Morning Digest: Our new data set will help you unlock the Keystone State’s legislative elections

[ Originally published on this site as post ]

The Daily Kos Elections Morning Digest is compiled by David Nir, Jeff Singer, Stephen Wolf, and Carolyn Fiddler, with additional contributions from David Jarman, Steve Singiser, Daniel Donner, James Lambert, David Beard, and Arjun Jaikumar.

Leading Off

Pres-by-LD: Daily Kos Elections’ project to calculate the 2016 presidential results for every state legislative seat in the nation arrives in the commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the 46th state we’ve released data for. You can find our master list of states here, which we’ll be updating as we add new states; you can also find all our data from 2016 and past cycles here.

Campaign Action

Pennsylvania surprisingly, and distressingly, gave Donald Trump a 49-48 win over Hillary Clinton last year, a big switch from Barack Obama’s 52-47 victory against Mitt Romney. Far less surprisingly, Trump also carried a majority of the Keystone State’s 203 state House seats and 50 state Senate districts. Trump took 119 seats in the House and 27 Senate seats. Thanks to GOP gerrymandering, Romney carried 114 House districts and also won 27 Senate seats despite losing the state four years ago, though he and Trump traded quite a few constituencies in each chamber.

Republicans flipped the state House in the 1994 GOP wave, and while Democrats won small majorities in 2006 and 2008, Team Red retook the chamber in 2010. Republicans currently hold a 121-82 majority in the lower chamber, where members serve two-year terms. (Two Democratic-held seats are currently vacant; Daily Kos Elections always assigns vacant seats to the party that last held them.)

The Senate, meanwhile, has been in GOP hands continuously since 1994. Democrats held out hope ahead of the 2014 elections that they could at least force a tie in the chamber, which a Democratic lieutenant governor would break in their favor. However, things didn’t work out that way at all, and the GOP now holds a huge 34-16 edge, which would allow them to override Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf’s vetoes if not for their smaller House majority. Senators serve four-year terms: Odd numbered seats are up in presidential years, while the even seats are up in midterm cycles.