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National Politics|By Charlie Cook, June 11, 2012

It isn’t hard to find plenty of evidence as to why this election is so close, why voters are apprehensive about both their own futures and the country’s. Whether it’s watching live video of two focus groups with “Walmart moms” in Richmond, Va., and Las Vegas by a bipartisan pair of pollsters, or reading a report to clients from a Wall Street research firm on the economic hardship during this elect…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, June 7, 2012

The “if it feels good, do it” school of political decision-making experienced yet another painful lesson in its ill-fated effort to recall Wisconsin’s GOP Gov. Scott Walker this week. If ever there was a case of a terrible idea poorly executed, this was it. Putting aside whether Walker should or shouldn’t have been elected governor to begin with, or whether he has or has not made wise decisions o…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, June 4, 2012

Everyone who avidly follows politics has his or her own list of the true “swing states” in this presidential election. The lists that really matter, however, are the ones kept by top strategists for the Obama and Romney campaigns, and the ones kept by the one large Democratic and five Republican-oriented super PACs and by other major presidential advertisers this year. Figures compiled by Elizabet…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, May 31, 2012

Gallup has now finished its first six full weeks of tracking surveys for the 2012 presidential campaign, interviewing 20,565 registered voters. Yes, you guessed it: President Obama and Mitt Romney are tied, 46 percent to 46 percent. The margin of error for a sample of this size is just under seven-tenths of a percentage point; Gallup, though, modestly reports it at +/- 1 percent, for the sake of s…

Senate Overview|By Jennifer Duffy, May 31, 2012

Last month we took a look at what Senate Republicans need to do to win the majority in November. Our focus was on the factors and recent events that might prevent them from reaching a majority, parti…

New York House|By David Wasserman, May 31, 2012

House Editor David Wasserman writes: If California's radical new districts and top-two primary system have ensured the biggest shakeup in the west, New York's new court-drawn Congressional map, earlier than usual June primary, and "fusion" balloting system could be the East's chaotic answer. New York lost two House seats in reapportionment. As decisions of Democratic Rep. Maurice Hinchey and GOP R…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, May 24, 2012

Not much in the just-released NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll conflicts with the story line that we’re going to see a lot of close races this fall. Democratic pollster Peter Hart and Republican poll-taker Bill McInturff found that 48 percent of the 1,000 American adults interviewed (including a subsample of cell-phone users) approve of the job that President Obama has done. This percentage is 2…

New York House|By David Wasserman, May 24, 2012

House Editor David Wasserman writes: If California's radical new districts and top-two primary system have ensured the biggest shakeup in the west, New York's new court-drawn Congressional map, earlier than usual June primary, and "fusion" balloting system could be the East's chaotic answer. New York lost two House seats in reapportionment, and while the decisions of Democratic Rep. Maurice Hinche…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, May 21, 2012

Talk to economists and people who work in the financial markets these days and what you’ll hear is reminiscent of the ominous warnings that you occasionally hear from pilots about strong weather fronts. We’re facing not one wave of turbulence, but several. First, there’s Europe and the eurozone. It’s possible that the situation could be worse in Greece, but not that much worse. There’s a pretty…

  • 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.

Wisconsin  |  District 08  |  Ribble (R)

Lean R
Likely R

New York  |  District 24  |  Katko (R)

Lean R
Likely R

New York  |  District 22  |  Hanna (R)

Toss Up
Lean R

New York  |  District 03  |  Israel (D)

Likely D
Lean D

New York  |  District 01  |  Zeldin (R)

Lean R
Likely R

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  • Perhaps the best nonpartisan tracker of Congressional races.
    – David Broder, The Washington Post

Charlie Cook's Column

Two Special Elections Add Suspense to Midterms

April 25, 2017

Two con­gres­sion­al spe­cial elec­tions in as many weeks make clear that while the Re­pub­lic­an Party is not in a free fall, things are not co­pacet­ic, either. Re­pub­lic­an state Treas­urer Ron Estes won last week’s spe­cial elec­tion in Kan­sas’s 4th Dis­trict to fill the va­cancy cre­ated by Mike Pom­peo’s nom­in­a­tion to head the CIA, but his 5-point vic­tory was far short of the...

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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, Senior 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 2016 election.

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