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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...

Arkansas House|By David Wasserman, March 13, 2015

Just five years ago, Democrats held Arkansas's governorship, both its Senate seats, and three out of its four House seats. Today, Republicans hold all of these offices - a total shutout. In 2014, Democrats nominated personable and well-funded candidates in the 2nd and 4th CDs, only to watch both lose soundly. Arkansas may be past the point where Democrats are viable candidates for federal...

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, March 13, 2015

If I knew with certainty that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was not going to be the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee, I still wouldn't think this kerfuffle over her State Department emails was responsible.

National Politics|By Amy Walter, March 11, 2015

Ask anyone on the Acela corridor who the frontrunner and/or likely nominee for the GOP is/will be and you are most likely to hear the name Jeb Bush. After all, he’s going to have bucket-loads of cash. He’s vacuuming up GOP talent for his campaign staff. He’s substantive and comfortable talking policy. And, unlike many of his contemporaries, he’s yet to make a significant flub on the campaign...

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, March 10, 2015

A question I often am asked is: "Who would you bet on to win the presidency?" Personally, I don't bet on politics, but here's my current take on the 2016 presidential race—with, of course, the caveat that we don't know which campaigns will turn out the best in terms of organization, strategy, tactics, or execution, much less which candidates will step on land mines along the way.

  • 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.

Nevada  |  Senate  |  Reid (D)

Lean D
Toss Up

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

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Charlie Cook's Column

Clinton's Rough Road Ahead

March 27, 2015

The front-page headline in The Washington Post said it all: "Democrats in key states ask: Where is Hillary?" Putting aside the simple facts that the Iowa caucus and New Hampshire primary are both 10 months away and that Hillary Clinton is not expected to officially enter the race before next month, this headline says so much more. In fact, it telegraphs the coming story line.

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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, 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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