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Politics Special election: How to look at returns from the Pennsylvania House race

13:41  13 march  2018
13:41  13 march  2018 Source:   cnn.com

Trump to rally for endangered Republican in Pennsylvania

  Trump to rally for endangered Republican in Pennsylvania <p>President Donald Trump is set to campaign on Saturday in Pennsylvania steel country for a Republican congressional candidate who is in a tight race.</p>Trump was to speak shortly after 7 p.m. EST at a "Make America Great Again" rally in a hangar at the Pittsburgh International Airport on behalf of Republican candidate Rick Saccone.

The Pennsylvania 18th special congressional election between Democrat Conor Lamb and Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience. Special election : How to look at returns We should have a clear idea of who has won the race by 11 p.m. ET. But when polls close at 8 p.m. and

Conor Lamb claims victory in PA House race . Replay. Smerconish: Passion will win PA election . Voters divided ahead of Pennsylvania election . Democrats, meanwhile, would look to replicate Lamb's success in working-class districts with similar demographics.

a man wearing a suit and tie smiling at the camera© Getty Images

The Pennsylvania 18th special congressional election between Democrat Conor Lamb and Republican Rick Saccone is finally here!

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The good news for poll watchers, no matter your party affiliation, is it shouldn't be too late a night if the returns come in at the same rate they have in prior years. We should have a clear idea of who has won the race by 11 p.m. ET.

But when polls close at 8 p.m. and results are still coming in, surely the question will be asked: who is winning?

The best way to get at that question is to look at how each candidate is doing in each of the 18th District's four counties and compare that to county benchmarks based off of the pasttwo presidential results.

Dem leads by 6 points in Pa. special election: poll

  Dem leads by 6 points in Pa. special election: poll The poll shows Democrat Conor Lamb gaining ground in the final days of the race.A new Monmouth University poll found that, if there's a surge in Democratic voter turnout on Tuesday, Lamb garners a majority of the vote with 51 percent, compared to Saccone's 45 percent. One percent of voters polled support a third-party candidate, while three percent remain undecided.

See full results and maps of the Pennsylvania special election . And Republicans know it: As part of their final push in the race , the leading House Republican “super PAC” created a digital ad made to look like a cable television news report portraying Mr. Lamb as supposedly reaching a “boiling point”

A special House election in western Pennsylvania ended the night too close to call, with Conor Lamb, a Democrat, and Rick Saccone, a Republican, separated by a few hundred votes. Under Pennsylvania law, there is no automatic recount in such a race , no matter how close.

One candidate may end up winning district-wide by greatly surpassing their benchmarks in one county, despite coming in under their benchmark in another. Still, they are a good starting point to making sense of the results.

Note: all benchmarks are given as what Lamb needs to achieve. To know what Saccone needs to do, just take the opposite (e.g. if Lamb must win a county by 9, then Saccone must lose it by no more than 9. If Lamb cannot afford to lose a county more by than 9, then Saccone must win it by more than 9.)

So, for those following along at home, here's a breakdown of the district's four counties and a general sense of how Lamb and Saccone need to perform in order to claim victory:

Allegheny

It makes up a little more than 40% of the district's voters and is the most Democratic. The county became more Democratic relative to the district as a whole in the 2016 presidential election compared to the 2012 election. Part of that has to do with the fact that this is the most educated part of the district. Hillary Clinton did very well among college educated voters compared to Barack Obama. Based upon the 2012 results, Lamb needs to win only by about 9 points to win district-wide. Based upon the 2016 outcome, Lamb needs to win by at least 16 points. The latest Monmouth University poll, which put Lamb up 6 overall, has Lamb ahead by 24 in this county.

What happens if the Pennsylvania special election goes to a recount

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The Associated Press is not declaring a winner in Tuesday's special election for Pennsylvania 's 18th Congressional District because the race between Democrat Trump says undocumented immigrants should 'immediately' return without due process. No one answering ‘hard questions’ on how many

Conor Lamb. Over the past three months, America’s two major parties spent over million on a race for a House vote that won’t matter — in a district that will soon cease to exist. Which is to say: Last night’s special election in southwestern Pennsylvania was, primarily

Greene

It only makes about 2% of voters in the district, but Greene County demonstrates how different parts of the district had very different shifts between 2012 and 2016. Greene, which is far less educated than the district as a whole, swung heavily toward Donald Trump in 2016 as did many other places with a number of white voters without a college degree. If the 2016 presidential coalition applies, Lamb can lose here by up to 23 points and still be on track to win the district. If 2012 is a better guide, he can only lose here by up to 8 points.

Washington

It's home to a little more than 20% of the district's voters and is arguably closest to the district's median voter. A recent Monmouth poll illustrates this well. With Lamb up by 6 overall, he is ahead by 2 points in the Greene (again a very small part of the district)/Washington County crosstab. Using the 2012 baseline, Lamb must lose here by less than 1 point to win the race. Using the 2016 baseline, he can afford to lose here by up to 7 points.

Westmoreland

It's home to a little more than 30% of the district's voters and is the Republican counterbalance to Allegheny. Lamb must keep his deficit here to less than 10 points (2012 baseline) or less than 15 points (2016 baseline) in order to emerge victorious district-wide. In the Monmouth poll, Lamb trails here by 14 points. Saccone will have to do better than that if the Monmouth poll is correct about Lamb's strong over-performance in Allegheny.

Pelosi: Conor Lamb's win wasn't because he criticized my leadership .
Nancy Pelosi doesn't think that Democrat Conor Lamb's disavowal of her in his special election race aided his apparent victory in Pennsylvania's 18th Congressional District. "I don't think that that really had that much impact on the race," the California Democrat said at her weekly press conference Thursday. "He won. If we hadn't won, you might have a question, but we won — the 'D' next to his name was very significant."Lamb presented himself as a Pelosi critic during the race.

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