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Stuart Rothenberg


Stuart Rothenberg is editor and publisher of the Rothenberg Political Report, a nonpartisan, nonideological political newsletter covering U.S. House, Senate and gubernatorial campaigns. He is also a twice-a-week columnist for Roll Call. His column covers campaigns, elections, presidential politics and current political developments.

He holds a B.A. from Colby College (Waterville, Maine) and a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Connecticut. He has taught at Bucknell University (Lewisburg, Pennsylvania) and at the Catholic University of America (Washington, D.C.).

A frequent soundbite, Stu has appeared on Meet the Press, This Week, Face the Nation, the NewsHour, Nightline and many other television programs. He is often quoted in the nation's major media, and his op-eds have appeared in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal and other newspapers.

Stu served during the 2008 and 2010 election cycles as an analyst for the NewsHour on PBS. During the 2006 cycle, he was a political analyst for CBS News. Prior to that, he was a political analyst for CNN for over a decade, including election nights from 1992 through 2004. He has also done on-air analysis for the Voice of America.

He is married, has two children and lives in Potomac, Md.

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Stories by Stuart Rothenberg:

Not All State Offices Are Political Launching Pads

March 28, 2013

My colleague Nathan Gonzales has written a terrific piece on KentuckySecretaryof State Alison Lundergan Grimes, the young Democrat mentioned as a potential challenger to veteran GOP Sen. Mitch McConnell. He explains her election as Kentucky secretary of state and her family’s connection to the Clintons, among other things.

The Fat Lady Sings on Gun Control, 2013 Edition

March 27, 2013

Whether you are a staunch supporter of the National Rifle Association or an enthusiastic backer of the effort by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and California Sen. Dianne Feinstein for stronger gun control laws, it now should be clear who is winning — indeed, who has won — the latest skirmish in the gun control wars.

About That Terrible GOP Brand ...

March 25, 2013

I certainly agree with pollster Andrew Kohut’s overall assessment of the Republican Party’s image and positioning problems in his March 24 Washington Post piece. I, too, have written about the GOP’s problems.

Mixing Apples and Oranges in West Virginia

March 22, 2013

Hoping to hang on to retiring Sen. Jay Rockefeller’s open seat, Democratic strategists are passing the word that attorney and energy company executive Nick Preservati is looking closely at the 2014 Senate contest in West Virginia.

The GOP: A Party Increasingly at Odds With Itself

March 20, 2013

“I am not a member of anyorganizedparty — I am a Democrat,” humorist Will Rogers said many years ago. But if Rogers were alive today, he’d undoubtedly see his party as a model of organization and unity when compared to the GOP.

History May Tell Us Little About GOP's 2014 Senate Prospects

March 20, 2013

A recent National Journal item caught my attention. Entitled “Expanding the Map,” it began: “When Republicans gloat about the seven Democratic-held, red-state Senate seats up in 2014, Democrats can note that only six of their incumbents have lost since the 1990s.”

Democrats Need to Expand House Playing Field

March 19, 2013

Can Democrats win back the House in 2014? Not unless a strong recruiting cycle and national events give them a big boost. My column in Tuesday’s Roll Call looks at the top Democratic opportunities around the country — district by district — and finds the party well short of the three to four dozen serious targets that it needs. (For Rothenberg Political Report House ratings, click here.)

Rothenberg: Is the House in Play? A District-by-District Assessment

March 18, 2013

Three weeks ago, I discussed whether the House is likely to flip control next year by looking at historical trends and “big picture” questions. Those trends show that the Democrats’ task is a challenging one.

Committee Recruitment, Candidate Programs Are All the Rage

March 15, 2013

My colleague Jessica Taylor notes in a new piece on the Rothenberg Political Report that the House campaign committees are relying more and more on “recruitment programs” and “candidate programs” to woo candidates into races, to make sure that they develop quality campaigns and to generate local and national media attention to enable them to raise money. Her piece, which looks at recent “win-loss” records for the past couple of cycles, is worth reading.

