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House Overview|By David Wasserman, January 30, 2015

All seven states with only one House seat have experienced at least one turbulent, competitive House race in the past decade. That's surprising, given that none of these small states - Alaska, Delaware, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, and Wyoming - are particularly competitive between the parties at the presidential level. In 2014, Montana featured a spirited open seat contest but...

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, January 29, 2015

Those who avidly follow politics always seek clarity and understanding, simply to figure out what is likely to happen. At this point, at least on the Republican side, we're all going to have to accept that this presidential nomination fight is going last a very long time with no clarity on the horizon.

National Politics|By Amy Walter, January 28, 2015

First, let me say that I really do like Iowa. Of course the weather is terrible, but the people are nice and politically engaged. Des Moines has turned into a pretty good restaurant town and the hotels there are WAY better than the ones in Manchester, New Hampshire. That said, Iowa isn’t going to pick the next GOP nominee. Its role in 2016 will be more to winnow the field of...

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, January 27, 2015

While the 2016 presidential contest is starting to consume the attention of the political world, another immediate concern for the Republican Party ought to be what the party will stand for in the coming post-Obama era. The pomp and circumstance surrounding this week's State of the Union address notwithstanding, President Obama becomes a little less relevant to American politics every day. To...

House Overview|January 22, 2015

How time flies: 2015 marks the halfway point between the last Census (April 1, 2010) and the next one. A common private refrain among House Democrats is that the party won't really have a chance to regain the majority until the current "gerrymandered" lines drawn by the GOP in 2010 are somehow untangled in the next round of redistricting. But a very early look at the reapportionment and...

National Politics|By Amy Walter, January 21, 2015

There are enough potential candidates for president (on the GOP side at least) that you need an Excel spreadsheet just to keep them all straight. Instead of a complicated algorithm, I've boiled each candidate down to his/her most basic elements. At the end of the day, these are the things more likely to define a presidential wannabe. It's also important to distinguish between durable traits and...

POLITICAL ADVERTISING|By Elizabeth Wilner, January 20, 2015

High time or not, the Obama White House didn’t just end the tradition of the State of the Union speech as a must-watch policy trial balloon festival. It killed it as a hook for print ad sales.

House Overview|By David Wasserman, January 16, 2015

For both parties, the new year is a time to reflect and regroup. For Republicans and NRCC Chair Rep. Greg Walden, that means figuring out how to stay the course and preserve 2014 gains during a more challenging presidential cycle. For Democrats and new DCCC Chair Rep. Ben Ray Lujan, it's more about starting from scratch and bouncing back, even if the 30 seat gain needed for the majority looks...

California Senate|By Jennifer Duffy, January 16, 2015

There is no official starting gun in an election cycle. Some believe that it’s the day after the last election, while others tend to look at January 1. At least symbolically, though, a new election cycle for the U.S. Senate might just begin with the first announcement by an incumbent that he/she won’t seek re-election.

  • After two disappointing cycles, Republicans have won the majority in the Senate.  We had been predicting that Republicans would pick up between four and seven seats, noting that it would likely be on the higher end of that range and might even exceed it.  They did exceed it, scoring a net gain of eight seats.  The run-off in Louisiana between Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu and GOP U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy could make it nine seats.  The new Senate line-up is 53 Republicans, 46 Democrats, including two independents that caucus with the Democrats, and one undecided race. 

  • 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, and if they win an upcoming special election to hold New York's 11th CD on Staten Island, they will win their largest number 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, winning the 30 seats they need for a majority looks like an unrealistic goal today.

  • The 36 Governors races on the ballot this cycle were supposed to provide Democrats with a silver lining on election night.  For much of the cycle, they looked poised to pick up between two and four seats since Republicans had to defend governorships in states President Obama carried easily in 2012.  But, Republican incumbents ran very solid races, while Democrats struggled to hold their some of their open seats, including two in very blue states.  In the end, Republicans actually picked up seats, defeating Gov. Pat Quinn in Illinois and winning open seats in Arkansas, Maryland, and Massachusetts.  The GOP lost Pennsylvania, where Gov. Tom Corbett was running for a second term, and the results of Gov. Sean Parnell's re-election bid in Alaska are pending.  The new line up of the nation’s Governors is 31 Republicans and 17 Democrats, with the outcome of two races pending (Alaska and Vermont).

New York  |  District 19  |  Gibson (R)

Toss Up
Likely R

California  |  Senate  |  Boxer (D)

Solid D
Likely D

Louisiana  |  Senate  |  Landrieu (D)

Toss Up
Lean R

New York  |  District 11  |  Grimm (R)

Toss Up
Lean R

Maryland  |  District 06  |  Delaney (D)

Solid D
Likely D

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    – David Broder, The Washington Post

Charlie Cook's Column

White House Window

December 19, 2014

Some books you read for grand or provocative ideas and deep thoughts. Others offer insights and vignettes that help you understand something better. Chuck Todd's The Stranger: Barack Obama in the White House is more of the latter type. Hundreds of books and thousands of articles have already been written about Obama's presidency, and there will be many more. The truth is, this field has...

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Amy Walter, National Editor

Amy Walter is the Cook Political Report's National Editor. In her weekly column, Walter provides analysis of the issues, trends, and events that shape the national political environment.
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Elizabeth Wilner, Contributing Editor

Elizabeth Wilner is Senior Vice President of Kantar Media Ad Intelligence with oversight of its Campaign Media Analysis Group (CMAG), Contributing Editor of The Cook Political Report, and former Political Director of NBC News. Wilner's weekly segment, "On Points," covers the fast-growing junction of advertising, Big Data, and politics.
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The Cook Political Report Partisan Voting Index (PVI)

The 2014 Partisan Voting Index

Since 1997, the Cook Political Report's Partisan Voting Index (PVI) has been the gold standard in measuring how each state and district performs at the presidential level relative to the nation as a whole. Click below for the breakdown of PVI for every House district in the 113th Congress.
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The Rhodes Cook Letter

In the latest issue of the Rhodes Cook Letter, Rhodes takes a close look at the 2014 election.

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