In some ways, it is easy to dismiss what happened in the midterm elections and to chalk up Democrats' gains to voters' displeasure over the war in Iraq, scandals, and a feeling that Congress has grown…
This year I will celebrate -- actually, observe is probably a better word -- the fifth anniversary of my 50th birthday. Unless Clinton wins Pennsylvania, Indiana, Kentucky, North Carolina and a few other places by landslide margins, her donors will stop giving and her campaign will grind to a halt. Perhaps with advancing years we become a bit less tolerant -- for me, it's less patience with the…
Even as the race for the presidency thunders overhead, House Editor David Wasserman takes a look at the big picture in the lower chamber. Usually, it is the party in the minority that seeks to "expand the playing field" of competitive races. So far, the greatest irony involving House races in 2008 may be that the opposite is true today. In 2006, an essential ingredient in Democrats' successful c…
You have to hand it to the state of Florida and its Democratic Party: When something is just too darned difficult for them, like, say, holding an unscheduled election, they just admit it. There's something to be said for knowing one's limitations, as Clint Eastwood's character pointed out in Magnum Force. Over the past five years, at least 16 congressional districts around the country had unexpec…
The process of rating Senate races--or any race for that matter--is a mix of science and art. There more science--quantitative data like polling, voting patterns, candidate quality and fundraising--there is in the equation, the easier it is to rate a race. But, when there isn't much hard data or a set of conflicting factors, the process becomes much more dictated by art--taking everything we kno…
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
Two Special Elections Add Suspense to MidtermsApril 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...Read more »
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