Poll-Based Election Forecasts Will Always Struggle With Uncertainty

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE -- We have no idea how much uncertainty exists in pre-election polls. That leads to very complex poll-based forecast models. -- The general public lacks the expertise necessary to appropriately interpret win probabilities from those complex models. -- Some research shows that overly certain forecasts...

The Senate: Ranking the Top Dozen Best Targets

Establishment Republicans relieved by Kansas primary result; rating changes in Georgia and Iowa

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE -- National Republicans breathed a sigh of relief on Tuesday night, as Rep. Roger Marshall (R, KS-1) beat 2018 gubernatorial nominee Kris Kobach (R) in the Kansas Senate primary. Practically speaking, the Kansas Senate race went from being a potentially major Democratic offensive target to...

Excluding Undocumented Immigrants from the 2020 U.S. House Apportionment

Which states would lose seats and which states would gain seats?

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE -- President Trump recently indicated that he wants the 2020 census reapportionment of House seats to exclude undocumented immigrants from the calculation. -- If undocumented immigrants are excluded, the 2020 reapportionment calculation will change, including changing the number of House seats allocated to the two...

House Primaries: A Little More Action This Year Than Usual

If only one more incumbent loses, 2020 will match 1980’s high watermark for a non-redistricting year

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE -- As five sitting members of the House have already lost primaries -- and some states have yet to vote -- 2020 could see the most primary losers in a non-redistricting cycle since 1980. -- The circumstances of some of this year’s primary losers are...

House Rating Changes

Eight shifts, almost all benefiting Democrats

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE -- Recently-released fundraising reports indicate a mismatch between the best-funded GOP candidates and the districts in which they are competing. -- At this point, Democrats are more likely to net House seats than Republicans, although we’re still not expecting much net change overall. -- There...

The Future Shape of the Senate

How 2020 sets up 2022 and 2024

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE -- The Constitution divides the Senate into three “classes” that face the voters on six-year cycles. Under today’s political dynamics, the class that faced the voters in 2018 was favorable to the Republicans, while the class that faces the voters in 2020 is favorable to...

The Electoral College: The Fringe of the Map Expands

If Trump’s numbers don’t improve, some surprising states could come into play

Editor's Note: This is the first of two issues of the Crystal Ball this week. We'll be back Thursday with our regularly-scheduled issue. KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE -- President Trump’s position has been perilously weak for a month and a half. -- With Joe Biden’s national lead around eight...

States of Play: Georgia

Once-dominant Democrats need formerly Republican suburbs to come through for them in 2020

Dear Readers: In the next installment of our States of Play series -- in which we'll be taking an in-depth look at the key states that will decide the presidential election -- we look at Georgia, which Democrats are trying to win for the first time since 1992. Crystal Ball...

The Clock’s Ticking for Kanye

And anyone else who wants to make a late entry into the presidential race

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE -- Kanye West tweeted over the weekend that he is running for president. -- He has already missed some state deadlines to file for president as an independent, and other deadlines loom. Presidential filing deadlines loom Rapper Kanye West tweeted the following over the weekend:...

The House: Democratic Murmurings in the Texas Suburbs – and Elsewhere

11 rating changes, most in favor of Democrats

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE -- Joe Biden’s currently strong lead in the presidential race is being felt in the suburbs, which if it lasts could imperil Republicans in some of their formerly dark red turf. -- Texas merits special attention, where as many as 10 Republican-held House seats could...

The Rise of Ranked-Choice Voting

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE -- 2020 has been a banner year for ranked-choice voting. -- Several Democratic primary and caucus contests used the system, which asks voters to rank their choice and forces winners to achieve majority support, albeit through votes from those who did not pick them first...

States of Play: Pennsylvania

Dear Readers: As we’ve stressed throughout this election season, the president isn’t picked by national polling or the popular vote, but rather by the individual states -- successful presidential nominees must cobble together a coalition of at least 270 electoral votes. With that in mind, we’re launching a series called...

UVA Center for Politics Announces 22nd Century Scholars

The University of Virginia Center for Politics in partnership with UVA’s Miller Center, Weldon Cooper Center/Sorensen Institute, and Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy have selected 56 students for the newly-created 22nd Century Scholars scholarship program set to launch next week. The Center for Politics has also announced...