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The GOP's High Water Mark?

Upper Midwestern Democrats are hoping the large deficits they currently face in state legislatures around the five-state region (IA, MN, ND, SD, WI) do not grow in November's elections. After the 2010 cycle, Republicans enjoyed a 144-88 advantage in state senates across these states (62.1 percent) - their best showing...

Safety First

Although freshman Republican U.S. Representatives Sean Duffy (WI-07) and Reid Ribble (WI-08) are considered vulnerable by many D.C. prognosticators this November, redistricting has not spelled trouble for congressional incumbents in the Badger State over the last six decades. Since 1952, only one of 52 incumbents went down in the general...

Splitting the Electorate

With new polls released this week showing uncertainty at the top of the leader board in the Wisconsin GOP U.S. Senate race, the four-candidate field of Tommy Thompson, Eric Hovde, Mark Neumann, and Jeff Fitzgerald is likely to produce not only a plurality winner next month, but possibly all four...

Climbing the Ladder

When Iowa Republican Chuck Grassley won reelection for a sixth term in November 2010 he and his fellow Iowa U.S. Senator, Democratic Tom Harkin, were 11th on the all-time list for the longest-serving delegation members serving together to the nation's upper legislative chamber. After the first 17+ months of the...

Choices, Choices, Choices

In 2010, a total of 29 candidates ran across Minnesota's eight congressional districts - good for the seventh highest per district average in the history of the state (at 3.63 candidates) across the 78 general cycles dating back to 1857. That number appears to have declined significantly with just 18...

Romney Still Slow off the Blocks

While all eyes were on Wisconsin this week, Mitt Romney turned in more sluggish performances in presidential primaries held on Tuesday. Despite effectively sealing the nomination nearly two months ago, Romney failed to crack the 70 percent mark in two more states: South Dakota (66.0 percent) and Montana (68.4 percent)....

Thaddeus McCotter, Meet Bob Dornan

Michigan Republican Congressman Thaddeus McCotter's filing error, which left him hundreds of valid signatures shy to appear on the Wolverine State's U.S. House primary ballot in August, may spell the end of the five-term congressman's tenure in D.C. If McCotter fails in his recently announced write-in campaign to keep his...

Governor vs. Governor vs. Governor

The last election cycle saw five ex-governors attempt to win back their old jobs, with success stories in California (Jerry Brown), Iowa (Terry Branstad), and Oregon (John Kitzhaber). But in 1904, the State of Wisconsin saw three governors on the general election ballot: two-term Republican incumbent Robert La Follette, former...

A Vote for No One

More than 50,000 North Carolina residents who voted in the Tuesday's Republican presidential primary opted for 'no preference' on their ballot, or 5.2 percent. That marks the second highest percentage of those who have done so in the 40 years of the modern primary era, behind the 9.8 percent who...

Deaths in the Cabinet

It has been 16 years since the last member of a presidential cabinet died in office - the sixth longest stretch in the nation's history. Overall, 15 cabinet members have died in office including three Secretaries of State, two Attorneys General, two Postmasters General, two Secretaries of the Navy, two...

Obama's Home State Muscle

As electoral map gurus put forth their latest projections, here is one tidbit to consider: the major party nominee from the most populous home state has won nearly twice as many presidential elections in U.S. history (32) as the nominee with the smaller home state population (17). (On four occasions...

Now That's a Long Roll Call

With many congressional retirements already announced and more incumbents likely to be unseated this fall, get ready to scratch several dozen new names onto the list of individuals to have served as U.S. Representatives next January. More than 10,700 individuals have served as representatives since 1789, with two states tallying...

Romney Strongest in McCain Country in Wisconsin

Exit polls found Mitt Romney winning over several key demographic groups in his defeat of Rick Santorum in the Wisconsin primary Tuesday, and they can perhaps best be summed up as follows: he dominated in the state's biggest Republican strongholds. John McCain carried 13 of Wisconsin's 72 counties in the...

