Is Stutzman Still the Club for Growth’s Guy?

Since October, Stutzman has had a near-complete overhaul of his campaign team. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Club for Growth endorsed GOP Rep. Marlin Stutzman in the Indiana Senate race this summer, but the congressman was a glaring omission from the anti-tax group’s end-of-the-year fundraising email .  

The email from Club President David McIntosh highlighted House candidates Jim Banks of Indiana and Jim Duncan of North Carolina, GOP Rep. Ron DeSantis (who is running for the Senate in Florida), as well as Sens. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin and Patrick J. Toomey of Pennsylvania. But there was no mention of Stutzman, who has a 93 percent lifetime rating with the Club .  

Gubernatorial Races to Watch in 2016

Democrats in North Carolina are hoping McCrory has overplayed his hand. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images File Photo)

Despite Democrats' surprising victory last week in Louisiana — where state Rep. John Bel Edwards beat Republican Sen. David Vitter in the runoff –  they hold only 18 gubernatorial seats, compared to the 31 held by Republican governors.  

Next year, Democrats will defend eight seats, including ones in targeted U.S. Senate battle grounds such as Missouri and New Hampshire, while Republicans will defend four.  Missouri: With incumbent Democrat Jay Nixon on his way out,  Republicans believe one of their top pickup opportunities is in Missouri, where the chief executive's office has been held by Democrats for all but four of the past 22 years.  

Indiana Reps Still Wrestling With Residency

Opponents made Lugar's residence an issue in his unsuccessful run for re-election in 2012. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

For some members of Congress with young families, getting elected is the easy part; deciding whether to move your family to Washington is more difficult.  

Members of the Indiana delegation have been wrestling with the decision for decades, in a state where residency consistently pops up as a campaign issue.  

Ratings Changes in Two Governors' Races

Indiana's Pence angered both moderates and conservatives over how he handled the state's Religious Freedom Restoration Act. (File Photo by Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images)

Gubernatorial races don’t get a lot of coverage in the nation’s capital, but based on the field of presidential contenders, the chief executive of each state can be a consequential figure.  

Republicans are looking to sweep Kentucky, Mississippi and Louisiana this year for the first time in history. And the GOP is largely playing offense next year including Montana, where wealthy tech entrepreneur Greg Gianforte announced his candidacy against Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock.  

Democrats Hope Baron Hill Can Follow Donnelly's Path to the Senate

Donnelly won in Indiana by 6 points in 2012. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Former Indiana Rep. Baron P. Hill's road to the Senate won't be any easy one, but Democrats think they have a roadmap to get him there.  

Although Hill declared his candidacy in mid-May , in the middle of the 2nd quarter, he raised just $151,000 with $143,000 in the bank. That included a $2,700 donation from Indiana native son singer John Mellencamp. Meanwhile, Rep. Todd Young, one of three Republicans in the race, posted a $1 million haul in the 2nd quarter, before even declaring his Senate candidacy .  

Top Races in 2016: The Midwest

Kirk is the most vulnerable Republican senator this cycle. (File Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Editor's note: This is the sixth in a series of regional looks at the most competitive House and Senate in the Midwest Region, which includes Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin.  Ohio Senate:  The Buckeye State is no stranger to attention and 2016 is no different. Ohio will likely be a presidential battleground and will host a competitive Senate race with the majority at stake. GOP Sen. Rob Portman is seeking a second term after winning in 2010 in a great Republican year. Some Democratic strategists in Washington and Ohio want the party to rally behind former Gov. Ted Strickland, but young Cincinnati City Councilman P.G. Sittenfeld doesn’t show any signs of getting out of the race anytime soon. The Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report /Roll Call rating of the race is Leans Republican .  

Illinois Senate:  Republican Mark S. Kirk is the most vulnerable senator in the country this cycle. He was narrowly elected in 2010 in a great Republican year, but must run for a second term in a Democratic state in a presidential cycle, when turnout is likely to be more Democratic. Rep. Tammy Duckworth is the likely Democratic nominee, although she is facing a primary. Democrats believe she is just the right candidate to take on Kirk, who is still recovering from a stroke he suffered in 2012. But she is unproven statewide and is relatively untested as a candidate. Kirk probably needs to run a perfect campaign to have a shot at winning, a challenge he may not be able to pull off. The Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report /Roll Call rating of the race is Tossup/Tilts Democratic .  

Indiana Senate Race Is No Longer Safe

Coats would have been a safe bet for re-election, but is retiring. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

GOP Sen. Dan Coats’ retirement creates a takeover opportunity in Indiana next year. But Democrats will likely need some breaks to move the race from a potential gain to a top-tier contest.  

Coats would have started the race as a clear favorite for re-election, but now that he is retiring, his open seat could become competitive. We’re shifting The Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report /Roll Call rating of the Indiana Senate race from Safe Republican to Favored Republican until the candidate fields on start to take shape. The new rating reflects both the state’s fundamental bent and the lack of a proven incumbent.  

First Look: Can Democrats Win the Senate in 2016?

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

For Republicans, the fight for control of the Senate in 2016 is all about playing defense.  

Unlike 2014 (and 2018), the Senate races of 2016 offer few, if any, opportunities for the GOP as the election cycle begins. The map strongly favors Democrats and suggests the possibility of considerable Democratic gains. Republicans hope to recruit strong challengers to Democrats Michael Bennet of Colorado and Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada, but the other eight Democratic senators up next year come from states so reliably Democratic that Republicans don’t have any real hope of making them competitive.  

Race Ratings Changes: House Democrats Decidedly on Defense

The House playing field continues to shift in favor of Republicans as President Barack Obama’s slumping job approval numbers cast a shadow over the landscape and Democrats shift their financial resources from offensive opportunities to defensive positions.  

At the beginning of the cycle, Republicans David Valadao of California, Rodney Davis of Illinois, and Dan Benishek of Michigan were three of the top House Democratic targets anywhere in the country. Now all three are on the fringes of the conversation about competitive races.  

For Some Candidates, Home Is Where the Opportunity Is

McAuliffe won the gubernatorial race on Tuesday in Virginia. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

We all know that candidates and members don’t have to live in a House district in order to run or even represent that area. And I’ve written about a number of top-tier Democratic hopefuls this cycle who don’t live in the district where they are campaigning.

But there is a new category of candidate emerging this cycle: candidates who held office in one state but are running in another.