President News & Analysis

Brett Kavanaugh and the Midterm Effect

by Stuart Rothenberg July 16, 2018 · 9:20 AM EDT

The selection of Brett Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court will have less of an impact on November’s midterms than you think. Sure, depending how the confirmation process develops, it’s possible the nomination could affect a handful of races, but the most likely scenario will not change the overall trajectory of…

The Wrong Fight at the Wrong Time for the GOP

by Stuart Rothenberg June 29, 2018 · 11:34 AM EDT

You need to hand it to President Donald Trump, his entire administration and his party. It takes more than a little chutzpah to act in a way that seems callous to the concerns of children. First, it was gun control. Now it is immigration in general, and separating children from…

Steve Bannon Is Right About the Midterms — Until He Isn’t

by Stuart Rothenberg June 14, 2018 · 8:10 AM EDT

Former Trump campaign chief executive and White House strategist Steve Bannon recently told CNN’s Fareed Zakaria that the midterm elections will be “an up or down vote” on the president. He also asserted that it’s imperative that Donald Trump nationalize the midterm elections.

“Trump’s second presidential race will be on…

Trump Numbers Are Up. And Down. But Really Unchanged.

by Stuart Rothenberg April 23, 2018 · 12:44 PM EDT

New national polls show voters are more upbeat about President Donald Trump’s performance and more pessimistic about the Democrats’ chances of taking back the House. Or not.

An April 8-11 Washington Post-ABC News poll showed Trump’s job approval rating at 40 percent, while 56 percent disapproved of his performance.

An…

Can a President Preaching Change Lead a Party of Incumbents?

by Stuart Rothenberg April 13, 2018 · 10:24 AM EDT

I have long argued that on the most fundamental level, all elections are choices between continuity and change.

The “in” party needs voters to believe that things are going well — or at least improving — while the “out” party needs to sell its message of change.

On rare occasions,…

Why the Gun Issue Has Shifted (It’s Not What You Think)

by Stuart Rothenberg March 13, 2018 · 9:07 AM EDT

The gun debate has shifted dramatically. Suddenly, it looks as if the issue will benefit Democrats in November, not Republicans.

The reason for the shift doesn’t rest primarily on the intelligence and commitment of the students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, although many of them have…

The GOP Catch-22 — Donald Trump

by Stuart Rothenberg February 14, 2018 · 9:05 AM EST

Even if you think Republican leaders in Congress have shown no spine in responding to President Donald Trump’s more outrageous and inappropriate comments, you ought to be willing to acknowledge that GOP legislators are caught in a no-win situation.

It’s always tempting to tell incumbents of an unpopular president’s party…

The Stunning ‘Role of Government’ Numbers

by Stuart Rothenberg February 8, 2018 · 9:12 AM EST

While most people seem fascinated by shifts in presidential job approval and national ballot tests, I’ve always thought that the “role of government” question asked in the NBC News/Wall Street Journal survey doesn’t get the attention it deserves.

The responses to that question offer interesting insights into how voters see…

Watch the Polls, Ignore the Post-Shutdown Chatter

by Stuart Rothenberg January 29, 2018 · 9:11 AM EST

Over the past few weeks, members of Congress, journalists and television hosts agreed on one thing: The looming government shutdown was a huge deal. Then, after the shutdown ended, those same people pontificated about who won and who lost, as well as about liberal dissatisfaction with the deal to open…

The Democrats’ Savior

by Stuart Rothenberg January 16, 2018 · 9:05 AM EST

One year ago, as Donald Trump was preparing to take the oath of office, Democrats were in disarray. Supporters of 2016 nominee Hillary Clinton and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders were pointing fingers at each other, the Democratic National Committee was in disgrace, and Democratic voters were demoralized.

Now, Trump has…