennial Agora Prediction: Republican Victory (HOLD)


Analysis

The Millennial Agora is predicting that the House races in Kentucky will lead to no changes in

the House or Senate, with five seats going Republican and one seat remaining with the Democrats. In the Senate, Rep. Paul will be reelected to the legislature, according to our predictions.


Thank you for reading our preview of the midterm elections in Kentucky. Check back

tomorrow as we look at the races in Louisiana, a state in the Deep South which become more and more Republican over the last few voting cycles.



The state of the House after our predictions. Made at 270towin.com

The state of the Senate after our predictions. Made at 270towin.com (States in light grey have no Senate seats up for election this year)

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