- Kevin Lamarque/Reuters
- More than 2,100 people have filed to run for a seat in Congress ahead of the 2018 midterms.
- It’s the most number of candidates at this point in the election cycle since the Federal Election Commission started keeping track in 1977.
- So far, Democrats are leading the pack, with over 1,200 people currently running to fill a seat in the House or Senate.
A record number of people have declared their candidacy for upcoming elections in the US House and Senate, The Washington Post reported Saturday.
It marks the most candidates at this point in the election cycle since the Federal Election Commission started keeping track of candidate election filings in 1977.
Democrats are overwhelmingly leading the pack. By the end of 2017, more than 1,200 people filed to run as Democrats for seats in either the House or Senate, according to The Post. More than 800 people filed to run as Republicans.
While there are likely multiple factors explaining the surge in candidates, strong opposition among liberals to President Donald Trump has certainly played a significant role.
Republicans experienced a similar surge in candidates after Barack Obama’s first election victory and ahead of the 2010 midterms. The field of 745 Republican candidates helped the GOP overtake the majority in the House that year.
Last November, Democrats had one of their best Election Days in years, a potential sign for what could be in store for the party in 2018 should enthusiasm for Democrats persist.
The brightest sign for Democrats came in Virginia, an increasingly blue-leaning swing state where Democratic Governor-elect Ralph Northam defeated Republican nominee Ed Gillespie by roughly 9 points. Democrats also erased a 32-seat deficit in the state legislature, making it the largest red-to-blue flip in the Virginia House since 1899.
“A revolution started in Virginia from college-educated white voters and an uprising began from people of color – both against Donald Trump,” Jesse Ferguson, a senior spokesperson on Hillary Clinton’s campaign, previously told Business Insider.
“Virginia has always been an early-warning system for midterm elections – almost always showing us what will happen in the next year if the course of the storm doesn’t shift. As of now, there is a storm brewing and it’s heading right for the Republican districts in the suburbs,” Ferguson said.