presidential

Where House and Presidential Races Converge

Coffman, R-Colo., faces a tough re-election race in a true presidential swing state. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

It’s going to be hard for most House races to get any attention this year, with a competitive presidential race and the fight for control of the Senate. But a handful of districts have the luxury of not only hosting a competitive House race, but also being swing areas of presidential battleground states.  

In states such as New York, California or Minnesota, House strategists and campaigns are largely on their own to motivate voters and get them to the polls. But in a few districts, House strategists and candidates can focus on persuading voters, since the presidential nominees, national parties and, in some cases, the Senate campaigns will have done the heavy lifting to get out the vote.  

The Case for a Crowded Field to Defeat Trump

It’s too late to defeat Donald Trump, at least in the primaries. It’s too late for Republicans to unify behind a single Trump alternative. Now it’s a group effort to take down the celebrity businessman.  

For the last nine months or so, the talk about the Republican presidential primary was about the GOP’s need to unify behind a single Trump alternative. That seemed like a reasonable scenario for much of the cycle, but it’s probably too late to employ that strategy now.  

Cruz and Kasich Implausible Scenarios Keeping Trump on Top

Even though he's not a factor in the Super Tuesday primaries, Kasich is banking on later ones in his home state of Ohio and in neighboring Ohio and Michigan. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)

The early primaries usually winnow presidential fields because each one tests aspects of a candidacy, and because only victories keep the money flowing.

But while this Republican field has winnowed, it hasn’t shrunk as much as some would like. Part of the answer involves the existence of super PAC money, which allows a handful of contributors to keep a candidacy alive. But maybe even more important this time is the shape of the field and the nature of the front-runner.  

Rubio Gets Donnie; Other New Kids on the Block Might Be Tougher

Wahlberg speaks during a Rubio campaign rally in North Las Vegas on Sunday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio didn’t waste any time rolling out some heavy-hitting endorsements, including former New Kids on the Block star Donnie Wahlberg, after hangin’ tough for a second place showing in South Carolina.  

It’s clear that Walberg believes Rubio has the right stuff to be president, but securing the backing of the other four NKOTB members may not be quite as easy.  

Trump Is More Vulnerable Than You Think

While Trump has a high floor, he also might have a low ceiling. (Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images)

Most in the national news media are talking about how Donald Trump is now the clear Republican frontrunner and will be nearly impossible to stop. They are only partially right.  

Trump, who won South Carolina (and all of its delegates) with a little under one-third of the vote, certainly is the front-runner. He has won two of the first three contests and has a clear lead in delegates. He should do well on March 1, when many Southern states hold their primaries and more than 600 delegates are at stake. By definition, that makes him the front-runner.  

Don’t Call it a Push Poll: Bernie Sanders Campaign Edition

Hillary Clinton speaks at a rally at the Clark County Government Center Amphitheater in Las Vegas on Friday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Arguing about the term “push poll” is a biennial tradition and, thanks to the Bernie Sanders campaign, we get to do it once again.  

On Thursday, ABC News wrote about a recent poll conducted in Nevada by a group that favors former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The headline, “Recording Suggests Hillary Clinton Backers Testing Attack Lines Ahead of Nevada Caucus,” was provocative and the availability of the audio was unusual.  

Obama Learns What You Sow in the Senate, You Reap in the White House

Alito faced a contentious confirmation hearing in 2006. (Scott J. Ferrell/CQ Roll Call file photo)

If elected president, Republican Sens. Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio probably won’t keep much more more than the doorknobs from the current White House. But they could take away one valuable lesson from President Barack Obama: What you sow in the Senate, you’ll reap in the Oval Office.  

Obama has the opportunity to change the direction of the U.S. Supreme Court for a generation by nominating his third associate justice over his eight years in office. But after Justice Antonin Scalia died suddenly, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell quickly declared , “This vacancy should not be filled until we have a new President.”  

Who Will Win S.C. Saturday? Just Look at the Voters

Shadows are reflected on an American flag as people line up at a campaign event in Myrtle Beach, S.C., ahead of Saturday's primary. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

What will South Carolina Republican presidential primary voters do when they go to the polls on Saturday? The best way to approach that question is to compare the Palmetto State’s GOP primary voters to those who turned out this month for the first two Republican contests.  

By most measures, South Carolina Republican voters are likely to look much more like those who participated in Iowa than in New Hampshire.  

Michael Bloomberg’s Road Map to the White House

If the two major parties nominate controversial candidates, there looks to be room for a candidate in the middle like Bloomberg. (Alain Jocard/AFP/Getty Images File Photo)

You are the eighth-richest person in America with a net worth of more than $38 billion, according to Forbes magazine. You served three terms as mayor of New York. You’ve been a Democrat, a Republican and an independent. And you believe that the country has suffered from political polarization and needs a strong president who can get things done and bring the country together.  

You are Michael Bloomberg, and you want to be president. Can you make it happen, even assuming the “best case” scenario of Democrats nominating Vermont Sen. Bernard Sanders and the GOP picking either Donald Trump or Texas Sen. Ted Cruz?  

Trying to Make Sense of the Post-New Hampshire Republican Race

The good news for Trump is that the New Hampshire result isn’t likely to narrow the field all that much and he could continue to benefit from a divided field. ( Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

If there were any doubts that Donald Trump was a serious contender in the Republican presidential race after he arguably under-performed in Iowa, New Hampshire’s results should be a wake-up call.  

While one victory in the Granite State certainly doesn’t guarantee Trump the nomination, his significant margin (nearly 20 percent) isn’t easily dismissed. It’s becoming clear that he has a fairly high floor of support, although he could also have a lower ceiling than many of the other candidates.