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National Politics|By Charlie Cook, February 28, 2004

Ralph Nader's decision to to run for president as an independent caused Democrats to have heart palpitations and made Republicans euphoric. But just the opposite was the case five days earlier, when, for the first time since 1991, Democrats captured a Republican seat in a House special election. With the closeness of the 2000 presidential election still fresh in most voters' minds, Nader is unlik…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, February 24, 2004

It's obvious why Democrats are nervous about consumer advocate Ralph Nader running for president. After all, it's unlikely that Nader will siphon any votes from President Bush, and the last election w…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, February 21, 2004

Sen. John Edwards's strong second-place finish in Wisconsin means the contest for the Democratic presidential nomination is not quite over. But now that Democrats have captured a Republican-held congressional seat in the special election in Kentucky's 6th Congressional District, attention may soon begin to turn, albeit briefly, to the fight for control of Congress. The Republicans hold a bare, 51-…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, February 17, 2004

No one should be surprised to find President Bush spending this past Sunday at the Daytona 500 NASCAR race. After all, this is a presidential election year, and the race is the largest single sporting event in the state of Florida — a key state that he carried by only 537 votes in 2000. Virtually all analysts put Florida in the toss-up column this year as well. The visit was a no-brainer for the B…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, February 16, 2004

"We can't survive as a party without getting more of the Hispanic vote." -- Matthew Dowd, Chicago Tribune, January 27, 2002 "...the fact (is) that the Latino vote in this country is the fastest-gro…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, February 14, 2004

At this point, Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts is engaged in mop-up duty, with his clinching of the Democratic presidential nomination being a foregone conclusion. He has won 12 of 14 primaries and caucuses, including all of those not in a state bordering an opponent's home state. And in the vast majority of cases, he has won with impressive margins. At this stage, his rivals will simply become l…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, February 10, 2004

It is dangerous to assume anything this election year. But at this point, Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry's claim on the Democratic presidential nomination looks close to rock-solid, and the contours of…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, February 7, 2004

By winning the South Carolina primary, Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina did what he had to do to survive. So did retired Army Gen. Wesley Clark by winning Oklahoma. Yet it's not easy to see how either could beat Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts for the Democratic presidential nomination. By winning five primaries and caucuses on Tuesday, including those in the two biggest states (Missouri and…

National Politics|By Charlie Cook, February 3, 2004

Normally, I try to avoid the human tendency to make sweeping, "this race is over if" generalizations because politics is a complicated business, and myriad factors can transform something that looks inevitable into something unpredictable. Having said that, if Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., manages to finish first today in Missouri and Arizona, the two largest states in the process thus far, as well as…

  • 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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    – David Broder, The Washington Post

Charlie Cook's Column

Time for a Special Prosecutor

May 18, 2017

Al­most as soon as the votes were coun­ted in Novem­ber, some Demo­crats began clam­or­ing for the ap­point­ment of a spe­cial pro­sec­utor to look at al­leg­a­tions of Rus­si­an in­volve­ment in the pres­id­en­tial cam­paign, either to hurt Hil­lary Clin­ton or help Don­ald Trump, or both. These calls were, in my view, way over the top. It has long been the case that when mem­bers of the...

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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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