The GOP odds of winning the House as of this morning are 99.97%

The GOP performance in the midterm elections is very disappointing, but here’s some good news. It would take a miracle for the Democrats to retain the House of Representatives. Let’s do the math.

According to Wall Street Journal and other credible sites, the GOP has won about 211 seats and the Dems have won 192. That means about 32 seats are still undecided. The GOP needs at least 7 of those 32 to reach the bare majority of 218.

It’s fair to assume that the odds on each of those races is about 50/50. If it were otherwise, they’d have been decided. They’re “toss-ups” because the odds are like the odds of getting heads or tails when you toss up a coin.

OK, so let’s run with that. We can calculate the odds of the GOP getting 7 or more of the remaining 32 toss-up seats by calculating the odds of getting 7 or more heads when you toss up a coin 32 times.

The mathematical formula for calculating that figure is well known, and not very difficult. Even easier is to plug the data into an online calculator like THIS ONE.

It comes out to 99.97%. That’s right, the odds of getting at least 7 heads (or tails) in 32 coin tosses is 99.97%.

From that, it’s rational to conclude that the odds of the GOP getting at least 7 of the remaining 32 toss-up seats in the House are 99.97%. The odds of the Dems getting 7 seats is of course exactly the same. But 7 seats will get the GOP to a majority since they currently have 211. Those 7 seats will get the Dems exactly nothing.

I realize that my use of the coin flip calculator is not perfect, since the odds on each of the remaining 32 races may not be exactly 50/50 (though to the extent it’s different than 50/50, you’d think the differences would balance out between the GOP and the Dems). But the approach is sound, and I haven’t seen it anywhere else.

If only “journalists” had rudimentary math skills, and rudimentary fairness, they’d have called the House race for the GOP by now.

57 thoughts on “The GOP odds of winning the House as of this morning are 99.97%

  1. Good morning Glenn. We BOTH know that you have set an unusually “low” bar with your prediction of Republicans taking over the House. It wasn’t the 30, 40 or 50 seat RED wave that so many predicted…including yourself. As stated to you a few days ago, it is time for the Republican Party to denounce Trump and the New York Post did a great job a couple of days ago explaining why. “Trumpy Dumpty Had a Great Fall” and they have, for the most part, have supported Trump! WSJ is another publication that denounced Trump a day or two ago. Kevin McCarthy, IF he becomes Speaker is going to have an extremely difficult time appeasing the “loudest” voices in his Party and we BOTH know that, as well. It WILL be a Civil War within the Party if Trump announces on November 15th AND Georgia will once again, because of Trump’s poor choices for candidates…the Dems will continues majority in the Senate!

    • Respectfully, you are full of crap. Why would we denounce a President that did MORE for Americans than any other President, possibly ever. He was certainly an anomaly being not only a promises made, but actually promises kept President. If you look closely at his accomplishments, you end up in awe, given the landscape that he presided over. You forget that Trump won in 2020 in a relative landslide, when you remove all the ineligible ballots. Only a pillock would believe that Joe Biden got more votes than Barrack Obama. In addition, Trump helped elect 937 (he lost 7) candidates win on Tuesday. Try finding THAT reported ANYWHERE. Trump also has a 7% larger following than in 2020. The only potential loss for the Republicans will be if it is McConnell/McCarthy. That combination will not give conservatives anything to get excited about in 24, potentially making 24 a back to the democrat’s election . . .regardless of Republican nominee for President.

      • It’s fairly obvious where your news sources come from…and that’s your problem and not reality!

    • Majority control of the House of Representatives is significant whether that majority is plus sixty or plus six, as Nancy Pelosi has proven all too well over the last two years.

      • The Dems and the media industrial complex are strategically silent about what will take place on January 3rd, 2023. That’s when they lbecome the minority. They’ll begin their faux outrage that afternoon. Something about that whole ‘threat-to-our-democracy” thing.
        Boringly predictable.

    • I am TOTALLY convinced that by chicanery and cheating the Dems may even KEEP the House! I don’t put anything past them! I’m from PA, and you all know what WE somehow installed as a Senator! I also think the GA runoff will be worthless, as Dems will steal both AZ and NV! You heard it hear first!

