Election News

Beto O'Rourke Ends Presidential Bid

November 1, 2019

Former Texas Rep. Beto O'Rourke ended his presidential campaign Friday.  He posted a statement with the announcement. O'Rourke said, in part:

"Though it is difficult to accept, it is clear to me now that this campaign does not have the means to move forward successfully. My service to the country will not be as a candidate or as the nominee. Acknowledging this now is in the best interests of those in the campaign; it is in the best interests of this party as we seek to unify around a nominee; and it is in the best interests of the country."

O'Rourke also sent out a series of tweets about his decision:

O'Rourke became well-known nationally in the 2018 Texas U.S. Senate election; where he was narrowly defeated by incumbent Republican Ted Cruz.  He was unable to transfer that energy to his presidential bid, with his recent national polls averaging 2%, and support in Iowa slipping to less than 1%.

Hill Resigns as of Friday; Update on Four House Vacancies

November 1, 2019

Rep. Katie Hill resigned her seat as of Friday. The House now has 233 Democrats, 197 Republican, one independent and four vacancies. 

The four vacancies will be filled by special election in 2020. Ratings are subject to change. 

CA-25 (Date TBA): As noted above, Democrat Katie Hill resigned November 1.  A possible date for the special primary election is March 3, the same date as the state's scheduled 2020 primary. Assuming that is the case, that date will also see 25th District voters nominating candidates for the November 3 general election on a separate ballot. In both cases, all candidates from all parties will appear together. For the regular primary election, the top-two finishers, regardless of party, will advance to the November election. In the special election, the top-two will advance to a May runoff, unless one candidate gets a majority of the vote on March 3.  Leans Democratic.

MD-7 (April 28, 2020): Democratic Rep. Elijah Cummings died October 17. The April special election date is the same as the state's scheduled 2020 primary election. Safe Democratic.

NY-27 (Date TBA): Republican Rep. Chris Collins resigned October 1, the same day he plead guilty to insider trading charges. Under indictment during the 2018 midterms, Collins was re-elected by less than 1% despite the conservative lean of his district; Donald Trump won here by about 25% in 2016; that margin is a better reflection of how the special election is likely to go. Safe Republican.

WI-7 (May 12, 2020):  Republican Rep. Sean Duffy resigned September 23 to address a family health issue. The special election was originally scheduled for January 27, 2020, but had to be moved to a later date due to a conflict between federal and state election laws. Likely to Safe Republican.

GOP Rep. Greg Walden of Oregon Not Running in 2020

October 28, 2019

Longtime Oregon Rep. Greg Walden said Monday that he will not seek a 12th term in 2020. Walden, the only Republican among his state's congressional delegation, represents a conservative constituency covering the eastern 2/3 of the state.  Oregon's 2nd district is the 6th largest congressional district by land area in the United States, trailing only New Mexico's 2nd in size among states with more than one at-large district.

Walden's 17 point margin of victory in 2018 was the smallest of his career. After winning his first term by about 27 points in 1998, he never had a re-election margin lower than 35 points. Donald Trump won here by about 20 points over Hillary Clinton in 2016, and the district will continue to be rated 'Safe Republican' for 2020.

There are now 26 announced retirements in the U.S. House. 

 

Democratic Rep. Katie Hill Expected to Resign This Week

October 27, 2019

Politico reports that California Democratic Rep. Katie Hill is expected to resign this week. She has been under investigation by the House Ethics Committee over an improper relationship with a member of her staff.  News emerged over the weekend that she gave the staffer the highest "2018 election bonus" of those in her office. This follows earlier news of an affair that predated her time in Congress, although this was not part of the ethics probe.

Hill is in her first term representing California's 25th district, north of Los Angeles. She defeated GOP incumbent Steve Knight by about 9% in 2018, becoming the first Democrat to win an election in the 25th district this decade*.  This was one of 7 districts in the Golden State to flip to the Democrats in that year's midterm elections. 

The district had been rated 'Likely Democrat' for 2020. With this expected resignation, Cook Political is changing that to 'Leans Democrat'. Other forecasters may do that in the days ahead. 

* No Democrat has won in the 25th district since 1990. However, the boundaries were different prior to redistricting after the 2010 Census.

 

 

 

Update on Final Two Democratic Debates of 2019

October 26, 2019

Amy Klobuchar has qualified for the November Democratic debate. Separately, details have been announced for the Party's December debate, the final one of 2019.

5th Debate - November 20 - Atlanta, GA

Sen. Klobuchar of Minnesota received 3% in a national Quinnipiac survey this past Thursday, giving her enough qualifying polls to make the November debate stage. She is the 9th candidate to meet both the polling and fundraising requirements. 

Three additional candidates - all of whom participated in the most recent debate - have met the fundraising requirement, but not the polling one. The deadline is November 13.  

6th Debate - December 19 - Los Angeles, CA

Details have been announced for the final debate of 2019. It will take place on the campus of UCLA and be hosted by Politico and PBS.

