Barbara Comstock

More GOP women want to run for the House. But why now?
Female Republicans are stepping up to run earlier than last cycle

Republican Tina Ramirez, who has worked in and around Congress for much of her career, is challenging Democratic freshman Abigail Spanberger in Virginia’s 7th District. (Courtesy Tina Ramirez’s campaign)

Stephanie Bice is a Republican from a deeply conservative state that’s only sent three women to Congress. But the election of a record-breaking number of female freshmen to the House in 2018, all but one of them Democrats, helped her decide to run for the chamber herself.

“It was a signal to all women that politics isn’t just … a man’s world,” said the Oklahoma state senator, who recently announced her candidacy for the 5th District. “It shows that women have as much of an ability to win these seats. We just need to field the candidates.”

Could this be the primary where outside GOP groups help women win?
Female Republicans in North Carolina's 3rd District earn endorsements from super PACs

Voters in North Carolina’s 3rd District will pick their party nominees in the special election primary for the the late Rep. Walter B. Jones’ seat. Winners must clear 30 percent of the vote, or the top-two finishers will advance to a July runoff. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Republicans’ biggest problem electing women has been in primaries.

But in the first special election primary of the year, where 17 Republicans are vying next week for the nod in North Carolina’s 3rd District, the two candidates who have attracted the most significant outside support are women.

Initial 2020 House race ratings are here
Republicans are on the offense but also running against history

Reps. Max Rose of New York, second from left, and Joe Cunnigham of South Carolina, second from right, here with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy at the State of the Union, are among 31 Democrats holding seats the president carried in 2016. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

After losing a net of 40 House seats in last year’s midterms, Republicans have plenty of offensive opportunities in 2020. But winning back the majority will not be easy.

On paper, the path back to 218 may look simple for Team GOP because it winds through favorable territory. There are 31 Democrats who currently represent districts that President Donald Trump carried in 2016, and Republicans need to gain 18 or 19 seats to regain House control (depending on the outcome in North Carolina’s 9th District).

Roll Call photographer Tom Williams wins WHNPA’s Political Photo of the Year
Photo editor Bill Clark picks up two more 2019 White House News Photographer Association awards

The above photo, by Roll Call staff photographer Tom Williams, has won WHNPA’s political photo of the year. In the image, Vice President Mike Pence is seen in the Senate Reception Room as Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., right, conducts a meeting on July 10, 2018. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Roll Call staff photographer Tom Williams has won the distinguished Political Photo of the Year award in the White House News Photographers Association’s 2019 Eyes of History contest.

The same photo, featuring Vice President Mike Pence in the Capitol, won first prize in the On Capitol Hill category of the visual awards. 

Democrats identify 44 vulnerable House members to defend in 2020
Almost all the members named to the Democrats’ Frontline Program are freshmen

Virginia Rep. Abigail Spanberger, left, and Michigan Rep. Elissa Slotkin are among the freshmen whom the DCCCC has named to its Frontline program for its most vulnerable incumbents. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Democrats made historic gains in the House last fall, and now they need to defend those seats heading into the 2020 election. 

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Thursday named 44 members to its Frontline Program for its most vulnerable incumbents.

DCCC sets its eyes on Texas suburbs and beyond for 2020
House Democrats unveiled their offensive targets for presidential year

Rep. Kenny Marchant, R-Texas, won re-election to his suburban Dallas seat last fall by just 3 points. He’s on the Democrats’ target list for 2020. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

On the heels of their historic midterm success, the House Democratic campaign arm has identified 32 Republican-held seats it’d like to peel off in 2020. 

Democrats netted 40 seats in the chamber last fall by going after the suburbs and areas of diverse and rapid population growth where President Donald Trump has been unpopular. The party is looking to the next tier of these districts to help them make more gains next year. 

All Is Not Lost for Republicans in the Suburbs
Party can regain its suburban advantage with a clearer economic message

Supporters of Rep. Barbara Comstock, R-Va., cheer during an Independence Day parade in Leesburg, Va., in the suburban 10th District, which flipped to the Democrats this year. Republicans can regain their advantage in the suburbs by refocusing on household economic issues, Winston writes. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

OPINION — Will Ferrell once joked about his all-too-normal, stress-free upbringing: “Maybe that’s where comedy comes from, as some sort of reaction to the safe, boring suburbs.”

Safe? Boring? Not any more, especially not for Republicans this year. It was suburban voters — women and men — who voted Republican in 2010, 2014 and 2016 but leaned Democratic this year who played a major role in Republicans losing the House.

Another End-of-the-Year Winners & Losers Column
From Trump to Beto to the Red Sox, it has been, well, another year

President Donald Trump provided much fodder for Stu Rothenberg's annual end of the year winners and losers column. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

OPINION — Well, it’s time for another of my end-of-the-year winners and losers columns. I’ve titled it “Another End-of-the-Year Winners & Losers Column” just so you don’t miss the point.

As I have often done in the past, I’ll offer up a category with some nominees. Then I’ll give you my winner. If you disagree, please send your complaints to Nathan Gonzales of Inside Elections or Charlie Cook of the Cook Political Report. Just don’t send them to me.

SALT Still Rubs the Democrats’ Tax Wounds
Getting to a unified agenda on taxes won’t be easy for incoming majority

Virginia Democrat Jennifer Wexton criticized the the GOP tax overhaul for capping the SALT deduction used by many residents of her 10th District. But undoing the cap would create new complications for Democrats, Cohn writes. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

ANALYSIS — A strange dilemma for the incoming majority House Democrats is encapsulated in a series of June tweets from Democratic candidate Jennifer Wexton on the six-month anniversary of the Republicans’ signature 2017 tax overhaul.

Rep.-elect Wexton, who ultimately defeated GOP Rep. Barbara Comstock in northern Virginia, wrote in an opening tweet that the bill “hurt working families by giving tax cuts to the wealthiest and blowing up our national debt.” In another, Wexton wrote that the law’s cap on state and local tax deductions “hits #VA10 families hard, yet @RepComstock still voted for the bill.”

Midterms Were a Buffet Election for Democrats, Republicans
Each side can pick what it liked best from the results — and ignore warning signs

Sen.-elect Mike Braun, R-Ind., Sen.-elect Mitt Romney, R-Utah, Sen.-elect Josh Hawley, R-Mo., Sen.-elect Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., Gov. Rick Scott, R-Fla., and Sen.-elect Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., pose for a group photo in McConnell’s office in the Capitol on Wednesday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

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 seeds and plenty of ranch dressing. Essentially, my strategy involved choosing what looked and tasted good and avoiding anything of nutritional value.