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House Overview|By David Wasserman, October 29, 2009

In five short days, Democrats are likely to get a sneak preview of what life is like without President Obama at the top of the ticket, and it won't be picturesque. All signs point to a GOP sweep in Virginia, and if Democrats prevail in races for New Jersey governor and Congress in NY-23, they will win with percentages well below Obama's thanks to split opposition. For Democrats, the downside of a…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, October 27, 2009

There are a number of conflicting dynamics and questions that are quite important to understanding next year's critical midterm elections. First, consider the economy. While forecasts are estimating that GDP growth will range from 2.5 percent to as high as 4 percent, virtually all of the projections call for unemployment to reach about 10 percent and linger through the midterms. And yet productiv…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, October 24, 2009

It's no secret that this country has become incredibly polarized along partisan lines -- witness the difference in President Obama's approval ratings, according to Gallup polling for October 12-18. Ob…

House Overview|By David Wasserman, October 22, 2009

CALIFORNIA CA-01: Mike Thompson (D) – Northern coast: Eureka, Napa Solid Democratic. The Napa Valley's absorption of Bay Area liberalism, Mendocino and Arcata's leftward free-spiritedness, and redistricting have driven this once-marginal coastal district into the ranks of solid Democratic seats. In 2008, President Obama carried this district with more than two thirds of the vote. Meanwhile, Th…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, October 20, 2009

This column has focused, some would say dwelled, for several months on problems congressional Democrats face as the 2010 midterm elections approach. To be sure, the odds are very high that the party will fare worse than the average for post-World War II, first-term, midterm elections, where the majority party typically loses 16 House seats and sees a wash in the Senate. Having heard that ground…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, October 17, 2009

What if someone told you that 17 percent of American adults -- one out of every six civilians -- is unemployed, working part-time but seeking a full-time job, or would like to be employed but has given up the search? That would make the current 9.8 percent unemployment number pale in comparison, right? It also might really get your attention if you were the party in control of the White House and…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, October 13, 2009

Unquestionably, the most memorable phrase of the 1992 presidential contest was "It's the economy, stupid." The slogan grew out of a three-phrase sign that James Carville hung in Bill Clinton's headquarters to keep campaign workers focused: "1) Change vs. more of the same; 2) The economy, stupid; 3) Don't forget health care." Perhaps that sign should be posted in the Obama White House, given that…

Column.national-journal-column|October 13, 2009

Obviously, there are many variables that can drive a political party's fortune in next November's elections, but the economy and jobs dwarf all others. Polls may show a majority of Americans understan…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, October 2, 2009

One of the toughest challenges for a party after it wins a big national election is matching its agenda to voters' desires. So, having ridden a message of change to back-to-back victories, the Democratic Party needed to figure out what kind of change the public actually wanted. In 2006, the key swing voters were weary of a succession of Republican scandals and had lost faith in the Iraq war. Even…

  • 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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Charlie Cook's Column

How Fake News Undermines Democracy

January 17, 2017

Al­most 130 years ago, Ger­man philo­soph­er Friedrich Ni­et­z­sche wrote, “That which does not kill us, makes us stronger.” In a per­verse way, BuzzFeed and CNN made Pres­id­ent-elect Trump stronger this week.

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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, 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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