Will Obama Again Play It Safe with His 2012 Basketball Bracket Picks?

While Barack Obama may be pulling for a Rick Santorum long-shot bid on the Republican side of the presidential ticket, it is unlikely any underdogs will make it on the president's Final Four bracket in the men's college basketball tournament. Obama has played it safe through his first three brackets...

Better to Have Votes Than Friends?

Although he served on Capitol Hill for four years in the U.S. House and 12 years in the U.S. Senate through 2006, Rick Santorum - like his former colleague Newt Gingrich - isn't exactly having a difficult time keeping track of his endorsements from current members of Congress. As of...

Friendly Faces?

In addition to his wife and a few governmental officials, an additional 19 non-governmental guests sat in the First Lady's box during the president's State of the Union address Tuesday evening. Interestingly, 17 of these 19 individuals - some of which were referenced in the president's address - come from...

Romney Support Spikes in Each New Hampshire County from 2008

Mitt Romney's strongest three counties in the 2012 GOP New Hampshire primary were his three strongest in 2008: Rockingham (#1 in both cycles), Carroll (#3 in '08, #2 in '12), and Hillsborough (#2 in '08 and #3 in '12). Rockingham and Hillsborough (both bordering Massachusetts on the south), were the...

Rick Perry Still Making English Teachers Roll Their Eyes

Although he has somewhat slowed down the use of his favorite verbal tics from 10 per debate to four, Texas Governor Rick Perry is still far and away the clubhouse leader in the GOP presidential debates when it comes to using clich├ęs. Through the nine debates since Perry first took...

The Return of the 11th Commandment?

While there certainly have been memorable moments in the last two Republican presidential debates, those who have followed the eight GOP candidates in their nationally televised performances over the last few months may have noticed something was missing: there were only three candidate-on-candidate attacks launched in both the Michigan and...

No Appointment Necessary (in AZ, MD, UT, WI)

Over the last 100 years there have been 189 appointments made to the U.S. Senate to fill vacancies created for a variety of reasons such as retirement, death, or resignations to become president or vice-president. Kentucky leads the way with the most such appointments since the introduction of direct elections...



Political Crumbs

Final Four Has Presidential Approval

By edging Michigan in the final seconds Sunday, the University of Kentucky guaranteed that one school in the Final Four this year would be located in a state that was not carried by President Barack Obama in 2012. (Connecticut, Florida, and Wisconsin had previously earned Final Four slots over the weekend). Across the 76 Final Fours since 1939, an average of 3.1 schools have been located in states won by the president's ticket during the previous election cycle. All four schools have come from states won by the president 29 times, with the most recent being the 2009 Final Four featuring Connecticut, Michigan State, North Carolina, and Villanova. On 30 occasions three Final Four schools have been located in states won by the president, with two schools 11 times and only one school six times (the most recent being 2012 with Kansas, Kentucky, Louisville, and Ohio State). There has never been a Men's NCAA Division I Final Four in which no schools were located in states carried by the president's ticket.


Three for the Road

A new Rasmussen Poll shows Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker in a dead heat with likely 2014 Democratic nominee Mary Burke. Walker is seeking to win his third consecutive election after prevailing in 2012's recall contest. Eight of his predecessors accomplished this feat: Republicans Lucius Fairchild (in 1869), Jeremiah Rusk (1886), Robert La Follette (1904), Emanuel Philipp (1918), John Blaine (1924), Walter Kohler (1954), Warren Knowles (1968), and Tommy Thompson (1994). Three others Badger State governors lost on their third campaign: Democrat George Peck (1894), Progressive Philip La Follette (1938), and Republican Julius Heil (1942). One died in office before having the opportunity to win a third contest (GOPer Walter Goodland in 1947) while another resigned beforehand (Democrat Patrick Lucey in 1977 to become Ambassador to Mexico). Overall Wisconsin gubernatorial incumbents have won 35 of 47 general election contests, or 74.5 percent of the time.


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