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National Politics


Obama Has Mentioned Terrorism Nearly 1,500 Times as President

Although accused by some of being too gun-shy in using the term, the president has mentioned terrorism (and terror-derived words) an average of one time per day while in office.

When Will Obama Stop Using the Term "Illegal Immigrant?"

The Associated Press has now officially dropped the term, but the President has mentioned "illegal immigrants" 28 times since taking office, including as recently as two months ago.

Who's #1 (Part II)? The Media's 2016 Democratic Field

Hillary and Joe are ranked 1-2 in eight of 11 outlets under analysis with Andrew Cuomo solidly in third.

Who's #1? The Media's 2016 Republican Field

Twenty-three GOPers have been listed as 2016 contenders across a dozen media outlets; only two candidates appear on all 12 lists (Rubio and Christie).

And the Most Notable First Lady Is...Laura Bush?

Laura Bush receives a 29 percent longer write-up than any other First Lady on the White House website's official bio pages.

Clockwatchers: Capitol Hill Republicans Showcase 'Debt Clocks' on Websites

Twenty percent of Republicans on the Hill incorporate "debt clocks" on their official congressional websites, compared to just one Democrat; GOPers also feature clocks related to the Keystone Pipeline, gas prices, and Raúl Castro.

Will Obama Become the Next William Howard Taft?

Did the president hint at his potential career ambition of becoming a Supreme Court justice during a recent news conference?

Republican Women in US House Record Lowest Conservative Voting Scores Since 2005

The two-dozen female House GOPers in 2012 tally an average conservative composite score of 72.5 in National Journal's annual rankings, falling two years in a row after peaking in 2010.

Mounting US Senate Retirements: Tired of DC or Just Plain Tired?

The five U.S. Senators who have announced their retirement during the 113th Congress are 10 years older on average than any 'retiring class' from the chamber over the last five decades.

The Death of Presidents: Beware of June and July

More than one-third of deceased U.S. presidents died in June or July; none passed away in May.

19 Candidates Definitely Running for President in 2016

Fifteen men and four women have already filed their Statement of Candidacy with the FEC - some 3 years, 8 months, and 25 days out from Election Day.

'Get It Done': Slogans Drop Obama's SOTU Address to 9th Grade Reading Level

All four of the president's State of the Union addresses rank in the Bottom 10 in presidential history for Flesch-Kincaid grade level readability scores.

The 6 Times President Obama Mentioned the Pope

What do Dave Brubeck, Lech Walesa, the Queen of England and Nelson Mandela have in common?

America Held Hostage: The Political Rhetoric of Barack Obama

Immigration. Unemployment benefits. Health care. Taxes. Obama has dusted off and stretched the 'hostage metaphor' to advance his policy agenda more than any president in history.

Duckworth, Castro Lead House Freshman Class in Early Media Buzz

While most new U.S. Representatives have lain low during their first month in office, a half-dozen freshmen have received more than half the media coverage of their entire class.

Western Women: Regional Gender Disparities in Congressional Representation

Women have been elected to the U.S. House from western states at 2.5 times the rate as the rest of the country over the last century, with the region electing nearly 1/3 of all female-held seats with just 1/7 of all House seats.

The Birth States of U.S. Representatives (113th Congress)

Eight U.S. House delegations boast an all homegrown membership, led by Iowa and Mississippi; five delegations come in at 25 percent or less including Virginia and Minnesota.

FOX Still Shunned at Obama Press Conferences

The favorite news outlet of conservatives ranks just ninth in presser questions in Obama's first term, getting to ask questions at only half the rate of the Big 3 broadcast networks.

The Literary Namesakes of US Congressmen

One of your ancestors might have been represented by James Joyce, John Milton, Thomas Eliot, or John Dryden on Capitol Hill.

The Top Five Smart Politics Reports of 2012

A look back at a few of the most illuminating, odd, and controversial reports published by Smart Politics this year.



Political Crumbs

No 100-Year Curse for Roberts

Defeating his Tea Party primary challenger Milton Wolf with just 48.1 percent of the vote, Pat Roberts narrowly escaped becoming the first elected U.S. Senator from Kansas to lose a renomination bid in 100 years. The last - and so far only - elected U.S. Senator to lose a Kansas primary was one-term Republican Joseph Bristow in 1914. Bristow was defeated by former U.S. Senator Charles Curtis who went on to win three terms before becoming Herbert Hoover's running mate in 1928. Only one other U.S. Senator from the Sunflower State has lost a primary since the passage of the 17th Amendment: Sheila Frahm in 1996. Frahm was appointed to fill Bob Dole's seat earlier that year and finished 13.2 points behind Sam Brownback in the three-candidate primary field. Overall, incumbent senators from Kansas have won 29 times against two defeats in the direct vote era. (Curtis also lost a primary in 1912 to Walter Stubbs, one year before the nation moved to direct elections).


The Second Time Around

Former Republican Congressman Bob Beauprez became the seventh major party or second place gubernatorial candidate in Colorado to get a second chance at the office when he narrowly won his party's nomination last month. Two of the previous six candidates were successful. Democrat Alva Adams lost his first gubernatorial bid to Benjamin Eaton in 1884, but was victorious two years later against William Meyer. Democrat Charles Johnson placed third in 1894 behind Republican Albert McIntyre and Populist incumbent Governor David Waite but returned as the Fusion (Democrat/Populist) nominee in 1898 and defeated GOPer Henry Wolcott. Gubernatorial candidates who received a second chance but lost both general elections include Democrat Thomas Patterson (1888, 1914), Progressive Edward Costigan (1912, 1914), Republican Donald Brotzman (1954, 1956), and Republican David Strickland (1978, 1986).


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