The DNC has again tightened the qualifying criteria. Candidates must receive 4% support in four approved national or early voting state polls.  Alternately, they can receive 6% in two approved early state polls. This is up from 3% and 5%, respectively. On the fundraising side, candidates must have contributions from 200,000 unique donors, up from 165,000. There's also a minimum of 800 donors from 20 states or more, up from 600.

At this point, Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders have qualified, with Pete Buttigieg and Kamala Harris likely to cross the threshold shortly. Candidates will have until December 12 to qualify.

U.S. House Vacancy and Retirement Update

October 21, 2019

Democratic Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland (MD-7) died October 17.  His passing brings to 3 the number of vacancies in the U.S. House.  The other two openings were held by Republicans. Chris Collins (NY-27) resigned earlier this month, while Sean Duffy (WI-7) resigned in September. 

Democrats control the chamber 234-197, with one independent.

All three seats will be filled by special election. The Wisconsin one will be on May 12, 2020, the other two are not yet scheduled. All three seats are likely to be retained by the incumbent party. 

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On Saturday, Rep. Francis Rooney of Florida announced he would not seek a third term in 2020.  Rooney had said on Friday that he couldn't rule out supporting the impeachment of President Trump without knowing all the facts. 

This brings to 24 the number of current U.S. House.  18 are Republicans, 6 are Democrats.  Of those, 7 are from seats that are likely to be competitive next year.  6 of those are in GOP hands, with one held by a Democratic incumbent.

National, Early State Polling Averages as of 4th Democratic Debate

October 15, 2019

Tuesday's debate, in Westerville, Ohio, will feature 12 candidates. It will be broadcast from 8:00 PM to 11:00 PM ET on several CNN networks as well as online at nytimes.com and cnn.com.  No opening statements. Candidates will have 75 seconds to answer questions and 45 seconds for rebuttals.

Here's the stage, from left to right:

Polling Update

The table below shows select current 270toWin Polling Averages for each candidate in Tuesday's debate, as well as for the candidates that did not qualify. Included is the national average, as well as in each of the four early primary and caucus states.

Candidates in blue or red text will appear in Tuesday's debate; the eight in blue text have already met the qualifying criteria for the next debate, scheduled for November 20.

Visit our Democratic Primary page for calendar and polling information for all 50 states. 

Louisiana Gubernatorial Race Moves to Runoff Election

October 13, 2019

Louisiana will have a gubernatorial runoff election on November 16, after Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards failed to win a majority of the vote in Saturday's all-party primary. Edwards will meet Republican businessman Eddie Rispone, who edged Rep. Ralph Abraham.

Although the 50 U.S. governorships are currently pretty evenly split (27 R, 23 D), Edwards is one of the only Democrats holding the office in the South. That position is a bit more precarious heading into the November runoff, as the two primary GOP challengers combined for about 51% of the vote. Sabato's Crystal Ball has moved the race from Leans Democratic to Toss Up. 

Election for Governor of Louisiana: Overview and Results

October 12, 2019

Looking for the November 16 runoff?   Go here for an overview and live results.

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The content below relates to the October 12 primary. Use the link above the == for the November 16 runoff.


Democrat John Bel Edwards is attempting to win a 2nd term as Governor of Louisiana as voters cast their ballots on Saturday.  Polls close at 8:00 PM Central Time (9:00 PM Eastern). Follow along below as the results come in.

Aside from the presidential election, Louisiana doesn't hold traditional primaries for Federal and state offices. All candidates will appear on a single ballot in Saturday's election. If one candidate receives a majority of the vote, they are the winner. If not, the top two finishers, even if from the same party, move on to the general election on November 16.

What to Expect

We're watching two things.  Will Edwards get a majority of the vote? If not, which Republican will place 2nd and take him on in November? 

Recent polling shows the incumbent governor well ahead, but just short of the 50% threshold. Two Republicans, Ralph Abraham and Eddie Rispone, are set to split most of the rest of the vote, and are in a statistical tie for 2nd.

Other Gubernatorial Elections

In addition to Louisiana, Kentucky and Mississippi will hold gubernatorial contests this year, both on November 5. Those other states both have Republican incumbents. The election in Kentucky is seen as a toss up; unpopular Gov. Matt Bevin is seeking a 2nd term. In Mississippi, Gov. Phil Bryant is termed out.  Both parties have strong nominees, but the deep red lean of the state means the GOP is favored to hold the seat.  Next year, 11 more states will hold gubernatorial elections.  Create and share your forecast with the Governor Interactive Map.

 

Dates Announced for General Election Presidential Debates

October 11, 2019

The nonpartisan Commission on Presidential Debates has announced the schedule for the 2020 general election.  There will be three presidential debates and one vice-presidential debate.  Each will begin at 9:00 PM ET and run for 90 minutes, with no commercial interruptions. 

This is the same number of debates that were held in advance of the 2016 presidential election.  However, each 2020 debate is more than a week closer to Election Day than the corresponding one in 2016. This is partially due to a later calendar date, as well as the fact that the 2020 election is five days earlier (November 3 vs. November 8) than in 2016.  For example, the final debate in 2016, on October 19, was 20 days before the November 8 election. In 2020, the final debate will be October 22, just 12 days in advance of the November 3 election.