This carefully chosen sample of 2018 congressional campaigns provides readers with an account of the campaign battles that took place across the nation. Although Democrats seemed to be poised for a big blue wave of victory following Donald Trump’s historic and divisive 2016 election, the Midterms yielded instead a split decision.

Looking at issues ranging from the Kavanaugh confirmation, health care, the economy, and the impact of President Trump, this book traces the dynamics at work in the 2018 Midterm elections. The editors open with an explanation of the trends in this election cycle, followed by eight in-depth case studies of House and Senate toss-up races involving seats held by endangered Republican incumbents. The book shows how 2018 fits into the context of precursor midterm campaigns and what the analysis of competitive states and districts holds for 2020.

Aimed at a wide variety of college courses as well as general interest readers, this book tells the story of the 2018 Midterms in fascinating detail.


  • Goes beyond the conventional wisdom to analyze Republican incumbents’ win/loss records, Democratic challengers, the role of Trump and other factors, explicating a Midterm election year with no simple story line on either side.
  • Explores common themes and structures across all chapters, allowing students to compare disparate election races more easily.
  • Looks at issues ranging from the Kavanaugh confirmation, health care, the economy, and the impact of President Trump, putting campaign dynamics into context with the challenge of governing.


chapter 1|29 pages

The 2018 Elections

ByRandall E. Adkins, David A. Dulio

chapter 2|19 pages

An Endangered Republican Incumbent Survives in the Suburbs

Fitzpatrick vs. Wallace in Pennsylvania’s 1st Congressional District
ByStephen K. Medvic, Berwood Yost

chapter 3|20 pages

“Senator Spineless” and the Campaign Against Demography

Heller vs. Rosen in Nevada’s Senate Race
ByDavid F. Damore

chapter 4|17 pages

Flipping Red to Blue in the Lone Star State

Culberson vs. Fletcher in Texas’ 7th Congressional District
ByBrandon Rottinghaus

chapter 5|23 pages

A Negative Nail Biter

McSally vs. Sinema in Arizona’s Senate Race
ByKim Fridkin, Patrick J. Kenney

chapter 6|19 pages

An Extraordinary Set of Circumstances

Rouda vs. Rohrabacher in California’s 48th Congressional District
ByGar Culbert, Alexandra J. Lazar

chapter 7|25 pages

Party “Trumps” Independence

Blackburn vs. Bredesen in Tennessee’s Senate Race
ByAmy E. Jasperson

chapter 8|24 pages

Another Suburban District Turns Blue

Stevens vs. Epstein in Michigan’s 11th Congressional District
ByDavid A. Dulio, John S. Klemanski

chapter 9|22 pages

A Split Decision in “Flyover Country”

Yoder vs. Davids in Kansas’ 3rd Congressional District and Watkins vs. Davis in Kansas’ 2nd Congressional District
ByBurdett A. Loomis, Patrick R. Miller

chapter 10|20 pages

Split Decision

ByDavid A. Dulio, Randall E. Adkins