      • So your belief system works like this…If a Republican was, it legitimate but if a Dem wins it was stolen. It is interesting logic to say the least. It is time to denounce Trump and put a legitimate Republican into office.
        What are Walker’s qualifications?

  2. Hey Glenn, I don’t want to come across as pedantic here but I love stats. The calculation you’re running is only valid if the probabilities are independent of one another. So, while each house seat is probably about 50/50 and some are independent of the others (e.g., CD-3), others are likely correlated to one another. With that adjustment, the current election betting odds at 91% looks about right to me.

    • Your point about the independence vs correlation is of course correct. But I don’t really see much reason to expect correlation between the various toss-up districts AT THIS POINT when 95+ percent of the vote is in, as distinguished from four days ago when we had a blank slate.

      That said, the 99.97% figure was higher than what my instinicts told me. But that’s why we invented math — to check our instincts. As for the betting odds, I’d take the 91% if that’s what’s being offered.

  3. So, it’s safe to say that Nancy and Paul will be packing their bags to relocate to the ambassador to Italy’s accommodations in Rome?
    It’s a good fit knowing the Pelosi Familia’s history. Although new Italian president likely will not bow for them when they arrive.

    • I don’t think so. The House is so close that a few vacancies will flip it back to D even if we get a bare majority. If we get 218 then 2 (R) vacancies flip the chamber. The gavel could be handed back and forth several times over the next 2 years. No way Nancy leaves a vacancy that has to be filled by a special that takes months.

  4. Trump may be too much into himself for his own good, but don’t blame Trump’s candidates for Tuesday’s disaster too much. It was Trump’s legacy of appointing 3 anti-abortion Justices that caused the disaster, not anything Trump did in the campaign. There is a reason the Country Club Republicans (both Bushes) never appointed enough constitutionalist Justices to overturn Roe – they didn’t really want it overturned. Trump wanted to deliver for his supporters on his promises, and appointing Justices who would overturn Roe was one of his easiest ones. Just as Roe itself changed politics for 50 years and jump started the Conservative Movement, its overturn will also permanently change politics, probably in ways that are not totally clear right now.

    No point crying over spilled milk. Lets go all out to win the GA runoffs.

    • All good points. Although it is an outside probability, maybe 10%, but Georgia could be a non-issue. We all can agree the quality of the Republican candidate put us here and who chose that candidate. As #45 said…if his candidates win…, he will take ALL of the credit but if they lose, he will take NONE of the blame! What a pathetic and vindictive human being he is!

      • Knowing what you know now, are you of the belief that any Republican president (pick one from the 19 who ran in 2016) serving from 1/20/2017-1/20/2021, would have been treated any differently by the leftist media propaganda industry? Any other Republican president would have been painted as a “dangerous threat to our democracy” for simply being a Republican. I’m not sure why many “non-leftist pundits” are afraid to factor this non-variable into their analysis of the 45th US president.

      • Good morning Phil! I have said this many times to my friends, I would have happily voted for ANY of our other choices for President than Trump. I have never been so involved/outspoken regarding politics until Trump came on the scene. People who have dealt with him personally, discuss how he is not a ‘good’ person. Up until this point fellow members of Congress fear his wrath, loss of their political life and this is why we are here today seeing the results of the midterms. As I said, it is time to self-reflect and see that a “moderate” Republican for President will put this country in much better shape than we are now.

        In regards what you asked me the other day, I truly don’t want to be the ‘skunk’ at the party when I participate in what Glenn has created, which he has done a great job and love reading his blog. I am attempting to provide a more moderate tone and removing some of the anger and at times, challenging a post. I will never use foul language or rob anyone of their dignity with insults. Hope you welcome me to do so. Thank you.

      • Just realized that I did not answer you specific question. I will always gravitate toward a more moderate choice and the mainstream media would have treated any of the following four candidates with more dignity and respect…if that is possible. In alphabetical order and would gladly support these four in 2016.
        Jeb Bush
        Chris Christie
        John Kasich
        Marco Rubio

    • “3 anti-abortion Justices”
      Does it matter that the US Constitution supported sending the ‘legal’ right to murder your baby back to the states?

      • Please continue to spread this attitude to ALL States and let’s see how the Republicans fare in 2024. What happened in Kansas and Kentucky…deep RED states will spread so pass this rhetoric to everyone!

