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National Politics


Numerology Alert: Will 1/11/11 Be a Notable Day in U.S. History?

Over the last century, U.S. history has only provided a few examples of notable events taking place on eyebrow-raising dates on the calendar.

Republican Female U.S. Representatives Lead Commentary on Giffords Shooting

Nearly 40 percent of female GOP U.S. House members issued early press releases on House websites after the shooting in Arizona, compared to 25 percent of female Democrats, male Republicans, and male Democrats

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



Political Crumbs

73 Months and Counting

January's preliminary Bureau of Labor Statistics numbers show Minnesota's unemployment rate of 3.7 percent was once again lower than Wisconsin's 5.0 percent. That marks the 73rd consecutive month in which Minnesota has boasted a lower jobless rate than its neighbor to the east dating back to January 2009 including each of the last 67 months by at least one point. The Gopher State has now edged Wisconsin in the employment border battle for 204 of the last 216 months dating back to February 1997. Wisconsin only managed a lower unemployment rate than Minnesota for the 12 months of 2008 during this 18-year span.


Two Dakotas, One Voice?

For each of the last 24 presidential elections since 1920, North and South Dakota have voted in unison - casting their ballots for the same nominee. For 21 of these cycles (including each of the last 12 since 1968) Republicans carried the Dakotas with just three cycles going to the Democrats (1932, 1936, and 1964). This streak stands in contrast to the first few decades after statehood when North and South Dakota supported different nominees in four of the first seven cycles. North Dakota narrowly backed Populist James Weaver in 1892 while South Dakota voted for incumbent Republican Benjamin Harrison. In 1896, it was North Dakota backing GOPer William McKinley while South Dakota supported Democrat William Jennings Bryan by less than 200 votes. North Dakota voted Democratic in 1912 and 1916 supporting Woodrow Wilson while South Dakota cast its Electoral College votes for Progressive Teddy Roosevelt and Republican Charles Hughes respectively.


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