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National Politics


Bachmann's Potential Presidential Pathway Not Well-Trodden

Only one sitting member of the U.S. House has been elected president in history (Garfield); only three presidents have been elected with U.S. Representative as the highest elected office attained on their resume

What's in a Name? From Abraham to Zell, 100 Years of U.S. Senators

John, William, and James are the most common of the 313 different first names used by the more than 875 Senators elected or appointed during the last 100 years; trending: Mark and Mike

Which U.S. Senate Seats Have Had the Most Partisan Turnover?

Six seats up for election in 2012 rank in the top 10 for the most frequent change in party control since the introduction of popular vote elections, including Sherrod Brown's (OH), Claire McCaskill's (MO), and Joe Lieberman's (CT)

Michael Steele Seeks to Buck RNC History with Appeal for Second Term

Over 75 percent of RNC Chairmen throughout history have served less than two full terms; 60 percent have served two years or less

Waiting in the Wings: A Historical Survey of Living Ex-Presidents

Barack Obama is the first Democrat since James Buchanan with two living Democratic ex-presidents to advise him

Location of Democratic National Convention Unlikely to Boost 2012 Vote in Host State

Since 1832, Democratic presidential nominees have suffered a 2.4-point average decline in host state's adjusted margin of victory (or loss) vis-à-vis the national vote compared to the previous election cycle

Race, Not Party, Defines Charlie Rangel Censure Vote

Just 25 percent of racial minorities in the U.S. House (and only 1 black) voted for Rangel censure, compared to 92 percent of whites and 87 percent of white Democrats

Media Myth Exposed: Loss of Democratic Governorships Not Key to Obama's 2012 Battleground State Prospects

Since 1968, Democratic presidential candidates have had the same success rate in carrying states with Democratic governors as Republican governors - 33 percent

Are Democrats Becoming a Two-State Party?

Percentage of Democratic U.S. House Seats from California and New York soars to a record high of 28.1 percent after the 2010 elections

Heath Shuler Would Be Greenest (and Youngest) Floor Leader in U.S. House History

If elected, Shuler would become the first majority or minority leader with less than five terms of service in the U.S. House and the first elected below the age of 45

'No' Vote on Health Care May Have Saved Several Democratic House Seats in McCain Districts

House Democrats from McCain districts voting 'no' on health care were reelected at nearly four times the rate as those voting 'yes'

Nancy Pelosi 1 of 8 House Democrats to Win by Bigger Margin in 2010 than 2008

Only 3 percent of 230 Democratic U.S. House incumbents on the ballot increased their margin of victory in 2010 compared to 2008; Nancy Pelosi had the second largest increase

Smart Politics Projections: U.S. House of Representatives

Projected partisan shift: GOP +62

Third Party U.S. House Candidates Spike to Largest Midterm Election Mark Since 1934

With an average of more than one candidate per district, it has been over 75 years since this many independent and third party U.S. House candidates appeared on midterm general election ballots

Female Candidates to Shatter Records Across the Country on Election Day

More than a dozen women will set state records on Tuesday for female gubernatorial and U.S. Senate candidacies

Harry Reid Could Become Just Fifth Senate Party Floor Leader to Lose at the Ballot Box

Death more common than defeat in ending the reign of Senate's majority and minority leaders; over 86 percent have won reelection since 1920

Republicans Positioned to Win Nine Midwestern U.S. Senate Seats for First Time Since 1920

GOP on track to sweep all nine Class III Midwest Senate seats in the 12-state region for the first time in 90 years

Tea Party, The Movie: Panned by Critics, Loved by Audiences

Elite-public gap in evaluation of Tea Party movement as seen through the lens of Hollywood

At the Institute: Washington Update with former Congressman Vin Weber

Former six-term congressman to discuss the current political climate in Washington, the nation's pressing domestic and foreign challenges, and the upcoming midterm elections

Which States Host the Most Competitive Gubernatorial Elections?

New Mexico, Alaska, and Indiana have provided the tightest gubernatorial races in the nation since 1900; over the last three decades: Mississippi, Illinois, and Virginia



Political Crumbs

Mary Burke: English First?

While multiculturalism and bilingualism are increasingly en vogue in some quarters as the world seemingly becomes a smaller place, one very high profile 2014 Democratic candidate does not shy away from the fact that she only speaks one language: English. In an attempt to highlight her private sector credentials working for Trek Bicycle, Wisconsin Democratic gubernatorial nominee Mary Burke boasts on her campaign bio page how she made great strides in international business dealings...while only speaking English: "Despite not speaking a single foreign language, she established sales and distribution operations in seven countries over just three years." Note: According to 2010 Census data, nearly half a million Wisconsinites over five years old speak a language other than English at home, or 8.7 percent, while 4.6 percent of Badger State residents do not speak English at all.


Does My Key Still Work?

Much has been made about Charlie Crist's political transformation from Republican to independent to Democrat en route to winning the Florida GOP and Democratic gubernatorial nominations over a span of eight years. Party-switching aside, Crist is also vying to become just the second Florida governor to serve two interrupted terms. Democrat William Bloxham was the first - serving four year terms from 1881 to 1885 and then 1897 to 1901. Florida did not permit governors serving consecutive terms for most of its 123 years prior to changes made in its 1968 constitution. Since then four have done so: Democrats Reubin Askew, Bob Graham, and Lawton Chiles and Republican Jeb Bush.


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