Senate News & Analysis

2020 Senate Overview (Jan. 1, 2019) Alabama - Kansas

January 4, 2019 · 2:29 PM EST

Alabama. Doug Jones (D), elected 2017 special (50%). Jones defeated former state supreme court justice Roy Moore in a high-profile special election. It was the first Senate win for Alabama Democrats since 1992, when now-GOP Sen. Richard Shelby was re-elected as a Democrat. (He switched parties in 1994.) Even with…

2020 Senate Overview (Jan. 4, 2019) Kentucky - New Mexico

January 4, 2019 · 2:28 PM EST

Kentucky. Mitch McConnell (R), elected 1984 (50%), 1990 (52%), 1996 (55%), 2002 (65%), 2008 (53%) and 2014 (56%). As majority leader of the Senate and a critical piece of President Trump’s effort to reshape the courts through judicial confirmations, McConnell is and will be a Democratic target. But defeating him…

2020 Senate Overview (Jan. 4, 2019) North Carolina - Wyoming

January 4, 2019 · 2:27 PM EST

North Carolina. Thom Tillis (R), elected 2014 (49%). The Republican defeated Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan in one of the closest races of the 2014 cycle. Tillis will be a target this cycle considering Barack Obama won the state in 2008 and Democrats won the governorship in 2016. But the party…

Why We’re Not Releasing 2020 Race Ratings Yet

by Nathan L. Gonzales December 21, 2018 · 8:30 AM EST

I love elections, particularly congressional races, but I’m just not in a hurry to jump to 2020. And I’m completely fine with holding off on releasing our race ratings until next year.

If I didn’t like elections, I would probably need to take a long look at doing something else…

North Carolina: Blue Wave Steered Clear of ‘Blue Moon’ Election

by Leah Askarinam December 14, 2018 · 2:30 PM EST

Democrats gained at least 40 House seats in races across the country, but the wave’s course veered from two key states: Ohio and North Carolina.

Looking at top-of-the-ballot results, it’s no surprise that Democrats failed to chip into Ohio’s House delegation. Democratic performance statewide indicated a fundamental problem for the…

Post-Midterms Baseline and Vote Above Replacement (VAR) Update

by Ryan Matsumoto December 14, 2018 · 2:29 PM EST

Last month, Inside Elections revealed two of our new statistics: Baseline and Vote Above Replacement (VAR).

Baseline captures a state or congressional district’s political performance by combining all federal and state election results over the last four election cycles into a single average. VAR measures the relative strength of political…

Expect Record Turnout in 2020

by Nathan L. Gonzales December 13, 2018 · 2:53 PM EST

With the 2018 elections coming to an end, it’s clear that voters set a modern record for turnout in a midterm. And there’s no reason to believe voters won’t set another record two years from now.

According to the United States Election Project, turnout this year was nearly 50 percent…

Are White Evangelicals the Saviors of the GOP?

by Nathan L. Gonzales December 12, 2018 · 3:37 PM EST

Amid all the talk about shifting demographics and political changes over the last decade, one key voting group has remained virtually unchanged: white evangelicals.

According to one evangelical leader, a record number of white evangelicals voted in the 2018 midterms after an inspired turnout effort.

“This is the most…

The 2018 Midterms as the Buffet Election

by Nathan L. Gonzales December 3, 2018 · 8:55 AM EST

When I was a kid in small-town Oregon, my family would occasionally go to King’s Table, and my sister and I would get free rein at the buffet.

I became famous in my own family for my condiment salad — an impressive collection of bacon bits, croutons, shredded cheese, sunflower…

Goodbye Midterm Dynamic, Hello Presidential Politics

by Stuart Rothenberg November 29, 2018 · 9:15 AM EST

Midterm elections and presidential cycles have such different dynamics that the two should almost never be discussed together. That will not prevent people from doing so, but they should resist the temptation. 

Midterms tend to be referendums on the incumbent president, while each presidential election is a choice between nominees.