Notwithstanding the District of Columbia's inept and unsuccessful bid for attention with a Jan. 13 shadow Democratic presidential primary, the opening bell for the Democratic nomination rings at 6:30 p.m. (CST) on Monday, Jan. 19 in Iowa. As the Iowa caucuses get closer, the outlook for the Democratic nomination gets murkier and murkier. Tracking polls going into the holidays indicated that forme…
To hear the holiday cocktail party chatter, you'd think the government could save a lot of money by simply canceling the presidential election. Now that the economy is booming and Saddam Hussein has been captured, what's the point, since President Bush is certain to be re-elected, right? Indeed, the significance of the events of the past six weeks should not be minimized. Bush's surprise Thanksgi…
The news early Sunday morning of the capture of deposed Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein by U.S. troops certainly shakes up the American political scene, but this development could conceivably change the…
Pronouncements by political insiders and the media that Al Gore's endorsement of former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean cements Dean's front-runner status for the Democratic presidential nomination ignore the fact that Dean had about a 75 percent chance of being the nominee before Gore spoke up. And those odds haven't really changed much. Dean was already even or ahead in Iowa, and he commands an enormo…
As the fight for the Democratic presidential nomination heats up, the electability argument is being bandied about more often. Establishment-oriented political watchers, and particularly backers of Rep. Dick Gephardt, D-Mo., and some other candidates, argue that while former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean appeals to the Democratic base, he would have a tougher time than Gephardt winning a general elect…
Within hours after the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts effectively legalized civil marriages last week for gay couples in the state, it became an article of faith that the gay marriage issue would dominate the 2004 elections. Whether voters see the war in Iraq as essential to our national security or as an ill-advised quagmire, few people put the gay marriage issue above it on their list…
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
Trump’s Policies Are a Result of On-the-Job TrainingApril 20, 2017
The media and critics on the Left are having a field day attacking President Trump’s rather numerous and often dramatic changes of heart on policy—whether China manipulates its currency, the necessity of the U.S. Export-Import Bank and NATO, and the U.S.’s strategic posture in Syria.Read more »
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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.Download »