  5. tTe remaining undeclared seats are not actually all toss ups, so I think this computation while accurate says almost nothing about real world likelihood. Many seats are still listed as undecided because in CA and other blue states coutning is sooo slow. The WSJ gives live results of all 435 house races. here They divide seats by Safe/Likely D, Lean D, Toss up, Lean R, Safe/Likely R. with 192 declafred D and 211 declared R that would leave 32 undecided. BUT, they list Alaska 1 as an undecided toss up, but it is not undecided just not yet declared. The D won that one, since Palin ran with a R opponent and gave the seat to the Democrats. Currently D leasds 47% to 27%. so that means 193/211 with 31 left to declare. However among those 31 are 9 seats listed as Safe/Likey D, mostly in CA, a quick look shows many with D leading by 5% or 10%. Only 1 Safe/Likely D seat has a R leading, MD 6, where R is leading by 0.62%. So assume the D’s win 8, give the R Md 6 for the sake of argument, that would leave D 201, R 212, with 22 left to declare. Of those 22 6 are in Lean D column, and of the 22 D are leading in at least 10. We may indeed win, I hope so, but the odds are unclear. BTW, WSJ lists WA 3 as a Safe R seat, but a Trump supported insurgent beat the incumbent R in the primary and at the moment is losing to the D by 49% to 51%. I beleive Trump supported the insurgent because the incumbent R voted for impeachment.

  6. You must include the D’s non-cricket ballot/election habits when formulating the equation. I speak as a long time albeit former D. Our precinct captain always had street money for straight D ballots. With today’s immense opportunities for all sorts of new kinds of misbehavior (e.g if R>D, D=R/ a 2 step bit of code that guarantees that D is always larger than R, and I haven’t written any code in years, i.e. there are no doubt a hundred more subtle ways to do this now) only the good Lord knows who will be in control of the House.

  7. Before I took those odds, I would want to look at the coin you are using. If both sides say “D”, all bets are off. Believe me, there is one party around that would do that if they could get away with it.

  8. Would somebody PLEASE tell the real Maury Brochstein that some lunatic is posting here, using his name?

    • Whoever is posting under that name likely doesn’t have much of a life. Also, if there’s one thing I know about Leftists it’s that they are poor losers and even worse winners. No grace, no good sportsmanship….these are not people that you’d want to be friends with. And this particular person loves to hear himself talk and to get as much attention as he can. Wish we had an ignore button on this site. Perhaps he’ll get banned for spamming. After all, this we’re here to find out what Glenn has to say, not this other person.

      • I’m as much of a “Leftist” as Liz Cheney! BTW – In my 40+ years of voting, the ONLY times I didn’t vote for the Republican presidential nominee was 2016 & 2020! I chose Country over Party. Some of the Republicans in Congress are growing a spine to rid themselves of the person who is destroying our Party!

  9. Am I the only reader here who sees Glenn’s commentary as less about calculating probabilities than about journalistic turpitude?

    On that subject, here’s a feel good story: With 99% of the vote in, Lauren Boebert is reclaiming Colorado’s CD-3 by about 1,000 votes, despite press bias that ignored the hook in her opponent’s mouth, much less attempt either to reel him in or release him by way of exonerating him. Adam Frisch the Fish didn’t even bother to try to wiggle or flop his way off the hook, and the press found nothing to see or say.

    But call it Karma, or she Nemesis, Boebert is exactly what pot-loving, abortion-loving, pandemic-loving, mail-in ballot/Dominion-loving, Biden-loving, Climate Change Religion-loving, illegal immigrant-loving, homelessness-promoting, and journalistically dead Colorado deserves. Since she has almost no political future in the state following her second term, I hope she goes down with her boots on and guns a-blazing (figuratively speaking, of course).

  10. Note the Drop and Roll in Lauren Boehbert’s race .. occurred in the Michigan Governor race, Georgia Senate race stealing , and more… a large batch of ballots was “dropped” with nearly every ballot for ..

    • If I had any reason to doubt you, I’d ask you how you claim to know these things, but I don’t. Already I regret my premature celebration of Boebert’s win. Whatever could I have been thinking . . . ? If the box-of-ballots-drop doesn’t get her, Dominion will.

