Democrats control it 258-177.
The party in power typically loses seats in a midterm year; Democrats lost 54 seats _ and the House _ in 1994. Even Democrats expect to see double-digit losses next year. Republicans would need to pick up 41 to regain control.
Far more Democratic seats are vulnerable than Republican ones. About two dozen Democratic districts are especially ripe for a switch, compared with about a dozen GOP districts.
Democrats will campaign on legislation they passed, including the $787 billion economic stimulus package that the administration says helped ease the recession and, perhaps, a health care overhaul. But Republicans also will force them to defend those votes on legislation assailed as too expensive, as well as on an energy measure that critics call a job killer.
Republicans are targeting a slew of freshmen House Democrats elected on Obama's coattails in moderate-to-conservative districts that McCain captured last fall and in places where the victories were achieved largely because of record-breaking turnout of blacks and youth with Obama on the ballot. The GOP also is going after Democrats in traditional swing-voting seats.
So far, House Democrats have money on their side, with $44 million raised through September compared with $27 million for Republicans.
Voters will choose 37 governors. Many Republicans view winning these races as the best way to rebuild the party because those elected to statehouses in 2010 will redraw congressional and legislative districts for the next decade.
Democrats have a 26-24 majority of governor's posts, now that they lost Virginia and New Jersey to Republicans.
Both Republicans and Democrats expect the GOP will pick up Democratic-held seats in at least two states McCain won last fall. They are Tennessee, where Democratic Gov. Phil Bredesen is retiring with no obvious successor, and Kansas, where Democratic Gov. Mark Parkinson is stepping down and Sen. Sam Brownback is the GOP candidate.
Elsewhere, Republicans are looking to overtake Democratic governors in Colorado, Iowa, Massachusetts and Ohio. Incumbents in New York and Illinois are on the radar. The GOP has on its high-priority list open Democratic-held seats in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. Attention is also on Oklahoma, Oregon, Maineand New Mexico.
Democrats' top targets are GOP governors in Arizona and Nevada, and Republican-held open seats in Florida, California, Minnesota, Vermont, Rhode Island and Hawaii. Others are Georgia and, possibly, Connecticut if Republican Gov. Jodi Rell decides not to run for re-election.