Getting to Know the Massachusetts GOP Senate Hopefuls (VIDEO)

March 12, 2013

Two of the Republican Senate hopefuls in Massachusetts are out with new campaign videos.Do yourself a favor and give them a look.

Monthly Party Fundraising Reports Don’t Tell the Whole Story

March 12, 2013

Every election cycle the party campaign committees, and many in the national media, make a big deal about party fundraising.

Looking to 2016: Is It Still Either Bush or Rubio?

March 11, 2013

As former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush continues to do nothing to end speculation that he might run for president in 2016, his Florida ally, Sen. Marco Rubio, twists in the wind.

Rothenberg: Why I Rate Michigan's Senate Seat As 'Safe' for Democrats

March 11, 2013

Moments after the Rothenberg Political Report reiterated its “Safe” rating of the now open Michigan Senate race, I started hearing complaints. Some of the questions raised were reasonable — so reasonable that I thought I’d use this space to explain why my colleagues and I decided not to move the race immediately to a more competitive category.

Can House Democrats Improve on '12 Recruiting Flops?

March 10, 2013

If Democrats are going to have any chance of netting 17 seats during the 2014 midterms — and taking back control of the House — they are going to have to do a much better job in a handful of districts where their recruiting fell far short in 2012. Here are four districts where they have much room for improvement.

Rothenberg: Governorships a Big Opportunity for Democrats in 2014

March 6, 2013

While the fight for the House of Representatives will take center stage next year, another battle could be almost as important for the two parties: control of a handful of big-state governorships.

Rothenberg: Colbert's Sister an Underdog, but Worth Watching

March 4, 2013

Elizabeth Colbert Busch hopes to win a special election for Congress this year. That’s possible but also unlikely, as it would take something close to a political “perfect storm” for the Democrat to win the reliably Republican House seat in South Carolina.

Rothenberg: Bloomberg's Much Ado About Nothing Much

Feb. 27, 2013

The strategy was pretty clear from the start.

Rothenberg: Can Obama Put the House In Play in 2014?

Feb. 25, 2013

Over the past few weeks, I have heard some people suggest that President Barack Obama’s strategy in pursuing his legislative agenda is more about creating issues for the 2014 midterm elections than about passing legislation.

Rothenberg: Democrats' Economic Narrative Still Trumps GOP's

Feb. 21, 2013

Congressional Republicans figured that after the fiscal cliff, they’d have the advantage talking about the sequester and, down the road, the continued funding of the government.

Rothenberg: In GOP Civil War, No Easy Answers

Feb. 17, 2013

Republicans continue to argue about whether the party needs to take steps to prevent the next Christine O’Donnell, Sharron Angle, Todd Akin and Ken Buck, as well as how it might do so.

Rothenberg: Rubio and Jindal Are Allies Now, Adversaries Maybe Later

Feb. 13, 2013

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal have already been tabbed as among the front-runners for the 2016 GOP presidential nomination. Not surprisingly, the narrative you will hear will present them as adversaries.

Rothenberg: Can Democrats Save Rockefeller's Seat?

Feb. 11, 2013

Oh what a difference one word can make. Take away the “West” from “West Virginia,” and you have a once-red state that surely is now purple, a state carried twice by Barack Obama. But add back the “West” and you have the Mountain State, which has been headed down a different path over the past dozen years from its neighbor to the east.

Rothenberg: Youth Vote Could Seal GOP's Minority Status

Feb. 6, 2013

We may well be at a political tipping point that could mark a dramatic change in American politics.

Rothenberg: Obama Looms Large Over Democrats' 2014 Fight to Retain the Senate

Feb. 4, 2013

The odds are against Senate Democrats this cycle. But, of course, they were against the party two years ago at this time, and Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Executive Director Guy Cecil didn’t merely beat the odds — he slaughtered them.

Rothenberg: Is New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie Overhyped?

Jan. 30, 2013

While this year’s race for governor in Virginia will draw plenty of attention, the 2013 gubernatorial contest in New Jersey looks like a yawner.

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