GOP Rep. Tim Griffin's surprising decision to retire after two terms in the House moves our rating of Arkansas's 2nd CD from Solid Republican to Lean Republican. The last House incumbent to retire after less than three terms was Ohio Republican Steve Austria in 2012, who stepped down after redistricting eliminated his seat, which makes Griffin's choice all the more unusual.President Obama took...
Here’s a question for conservatives and Republicans: Going into the 2012 Election Day, or even in the last few days before Election Day, did you think Mitt Romney was going to win? A couple of months ago, did you think the strategy of threatening to shut down the government or prevent raising the debt ceiling, to force the outright repeal or defunding of Obamacare, would really work? Romney...
Earlier this year, a senior House Democrat ribbed our pessimistic forecast for their 2014 prospects by suggesting, "Why can't you just say 'Democrats can't win a majority in the House, but Republicans can lose one?'" That admonition has never seemed more appropriate.Given the GOP-tilted nature of the congressional map and the dynamics of midterm turnout, we have always maintained that House...
Mostly as a result of the damage House Republicans sustained during the 16-day government shutdown, we are making changes to our ratings in 15 House seats, all but one in Democrats' direction. Democrats still have a very uphill climb to a majority, and it's doubtful they can sustain this month's momentum for another year. But Republicans' actions have energized Democratic fundraising and...
Conservative icon and Yale graduate William F. Buckley was fond of saying, "I'd rather be governed by the first 2,000 names in the Boston telephone directory than by the faculty of Harvard." At this point I would take the first 535 names out of the Cincinnati phone book over the current Congress.
By now it's clear we’ve got big problems with our political system. We also have lots of ideas for the causes of our current dysfunction. Redistricting! SuperPACS! Tea Party! The Media! What we haven't spent enough time talking about is a solution. If one of the biggest disincentives to compromise is the fact incumbents are more worried about placating their base than winning...
Google is a pretty amazing thing. The other day I was thinking about the government-shutdown mess and how it might be resolved, despite the element in the Republican Party, and specifically on Capitol Hill, that remains committed to extending the shutdown as a reasonable tactic in the war on big government. Most other Republicans, deep down, have real misgivings about all this, and know it's...
There is no question that the Republican Party’s brand is experiencing grievous damage. In fact, you would be quite believable if you were to suggest that the GOP has been making an active, masochistic effort to isolate itself from moderate, independent, and swing voters, further exacerbating all the problems with target constituencies that cost Mitt Romney the presidency and the GOP a national...
GOP Rep. Bill Young's decision to retire after a staggering 22 terms creates the first Toss Up open seat House race of the 2014 cycle. Symbolically and mathematically, this is a setback for Republicans at a tricky time: Young is the longest-serving Republican in the House (first elected in 1970), recently came out for a "clean" continuing resolution, and is a proven political icon who thrives...
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. In 2016, 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 has been helped by open seats, particularly compared to the last three cycles. Democrats need five seats – or four if they retain the White House – to take back the majority. Wth two weeks before Election Day, Democrats appear to be on track to pick up between four and six seats.
The 2016 election resulted in a House breakdown of 240 Republicans and 194 Democrats, with one Louisiana seat headed to a December 10 runoff that is very likely to be won by a Republican. Democrats scored a net gain of six seats, a disappointing result for a party that had hoped to pick up more than 15 and cut the GOP's majority in half. Democrats' best hope for a majority in 2018 would be an unpopular President Donald Trump. But given Republicans' redistricting advantages and how well sorted-out the House has become, it could still be very difficult for Democrats to pick up the 24 seats they would need.
The 2016 cycle will host 12 gubernatorial contests, including the special election in Oregon. Democrats are defending eight seats to four for Republicans. The marquis contests will be the Democratic-held open seats in Missouri, New Hampshire and West Virginia, 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.
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Charlie Cook's Column
Hostile Swing Voters Spell Trouble for House RepublicansFebruary 28, 2017
The two-thirds of Republicans in the House who have never served when the GOP held majorities in the House and Senate alongside a GOP president can be forgiven for not remembering the last time they were similarly situated. It was 2006, and they lost 30 seats in the House. When Democrats were last in that situation, it was 2010 and they lost 63 House seats. When one party...Read more »
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