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National Politics|By Amy Walter, October 12, 2016

Over the last year we’ve witnessed a familiar pattern:  Trump does or says something controversial/contentious/reprehensible (Judge Curiel, The Khan family, Alicia Machado), his poll numbers plummet and talk ensues about a Hillary Clinton “landslide” and a down ballot wipe out. The #nevertrump continent engages in Twitter schadenfreude.

National Politics|By Amy Walter, October 10, 2016

Lincoln-Douglas this was not. In fact, the debate Sunday night between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump was ugly, angry and soul-crushing. It was less a forum for undecided voters than a grudge match between two people who really, really don’t like each other. At the end of the day, however, this debate did little to change the trajectory of the campaign. This is still Clinton’s race to lose....

National Politics|By Amy Walter, October 3, 2016

In a campaign where the normal laws of political gravity often feel as if they don’t apply, it’s hard to know just how impactful the New York Times report of Donald Trump’s tax returns will play out over the next few weeks of this campaign. Despite Trump’s series of seemingly campaign-destroying statements, positions and behaviors, he remains very much “in” this contest with a narrow, but...

National Politics|By Amy Walter, September 27, 2016

The first debate of the 2016 fall season has concluded with a whimper more than a bang. If you were expecting the sky to fall or the race to be completed upended, you were sorely disappointed. If you went into the debate expecting or hoping see a more thoughtful, nuanced and disciplined Trump, you didn’t get it. If you expected - or hoped - to hear Hillary Clinton’s vision for the future or the...

National Politics|By Amy Walter, September 23, 2016

The two major party conventions are now behind us and the consequent bounces have had time to settle giving us a presidential race that isn’t over, but one that is fully developed. Many observers have noted that in the last six decades of modern presidential polling, the candidate with the lead in the polls two weeks after the final convention has always won. Presumably, but not certainly there...

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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The 2016 Political Environment

Updated November 25, 2015 | As the 2016 election cycle begins to take shape, the Cook Political Report has identified several metrics worth monitoring between now and Election Day.

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