  11. Since Glenn published his elegant analysis two days ago, the media has reported on 12 more “coin flips,” all of which came out “heads” for Democrats. Using Glenn’s assumptions, the chances of this happening were only one in 4,096. Obviously, his assumptions are wrong. These are not independent events, nor is the chance of each toss-up race going to the Republican 50/50. These “coin flips” are not a stochastic process. We are watching the result of massive corruption, while the media babbles on about reasons the Republicans are losing this election: Trump, poor branding, SCOTUS overturning Roe v. Wade, low quality candidates, etc. The media doesn’t talk about why these things didn’t stop the red wave in Florida.

    • What proof of corruption do you have…CREDIBLE proof!
      Thirty people that Trump hand-picked in the midterms LOST.
      Three words sums of this portion of the problem – TRUMP IS TOXIC!
      The American people have spoken and they are looking for a “moderate” Republican Party. ALL Republican election deniers in the five swing States LOST.
      These observations come from a life-long Republican who became an Independent in 2016. It is time for the Republican Party to finally denounce Trump…unless they want to keep their losing steak going. It is time for self-reflection and not conspiracy theories.

      • Yes, Othello thought Desdemona was cheating on him, and she wasn’t. Burden of proof, and all that.

        But what are you saying, Maury — that those of us crying foul are all victims of mass formation psychosis? That’s possible, I suppose. (Or were you not walking around with a useless mask over your face for the past two years?) Perhaps that’s what occurred in Fatima in 1917, when the greater part of 70,000 people saw the sun dancing in the sky. For that matter, perhaps it’s been occurring ever since Christ’s declared resurrection — two thousand years’ worth of delusional psychotics.

        Say what you will, I’m with Wayne Allen Root on this one —

        “When something is so obvious, if the outcome makes no sense, if the outcome is literally impossible, then it is what it is. Forget ‘proof.’ You know it. You saw it. You felt it. You experienced it. It happened. It’s real. The 2022 midterm was just stolen. Just like 2020.”

        Perhaps you’re the one who’s delusional if you think there’s anything right and proper and just about what’s occurring in Maricopa County, and a hundred places like it.

        Meanwhile, you attempt to do to Trump what Democrats did so effectively to Joseph McCarthy in 1954. But guess what? — there WERE Stalinists in the State Department. Lots of them. The evidence, or “proof,” is now abundant and clear.

      • Does Trump’s choices for candidates bear any responsibility for some of the election results?

  12. Of course, but it’s the “machinery,” or machinations, behind those results that we’re talking about. Clearly the monied Masters of the Universe cannot abide Trump-style populism, and they pull most of the strings, in both parties.

      • Happy to see that we agree on Trump bearing some of the responsibility. Would a more ‘moderate’ choice better represent the “majority” of the Republican Party in 2024?

      • Nope. I accept the estimate that 60-65% of the population are populists. Trump and his candidates should have been shoo-ins.

      • We can respectively agree to disagree on this one. A clear example of what is going on in our own district explains my theory on a more “moderate” candidate. Boebert should have been a shoo-in based on the political breakdown of our district and she is fighting for her political life. Don’t you agree?

      • Of course I agree. The question is, why has the contest been protracted for six days and counting? Do you trust the process? I’m afraid I don’t.

      • I do trust the process and a majority of Americans did until Trump came along! He represents a losing formula, in my opinion, and it’s time to tell him to get out of the way!

    • I largely agree: election fraud has always existed, but not on such a massive, global scale until Trump appeared. Should he go away? Perhaps, but only if a better warrior can replace him.

      • I totally agree that election fraud has always existed. When you are dealing with a voting population of approximately 160 million who voted in 2020, of course, someone will attempt to cheat. The question that we should be asking is – In the past 100 years in a US National election, has there ever been widespread fraud that changed the outcome of an election? I suggest you work an election, like I have done…you will be amazed at the number of checks and balances that exist and may change your outlook on this.

  13. We can respectively agree to disagree on this one. A clear example of what is going on in our own district explains my theory on a more “moderate” candidate. Boebert should have been a shoo-in based on the political breakdown of our district and she is fighting for her political life. Don’t you agree?

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