Senate News & Analysis

2018 Senate Overview: The Map vs. Reality

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Nathan L. Gonzales July 7, 2017 · 3:00 PM EDT

Democrats are just three seats away from a Senate majority, yet the fight for the House (where Democrats need to gain 24 seats) is the emerging storyline of the 2018 midterm elections. That’s because it’s all about the map.

The first step for Democrats in their best-case scenario is to…

2018 Senate Overview (July 7, 2017) Alabama - Maine

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July 7, 2017 · 2:59 PM EDT

ALABAMA - Luther Strange (R) appointed 2017. Special Election. GOP Gov. Robert Bentley appointed state Attorney General Luther Strange to the seat after Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions was confirmed as President Donald Trump’s attorney general. The appointment was controversial considering Strange’s office was investigating the governor for alleged improper use…

2018 Senate Overview (July 7, 2017) Maryland - Ohio

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July 7, 2017 · 2:58 PM EDT

MARYLAND - Ben Cardin (D) elected 2006 (54%), 2012 (56%). Unless GOP Gov. Larry Hogan decides to challenge Cardin instead of seeking re-election (which he’s not going to do), Republicans aren’t going to win this seat. In 2016, Clinton defeated Trump 60-34 percent and Democrat Chris Van Hollen defeated Republican…

2018 Senate Overview (July 7, 2017) Oklahoma - Wyoming

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July 7, 2017 · 2:57 PM EDT

PENNSYLVANIA - Bob Casey, Jr. (D) elected 2006 (59%), 2012 (54%). With Trump’s 49-48 percent win over Clinton and Sen. Pat Toomey’s re-election in 2016, Republicans are feeling emboldened about their chances of defeating Casey next year. Now they just need a candidate. Rep. Mike Kelly looked determined to run…

GOP Campaign Tracker Violates Bipartisan Truce (Again)

Nathan L. Gonzales July 7, 2017 · 9:31 AM EDT

Trackers have become standard operating procedure in today’s campaigns, as young operatives follow and record candidates’ every move and whisper with the hope of catching a gaffe. But up to this point, there has been rare bipartisan agreement that the Senate hallways were off limits.

“New low for 2018 campaign…

For GOP, Health Care Bill Looks Riskier by the Day

Stuart Rothenberg July 5, 2017 · 4:01 PM EDT

The new Republican National Committee web video “Where’s Their Plan?” purports to place the onus for the nation’s health care crisis on Democrats, but instead shows how far off base the RNC is in understanding how the issue is likely to play next year if the party can’t pass a…

How Divided Parties Survive and Thrive

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Nathan L. Gonzales June 23, 2017 · 3:00 PM EDT

Democrats were divided before the special election in Georgia, and Jon Ossoff’s loss certainly didn’t help heal any internal wounds. The party went “all in” to win the suburban Atlanta seat and came up short in the type of district the party needs to win to get to a majority…

The GOP’s Political Gamble on the Environment

Stuart Rothenberg June 4, 2017 · 8:00 AM EDT

While activists on both sides of the aisle and both ends of the ideological spectrum argue about whether President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris accord is a good idea, the political risks of that decision are undeniable.

The president’s announcement is likely to elevate the salience of “the environment”…

Lessons for Trump Detractors, Members of Congress From a Loyalty Expert

Nathan L. Gonzales May 18, 2017 · 11:40 AM EDT

You’ve probably never heard of James Kane, but elected officials, party strategists, and even some reporters could learn from his perspective as a behavioral scientist (instead of a partisan hack) about how to fracture President Donald Trump’s base and the future of the two parties. 

I rarely have time…

Alabama Senate Special: What a Short Strange Trip It’s Been

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Nathan L. Gonzales May 5, 2017 · 2:30 PM EDT

With an unpopular governor finally headed for the exits because of term limits and without a U.S. Senate seat up for re-election, Alabama was slated for a sleepy 2018 cycle. But President Donald Trump tapped Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions to be his Attorney General, opening up his Senate seat which…