Alex Roarty

Club for Growth Embraces Trump, For Now
But whether the new president is a friend or foe is still a question mark

The hour was growing late and David McIntosh’s son was frustrated. It was election night, and the dozens of people gathered at the Club for Growth’s downtown Washington office were — to their own surprise — realizing that Donald Trump would win. 

The teenager was puzzled why the TV networks were taking so long to declare Trump the victor.

Democrats, Donors Turn Focus to State Legislative Races
Republicans say their foes have tried before but still came up short

The Senate map is chock-full of deep red states, the House map skews Republican, and the presidential race doesn’t start for at least two more years. 

If Democrats and their donors want to find ways to win in 2018, they might need to refocus down the ballot — way down the ballot.

Is Jeff Flake the GOP Senator Most Vulnerable in a Primary?
Republicans are worried the Arizona senator’s penchant for criticizing Trump has landed him in trouble with GOP voters

Sen. Jeff Flake has vocally criticized his party’s freshly elected president, raised little money, and backed a moderate approach to an immigration overhaul. 

In other words, the first-term senator from Arizona has all but begged a Donald Trump-like Republican to run against him. Now, his friends and allies fear that’s exactly what will happen — with no guarantee that the incumbent lawmaker will win. 

Report: Former Bush Aide Considering Run Against Cruz
Matthew Dowd might launch long-shot bid against Texas senator

Can a former top aide to President George W. Bush run as an independent in Texas, take on Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, and win? 

We might get to find out. 

Trump’s Cabinet Picks Unexpectedly Putting Senate GOP in Bind
President-elect just nominated a potential Republican Senate candidate

Senate Republicans had hoped that Donald Trump’s Cabinet selections could give them a leg up in the 2018 midterm races.

So far, things aren’t going to plan. 

Can Republicans Afford to Oppose Tillerson?
Bucking the president-elect could put the congressional GOP in a tough spot

Congressional Republicans said Tuesday that Donald Trump’s nomination of Rex Tillerson to run the State Department gave them “serious concern,” raised “red flags,” and prompted “many questions which must be answered.” 

But as the Senate GOP considers blocking the Exxon Mobil CEO, it should ask itself: Can it risk open conflict with Trump?

Activists Brace for Fight Over Campaign Finance Law
Some GOP lawmakers have already introduced legislation that would remove the candidate-contribution caps

A newly empowered Republican Party has at least two years in Washington to overhaul everything from the tax code to border security.

Will it also make major changes to campaign finance law?

How Pat Toomey Won
Pennsylvania senator’s road to re-election started long before 2016

Patrick J. Toomey’s re-election campaign started a day after he took office in 2011, almost six years before he would actually face voters. The freshly elected Republican senator met at noon in the bowels of the National Republican Senatorial Committee in Washington, across the street from Union Station, with two of his top political lieutenants.

The trio needed figure out as soon as possible how the Republican could possibly win another statewide election in Pennsylvania.

Rural Democrats: Party Ignored Us, Suffered the Consequences
Strategists say candidates need to emphasize broadband internet for all, consider advertising in rural newspapers, radio

Democrats in rural America have a blunt message for the rest of their party: We saw the electoral disaster coming — and it’s your fault.

Strategists and party officials say their warnings about the party’s lackluster outreach to rural voters went unheeded by Democratic leaders for years, culminating in this month’s shock defeat to Donald Trump. A presidential candidate who actually performed poorly in many cities and suburbs nonetheless scored an upset victory because of a surge in support from small towns and rural areas.

Top Gardner Aide to Become New NRSC Director
Senate GOP has a target-rich map in 2018

Chris Hansen will become the National Republican Senatorial Committee’s new executive director, installing the 34-year-old Republican operative as a key player for the Senate GOP as it tries to expand its expected 52-member majority in 2018. 

Hansen’s move to the group has been rumored for weeks, ever since Sen. Cory Gardner of Colorado became the odds-on favorite to be the NRSC’s chairman. Hansen is Gardner’s chief of staff. 

Senate Democrats’ Challenge in 2018: The White Working Class
Party must defend 10 seats in states that Trump won last week

The only thing standing between Senate Democrats and an electoral wipeout in 2018? Donald Trump’s base.

A party that’s only three seats short of a Senate majority is nonetheless bracing to play defense for the next two years, hoping to hold a daunting 10 seats in states that went red in last week’s presidential race.  

How Johnson Used Data to Pull Off the Upset
Wisconsin GOP senator inherited the system from Gov. Scott Walker

The Wisconsin Senate race was an afterthought in mid-September: Polls showed Republican Sen. Ron Johnson trailing, while both parties scrambled to pour money in states they considered more competitive.

But to top officials in Johnson’s campaign, the middle of September is exactly when they became convinced they would win — thanks in part to a data operation that had a better understanding of the electorate than most.

How Republicans Held the Senate
GOP prepared diligently for Trump, but he turned out to be a much different candidate than expected

Republican and Democratic strategists alike felt the shock set in when they saw the Dane County returns in Wisconsin, the early vote tallies in rural Florida, and the struggles of a Democratic gubernatorial candidate in Indiana who was supposed to run well ahead of the party’s candidate for Senate, Evan Bayh.

The unthinkable was happening: Donald Trump was going to win the presidential race. And with it, he was smashing a year’s worth of strategy in a dozen competitive Senate races.  

Trump Gave Vulnerable GOP Senators an Unexpected Boost
Republicans keep majority in winning some races they had written off

Democrats spent months plotting how they could take back the Senate: Win Pennsylvania, steal an unexpected victory in Missouri, and up the score in blue states like New Hampshire, Wisconsin, and Illinois.

All of their paths to a majority — every one of them — was built on the idea that Hillary Clinton would comfortably win the presidential race. As it turns out, that was a fatal flaw.

Election 2016 Video Blog: Wisconsin Senate Surprise

Get insight into this year's congressional races straight from the Roll Call newsroom as Senior Editor David Hawkings hosts political reporters Alex Roarty and Simone Pathé every hour....
Election 2016 Video Blog: Senate Makeup Taking Shape

Get insight into this year's congressional races straight from the Roll Call newsroom as Senior Editor David Hawkings hosts political reporters Alex Roarty and Simone Pathé every hour....
Election 2016 Video Blog: Indiana Senate Trending Toward Young

Get insight into this year's congressional races straight from the Roll Call newsroom as Senior Editor David Hawkings hosts political reporters Alex Roarty and Simone Pathé every hour....
Election 2016 Video Blog: The 4 Senate Races Democrats Must Win

Election 2016 is here. Get insight into this year's congressional races straight from the Roll Call newsroom as Senior Editor David Hawkings hosts political reporters Alex Roarty and Simone Pathé every hour....
The One Senate Race Democrats Let Get Away
Ted Strickland's failure in Ohio raises questions over whether the party should continue pursuing white working-class voters

CAMBRIDGE, Ohio — Ted Strickland and a lone supporter sat side by side Wednesday morning, six days before the election, getting to know each other.

Darwin Jirles, 73, had come to meet his former governor at a campaign stopover inside Theo’s, an 85-year-old family-style restaurant in this small southeast Ohio town known for its Coney Island hot dogs and homemade pie.

Democrats Pick Up First Seat, but Bayh Loses, Rubio Wins
Republicans say they are surprised things are this competitive given Trump, blue-state heavy map

Update: 8:38 p.m.

The first big result of the night (for Senate races) is in: Evan Bayh has lost his bid in Indiana to return to the Senate.