The momentous events of the last week can be interpreted in numerous ways. But one thing has become increasingly clear: The Republican Party needs to change.
One of the biggest questions in next year's presidential election will be what role gender will play in the voting and outcome, particularly if former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton wins the nomination. Over the past six presidential elections, Democrats have swept the female vote, by 8 points in 1992, by 16 points in 1996, by 11 points in 2000, by just 3 points in 2004, by 13 points in...
In a 5-4 ruling handed down this morning, the Supreme Court rejected a challenge to Arizona's Independent Redistricting Commission and quashed the specter of partisan, mid-decade redistricting in both Arizona and California. The biggest winners today are the incumbents who were at risk of being drawn out of a seat in 2016: Democratic Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (AZ-09) and GOP Reps. Jeff Denham...
The Sunshine State is poised to play a more pivotal role in national politics next year than at any time since the days of "hanging chads" in 2000. Not only has Florida spawned two front-running candidates for the GOP presidential nomination, its presidential primary next March could turn into a huge winner-take-all prize. Of course, Florida is also the Electoral College holy grail for both...
In politics, you have two choices: you can get in front of a wave or get slammed by a wave. Earlier this spring we saw Indiana Governor Mike Pence get walloped by a wave of his own making with his poor roll-out - and even worse public defense of - a religious freedom bill known as RFRA. Meanwhile, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley's call to remove the confederate flag from its perch on state...
It's human nature: People's ideas about presidential races are largely shaped by their perceptions of the personalities and images of the candidates. Both voters and the media become preoccupied, even obsessed, with these factors, to the exclusion of any others. The truth is, however, that big, fundamental forces have considerable—indeed, probably greater—impact on the outcome of a presidential...
Here at The Cook Political Report, we expend significant effort analyzing and handicapping presidential, congressional, and gubernatorial races. We produce PVI scores for individual districts to measure their partisan lean relative to the overall climate. Our staff members also author regular columns exploring political currents, from the general and the national down to the specific and the...
History shows it's extremely difficult for a presidential candidate to succeed a two-term president of the same party, especially one with approval ratings as middling as President Obama's. The "time for change" dynamic in 2016 should no doubt benefit Republicans.
In 2014, a good political environment, a weakened Democratic President and several open Democratic-held seats in red states combined to give Senate Republicans a nine-seat gain and the majority. The 2016 cycle looks very different cycle for Republican, as the tables are turned. Republicans will defend 24 seats to just 10 for Democrats. Of those 24 seats, President Obama carried the states of five of them in 2012 by at least five points, and carried two more by one and three points. Neither party may be helped by open seats as we suspect there won’t be many retirements this cycle, particularly compared to the last three cycles. Democrats need five seats – or four if they retain the White House – to take back the majority. It’s still very early, but winning back the majority may prove more challenging than it looks today.
The current House breakdown is 246 Republicans and 188 Democrats, with one vacancy. Thanks to President Obama's standing and the GOP's natural midterm turnout advantages, Republicans gained 13 seats in 2014, their largest share of seats since 1928. Democrats are likely to bounce back somewhat in the presidential cycle of 2016. But given how well sorted-out the House has become, netting the 30 seats they need for a majority looks like an unrealistic goal today. Today, our outlook is a Democratic gain in the 5-15 seat range.
The 2016 cycle will host 15 gubernatorial contests, including three races in 2015, and 12 in 2016, including the special election in Oregon. Democrats are defending nine seats to six for Republicans. The most interesting races of 2015 will be the open seats in Kentucky and Louisiana. In 2016, the marquis contests will be the open seat in Missouri and in North Carolina where GOP Gov. Pat McCrory is seeking a second term. With so few seats on the ballot, neither party is likely to make significant gains or sustain big losses.
The Cook Political Report is...
- A newsletter that both parties regard as authoritative.
– The New York Times
- The bible of the political community.
– Bob Schieffer, host of CBS News "Face the Nation"
- Perhaps the best nonpartisan tracker of Congressional races.
– David Broder, The Washington Post
Charlie Cook's Column
A Momentous Week, and a GOP That Needs to ChangeJuly 3, 2015
The momentous events of the last week can be interpreted in numerous ways. But one thing has become increasingly clear: The Republican Party needs to change.Read more »
More Columns »
Sign up for Charlie’s columns as they are released on NationalJournal.com »
Amy Walter, National Editor
Elizabeth Wilner, Contributing Editor
The Cook Political Report Partisan Voting Index (PVI)
The 2014 Partisan Voting Index
Read More »
The Rhodes Cook Letter
In the latest issue of the Rhodes Cook Letter, Rhodes takes a close look at the 2014 election.Download »