The Obama Administration’s proposed rules to curb the influence of nonprofit groups in elections by 2016 are being met with a “meh” by some top election lawyers. Broadcasters may not feel quite so sanguine given the prominence of these nonprofits in their business model. Along with other types of outside groups, 501(c)4 organizations have been the biggest booster of...
Hardly a day or two goes by that a new poll isn't released showing President Obama with the lowest job-approval rating of his presidency. Of the major independent media polls using live interviewers, Obama's highest recent approval ratings were 42 percent in the ABC News/Washington Post and NBC News/Wall Street Journal polls, with disapproval ratings of 55 and 51 percent, respectively...
If you think about it, all the ingredients necessary for a political explosion are in place: Congress's unfavorable ratings are at record-high levels, and, according to Gallup, its favorable ratings are down to 9 percent (who knew members had so many friends and family?). A large segment of the electorate is furious with Republicans over the shutdown, and a second group is boiling over about...
As an observer of advertising and vendor of ad data, I have to give thanks for the Affordable Care Act. Unprecedented in the annals of television advertising, the law is triggering hundreds of millions, soon to be billions of dollars in both political and product TV advertising. In some areas of the country, these ads already are colliding as Republican candidates and issue groups excoriate...
The vast majority of conversations about politics these days occur on either a Democrat-versus-Republican axis or a conservative-versus-liberal axis, to the point where things get awfully dull and predictable. That’s why it can be fun to look at stories that are about something else entirely.Related StoriesOne of the more interesting of the “something else” political conversations going on...
One of the more common questions the Cook Political Report receives is, "Do you have a list of all the Tea Party challenges to Republican incumbents?" Or, the reverse: "Do you maintain a list of moderate challengers to Tea Party incumbents?" In reality, there are far fewer serious primary challenges to sitting House incumbents than most observers of Congress might guess, in part because...
The day after Election Day 2012, the worst fear for many Republicans was that the GOP’s problems—in terms of the overall party brand and its image among minorities, young people, women, and moderates—would not improve. The biggest concern for many Democrats was that their success had peaked with President Obama’s reelection and that it would all be downhill after that, most likely as a result...
With no sign that the troubled roll-out of Obamacare will be getting better any time soon, there is growing speculation that nervous Congressional Democrats will ultimately join GOPers in calling for the law to be scrapped. That would be foolish. More importantly, it also won’t insulate them from the political fall-out in 2014. Democrats have played defense on Obamacare since 2010, and...
Maybe the $2.25 million just invested by billionaire financier George Soros in Democratic data provider Catalist will pay off for Republican proponents of analytics, as well, by way of added motivation. The Soros contribution may not be a game-changer, as Scott Tranter of GOP analytics firm 0ptimus notes, but it’s “an important symbolic investment.” The longer...
The 2014 Political Environment
Updated December 2, 2013 | As the 2014 midterm election cycle begins to take shape, the Cook Political Report has identified several metrics worth monitoring between now and Election Day.
- Right Direction/Wrong Track Polling
- Presidential Job Approval Ratings
- Consumer Confidence/Consumer Sentiment
- ACA/Obamacare: Public Approval
- Party Affiliation
- Democratic/Republican Party Favorability Ratings
- The Generic Congressional Ballot Test
Also: "What It Takes:" 2014 House and Senate MathRead full report »
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The current Senate line-up is 53 Democrats, 45 Republicans, and two independents that caucus with Democrats. There are 35 Senate races on the ballot in 2014. To win the majority, Republicans would have to score a net gain of six seats. Democrats are defending 21 of these seats, including six in states that GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney won easily in 2012, and two more that are in swing states. By contrast, Republicans will defend 14 seats, only one of which is in a state that President Obama carried in 2012. These numbers would suggest that Republicans should be in a position to gain seats this cycle. At this early stage, the odds of Democrats losing seats are far greater than the odds of them gaining seats.
The current House breakdown is 231 Republicans, 200 Democrats, and four vacancies. Democrats need to gain 17 seats to reach a majority in 2014. Because the House is well sorted-out, the likeliest outcome is a minimal net shift of five seats in either party's direction. However, if House Republicans continue to pursue unpopular and self-destructive strategies similar to those that led to the October 2013 government shutdown, larger Democratic gains are possible.
The current line up of the nation’s Governors is 29 Republicans and 21 Democrats. There are 36 contests in 2014. Of these 36 races, 22 are held by Republicans and 14 by Democrats. Republicans have far more exposure to losses. Of the GOP’s 22 seats, President Obama easily carried seven of these states in 2012, while another three seats are in swing states. Only one of Democrats’ 14 seats is in a state that Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney carried. At this point in the cycle, it appears that Republicans are more likely to lose seats than gain them.
C-SPAN's Q&A with Charlie Cook
Learn more about Charlie and the history of The Cook Political Report through a recent hour-long episode of CSPAN's Q&A.
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– The New York Times
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– David Broder, The Washington Post
Charlie Cook's Column
Too Soon to Know If Obama Can Bounce BackNovember 29, 2013
Hardly a day or two goes by that a new poll isn't released showing President Obama with the lowest job-approval rating of his presidency. Of the major independent media polls using live interviewers, Obama's highest recent approval ratings were 42 percent in the ABC News/Washington Post and NBC News/Wall Street Journal polls, with disapproval ratings of 55 and 51 percent, respectively...Read more »
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The 2014 Cook Political Report Partisan Voter Index (PVI)
Since 1997, the Cook Political Report's Partisan Voter 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.
The Rhodes Cook Letter
This latest issue of "The Rhodes Cook Letter" takes a look at voter turnout, which has been high of late in presidential elections - at least high by U.S. standards. There is also a look at the unfolding special elections, with a particular emphasis on...Download »