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National Politics|By Amy Walter, June 15, 2017

So much is happening in Washington and yet nothing is happening at all. The investigation into Russian meddling into the 2016 campaign continues to get lots of attention (and produce a lot of leaks), but it’s not likely to come to a conclusion anytime soon. Republicans fret privately about the president and publicly lament his lack of Twitter discipline, yet they show no signs of abandoning...

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, June 13, 2017

We’re only 140 days in­to a new pres­id­en­tial ad­min­is­tra­tion and yet there is already a stream of art­icles spec­u­lat­ing about the con­test for the 2020 Demo­crat­ic nom­in­a­tion. There is a side of me that be­lieves it is much too soon to start talk­ing about that, but this con­ver­sa­tion is already tak­ing place and in fact is get­ting fairly loud. I guess there must not be much...

Georgia House|By David Wasserman, June 9, 2017

Eleven days out, the most expensive and built-up House special election of all time is still a Toss Up. Fueled by anger towards President Trump from all corners of the country, Democrat Jon Ossoff has raised $25 million to Republican Karen Handel's $4 million, but at this point it's a story of diminishing returns: for example, Ossoff has aired three Spanish-language ads in a district where the...

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, June 9, 2017

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Cir­cus has gone out of busi­ness, but Wash­ing­ton is still provid­ing a three-ring cir­cus.

National Politics|By Amy Walter, June 7, 2017

As my colleagues and I have been writing for the last few weeks, a clear “enthusiasm” gap is opening between Democrats and Republicans, with Democrats more engaged (or is it enraged?) than their GOP counterparts. We are seeing a drop in “strong” approval for President Trump as well as less than robust turn-out from GOP voters in special elections in Kansas, Georgia and Montana.

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, June 6, 2017

With the midterm elec­tions 17 months away, it’s pretty clear that all of this Rus­sia busi­ness is rel­ev­ant. We have a new pres­id­ent with no gov­ern­ment ex­per­i­ence, a mer­cur­i­al tem­pera­ment, and an out­size ego. His hope­lessly short-staffed ad­min­is­tra­tion is strug­gling to get his le­gis­lat­ive agenda through the House and Sen­ate, where the GOP is try­ing to man­age thin...

House Overview|By David Wasserman, June 2, 2017

Republican Greg Gianforte's 50 percent to 44 percent defeat of Democrat Rob Quist in last week's Montana's special election didn't make nearly as much noise as his eleventh hour "body slam" of a reporter. In fact, the episode—which took place after nearly three quarters of voters had already cast their ballots - gave Republicans a way to excuse what was otherwise a poor performance in a...

National Journal|By Charlie Cook, June 2, 2017

Polls show Pres­id­ent Trump’s ap­prov­al num­bers lan­guish­ing around 40 per­cent, while the an­ger and in­tens­ity of the Demo­crat­ic base is rising and the Re­pub­lic­an base re­mains pretty com­pla­cent, not full of fight as it was dur­ing the Obama years. Re­flect­ing those find­ings, MS­N­BC is now top­ping both Fox News and CNN in the key demo­graph­ic of view­ers age 18 to 54, and the...

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, May 30, 2017

It’s hard for Demo­crats not to be gloat­ing right now. After last fall’s elec­tion, they’re en­titled to a bit of schaden­freude. Not­with­stand­ing Pres­id­ent Trump’s so far un­event­ful but largely fa­vor­able for­eign trip, his poll num­bers, even in Fox News polls, are in the toi­let. The le­gis­lat­ive chal­lenges fa­cing the White House and Re­pub­lic­ans are enorm­ous, Trump­care has...

  • 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.

Tennessee  |  Governor  |  Haslam (R)

Likely R
Solid R

Kansas  |  Governor  |  Brownback (R)

Likely R
Solid R

Illinois  |  Governor  |  Rauner (R)

Toss Up
Lean R

New Mexico  |  Governor  |  Martinez (R)

Lean D
Toss Up

New Jersey  |  Governor  |  Christie (R)

Likely D
Lean D

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    – David Broder, The Washington Post

Charlie Cook's Column

Democrats Find It’s Risky to Poke the GOP Elephant

June 27, 2017

There’s an old say­ing that close only counts in horse­shoes and hand gren­ades, and that’s cer­tainly how Demo­crats must feel after los­ing their third and fourth at­tempts of the year to wrestle away Re­pub­lic­an-held seats in spe­cial con­gres­sion­al elec­tions. In fair­ness, the first two shouldn’t fully count against them since the Demo­crat­ic Con­gres­sion­al Cam­paign Com­mit­tee was...

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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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