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National Politics|By Amy Walter, March 25, 2015

Many are looking at the 2016 GOP primary in the same way they look at recent congressional GOP primaries: a contest between the Tea Party or very conservative forces versus the traditional conservative/establishment forces. At the House and Senate level, of course, the candidate who corralled the support of the Tea Party segment of the party has often been successful in toppling the...

Indiana Senate |By Jennifer Duffy, March 24, 2015

Republican Sen. Dan Coats of Indiana announced today that he will not seek a second term next year, creating the first open seat of the cycle for Republicans and only the third to date. Coats' decision was not entirely unexpected as rumors had been circulating for several months that he was thinking about retiring. The Republican bench in the state is pretty deep. Most of the seven GOP...

Florida House |By David Wasserman, March 23, 2015

This morning, sophomore Democratic Rep. Patrick Murphy (FL-18) announced he would run for Senate in 2016, giving Democrats a credible candidate for GOP Sen. Marco Rubio's seat. But Democrats will be hard pressed to keep his House seat along Florida's Treasure Coast. Murphy is one of just five remaining House Democrats in a district won by GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney; Romney took 52...

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, March 20, 2015

The race for next year's Republican presidential nomination is going to be fascinating on so many levels, but none more than the challenges facing former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.

Arizona House|By David Wasserman, March 20, 2015

As we noted several weeks ago, Arizona was a rare bright spot for Democrats in the 2012 round of redistricting: under a new map, they captured five of the state's nine districts that year and managed to hold four of those seats in 2014. But if the Supreme Court rules against the constitutionality of Arizona's Independent Redistricting Commission, Republicans could very well redraw the map to...

National Politics|By Amy Walter, March 18, 2015

For the last couple of weeks there’s been plenty of buzz about an imminent Marco Rubio “Moment.” As one non-affiliated GOP strategist remarked to me the other day, “Rubio is simply the best natural athlete on the field.” He’s great on the stump, comfortable on the trail and confident around the press. But, with another bi-lingual, pro-immigration reform Floridian in the race as well as plenty...

Illinois House |By David Wasserman, March 17, 2015

Illinois GOP Rep. Aaron Schock announced today that he would resign effective March 31 amid mounting questions about his improper use of campaign and official funds. Earlier this month, Schock repaid $40,000 in official funds he used to redecorate his office in the style of "Downton Abbey." Schock's resignation, first reported by Politico, is embarrassing for a party that not long ago counted...

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, March 17, 2015

For some time, polls have found former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush with higher negative ratings than one might expect of someone who has never before run for president or, until recently, maintained a high national political profile. (Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)In the newly released NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll conducted March 1 through 5, among 1,000 adults nationwide, 34 percent of those...

Political Advertising|By Elizabeth Wilner, March 16, 2015

A political media buying firm is asking the FCC to make it easier for candidates to get ads on TV cheaply in the weeks leading up to an election. After Tuesday, the deadline for any last comments from stakeholders, the petition will begin wending its way around the agency with a verdict likely to come later this year. Just in time for the 2016 air wars, and just in time to make nonpolitical TV...

  • 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 245 Republicans and 188 Democrats, with two vacancies. Thanks to President Obama's standing and the GOP's natural midterm turnout advantages, Republicans gained 13 seats in 2014, and if they win upcoming special elections in New York's 11th CD and Mississippi's 1st CD, 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. 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.

Florida  |  District 18  |  Murphy (D)

Likely D
Toss Up

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

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Charlie Cook's Column

Jeb Bush's Headwinds

March 20, 2015

The race for next year's Republican presidential nomination is going to be fascinating on so many levels, but none more than the challenges facing former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.

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Columnists

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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