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National Politics|By Charlie Cook, June 15, 2004

Soon after the death of former President Ronald Reagan, there was a buzz around town that this event could have a lasting effect on the presidential race. Some suggested that the "right direction" polling numbers might bump up, due to a wave of nostalgia. Others speculated that Republican Party identification numbers might even jump up a bit. I must admit that I was extremely skeptical. The count…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, June 12, 2004

Memorial Day weekend and the death of President Reagan have combined to give the 2004 presidential campaign the equivalent of the All-Star break in baseball season. So this is an excellent time to step back and assess where this contest stands. Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts, the presumptive Democratic nominee, leads President Bush by 3 to 6 points -- depending upon whether all registered voter…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, June 10, 2004

John Kerry's selection of John Edwards of North Carolina as his running mate tells us something very important about the senator from Massachusetts. Sure, Kerry could have chosen someone with more political experience, someone more steeped in the history, details, and nuances of public policy issues, both foreign and domestic. But no other Democrat could boost Kerry's poll numbers as much as Edwar…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, June 8, 2004

The past few days have produced two interesting developments in the Senate race in Florida to succeed retiring Democratic Sen. Bob Graham. The first is the endorsement Monday by National Republican Senatorial Committee Chairman George Allen of Virginia of former HUD Secretary Mel Martinez in the GOP primary. Despite a field of eight, the Aug. 31 primary contest has come down to Martinez and the 2…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, June 6, 2004

The hallmark of this presidential election year seems to be that it has more plot twists and turns than an Agatha Christie novel. The political world spent the holiday weekend awaiting a vice-presidential pick from the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts (finally learning this morning that Sen. John Edwards, D-N.C., would join Kerry on the ticket). And the…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, June 5, 2004

Democrat Stephanie Herseth's slim victory over Republican Larry Diedrich in Tuesday's special election to fill South Dakota's at-large House seat has helped to keep the spring in the step of House Democrats. They were already riding high from Democrat Ben Chandler's victory in the February 17 special election in Kentucky's 6th District. Democrats are eager to read enormous significance into th…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, June 3, 2004

Neither the horse race matchups between President Bush and Sen. John Kerry nor the president's job-approval ratings have moved much in the past three months. Indeed, the Associated Press/Ipsos national surveys, which pegged Bush's overall ratings at 48 percent approval 50 percent disapproval in April, held steady in May and June. And in trial-heat polling, both Bush and Kerry have averaged about 4…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, June 1, 2004

No more than seven weeks from now, Democratic Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts will have to announce his selection of a vice presidential running mate, a decision as important as any that a presidential nominee will make. By last count, The Hotline had counted 68 names that had been mentioned in the media as potential running mates, some more serious than others. The conventional wisdom long has…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, May 29, 2004

Panic is never a particularly attractive trait. But  congressional Republicans were beginning to show some last week.  Senate Republicans have been aware for a month or two that their  chamber will be "in play" this November. The extreme anxiety  among House Republicans, however, is new. One powerful House  chairman pulled me aside last week to ask, "Are we in trouble?"&nb…

  • 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

No Easy Wins for GOP Lawmakers Under Trump

June 23, 2017

For con­gres­sion­al Re­pub­lic­ans in the new norm of the Trump pres­id­ency, noth­ing is easy, and everything is hard. Rais­ing the debt ceil­ing in or­der to keep the gov­ern­ment from de­fault­ing on its debt is nor­mally easy; now it is hard. Passing an om­ni­bus budget bill to simply keep the gov­ern­ment op­er­at­ing (for­get the idea of passing the full bat­tery of 12 ap­pro­pri­ations...

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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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