Unless the economy collapses, next year's Senate races will either be a wash for the two major parties or a disaster for the Democrats. Not only do the Democrats have more seats (19) to defend than the Republicans (15), but geography is not on the Democrats' side. Of the seven Senate seats that Republicans have lost in the last two elections, four were in states that Democrat Al Gore won in 2000.…
Right now, only three things are of any importance in the fight for the Democratic presidential nomination: money, Iowa, and New Hampshire. And the crowded field of candidates has begun dividing into five "haves" and four "have nots." Official second-quarter fundraising totals won't be available until July 15, but how each campaign has progressed -- or failed to progress – is becoming apparent. A…
History tells us that presidential job-approval ratings this far in advance of an election are not a reliable indicator of whether a president will win re-election. Nevertheless, strategists in both p…
As we transition from an abbreviated spring to summer, the political environment is undergoing what appears to be a similar metamorphosis. During a brief but strong ramp-up period immediately before t…
The 2004 presidential election is likely to be a game of political tug-of-war. President Bush and his fellow Republicans will be pulling hard to keep the public and the news media focused on his stron…
First, keep in mind that, over the last 30 years, every single Republican presidential nominee and every Democrat save one, Bill Clinton in 1992, won either the Iowa caucus or the New Hampshire primary, or both. The one exception during that period, covering elections from 1976 onward, featured a Democratic candidate who was from Iowa (Tom Harkin) and a combination of a next-door candidate in New…
The partisan acrimony that began intensifying in the House in the mid- to late 1980s now extends far beyond that chamber. Just look at this week's news. The Senate is facing a horrible fight over President Bush's judicial nominations. While the Senate has never been quite the embodiment of gentility that some commentators make it out to be, it has now become even more contentious than the House-i…
Columbia, S.C.-For political reporters, Democratic operatives and activists, and political junkies of all persuasions, this past weekend's South Carolina Democratic Party State Convention, accompanied by the first debate for Democrats running for the 2004 presidential nomination, was a long-overdue fix after months in which foreign policy and war have dominated the news. Whether it was the annual…
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 »