Leonard Lance

SALT Still Rubs the Democrats’ Tax Wounds
Getting to a unified agenda on taxes won’t be easy for incoming majority

Virginia Democrat Jennifer Wexton criticized the the GOP tax overhaul for capping the SALT deduction used by many residents of her 10th District. But undoing the cap would create new complications for Democrats, Cohn writes. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

ANALYSIS — A strange dilemma for the incoming majority House Democrats is encapsulated in a series of June tweets from Democratic candidate Jennifer Wexton on the six-month anniversary of the Republicans’ signature 2017 tax overhaul.

Rep.-elect Wexton, who ultimately defeated GOP Rep. Barbara Comstock in northern Virginia, wrote in an opening tweet that the bill “hurt working families by giving tax cuts to the wealthiest and blowing up our national debt.” In another, Wexton wrote that the law’s cap on state and local tax deductions “hits #VA10 families hard, yet @RepComstock still voted for the bill.”

Democrats Go Into 2019 With Ethics Blazing
Pelosi, Sarbanes tease dark money overhaul as the party’s grand opening salvo

Campaign finance is high on Democrats’ agenda. Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi rolled out some details last week. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

A collection of House Democrats is working behind the scenes to tee up the party’s first order of business in the new Congress: a big overhaul of campaign finance, voting and ethics laws.

Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California and Maryland Rep. John Sarbanes offered a sneak peak Friday of what will likely be christened HR 1 in the 116th Congress. Instead of starting from scratch, the bill will draw from numerous existing proposals — including some that have languished for years during GOP control.

The Midterms' Most Memorable Moments
Political Theater, Episode 44

Constituents show their disagreement as Rep. Leonard Lance, R-N.J., answers a question during his town hall meeting at the Raritan Valley Community College in Branchburg, N.J., on Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2017. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Every campaign season is defined by moments when the big picture starts to come into focus. A parade outside Kansas City where Republican Rep. Kevin Yoder is confronted about gun violence. A pizza parlor in New Jersey becomes an overflow town hall. Roll Call politics reporters Simone Pathé and Bridget Bowman and elections analyst Nathan Gonzales discuss such moments during the 2018 midterms, as well as how to address the dreaded election hangover we’re all suffering.

 

Two Electorates, Two Outcomes
Consensus, bipartisanship could be in short supply

The 2018 midterm showed the divided electorate with its divided outcome. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

It’s rare that both parties can celebrate after an election, but that’s exactly the situation after Republicans gained a handful of Senate seats and Democrats picked up around 30 House seats Tuesday night.

Conservatives, white men (particularly those without a college degree) and pro-Trump voters backed GOP nominees, while women (particularly those with a college degree), minorities and younger voters lined up overwhelmingly behind the Democrats.

The Candidates Mattered. But Opinions About Trump Mattered More
Different outcomes in the House and Senate mostly about the president

Democratic Sens. Heidi Heitkamp and Joe Donnelly both lost their bids for second terms Tuesday night. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Both parties had something to celebrate after Tuesday’s midterm elections, depending on where they looked. But that split outcome — with Democrats winning the House, and Republicans gaining seats in the Senate — underscores the extent to which opinions about President Donald Trump shape today’s politics.

Republicans largely prevailed at the Senate level because they were running in red states where President Donald Trump performed well in 2016. The House saw the opposite outcome, but the reason was the same. Republicans largely struggled because they were running in places where Trump was unpopular.

A Poor Election Night for Republicans in Clinton Districts
GOP-held seats that Clinton won in 2016 mostly swung to the Democrats this year

Rep. Barbara Comstock, R-Va., represented a district Hillary Clinton won by 10 points in 2016. She lost her bid for a third term Tuesday night to Democrat Jennifer Wexton. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Updated Wednesday, 3:06 p.m. | Democrats have won a House majority, boosted by several key pickups of Republican-held districts that backed Hillary Clinton two years ago. 

The party needed a net of 23 seats to take over the chamber. 

He Could Be the Last Republican Standing in New Jersey
With 4 of 5 GOP-held N.J. seats in play, Chris Smith might be the lone survivor

Rep. Christopher H. Smith is the only New Jersey Republican lawmaker not facing a competitive re-election this year. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Ah, New Jersey, the land of malls, diners, Bruce Springsteen … and the endangered Republican. Just how endangered? Well, right now the state’s House delegation has seven Democrats and five Republicans but if the political winds blow just right, the latter number could dwindle to one.

The Garden State is playing host to four competitive races this year — all for GOP-held seats — according to Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales. Democrats are favored to pick up two open seats — Rep. Frank A. LoBiondo’s 2nd District in South Jersey and Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen’s northern suburban 11th District. 

He Helped Write the GOP’s Health Care Bill. Now It’s Catching Up With Him
Pre-existing ire comes for Republican Tom MacArthur in New Jersey

New Jersey Republican Rep. Tom MacArthur’s bid for a third term is now rated Tilts Democratic by Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

WILLINGBORO, N.J. — A year and a half ago, people worried about family members with pre-existing health conditions screamed at Rep. Tom MacArthur at a town hall here

The New Jersey Republican didn’t just vote for his party’s health care plan, which had passed the House the week before. He was one of its authors.

Explosive Rhetoric Ramping Up, But Do Voters Care?
Political Theater Podcast, Episode 42

The recent bomb threats against prominent public figures are just one example of the escalating rhetoric in the political arena. But what effect does it have on voters? (CQ Roll Call file photo)

Praising violence against reporters. Sending pipe bombs to public figures. Threatening political opponents. The fiery rhetoric is in full swing as the nation enters the homestretch of the 2018 midterm election. Is any of it changing voters’ attitudes or behavior? Roll Call Senior Political Writer Simone Pathé and Inside Elections Editor Nathan Gonzales discuss the effect of all the bad vibes on the electorate. 

2 Weeks Out From Election Day, Roll Call’s Guide to the Midterms
Keeping up with the most competitive races and latest outlook for control of Congress

Supporters of Nevada Democratic Senate nominee Jacky Rosen wave signs Friday outside KLASA-TV in Las Vegas before the debate between Rosen and GOP Sen. Dean Heller. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

It’s two weeks until Election Day, and with some parts of the country already engaged in early voting, Roll Call’s coverage of the midterms showcases reporting on the ground in battleground states, the latest political handicapping from our election and political analysts, and a rundown of the most competitive House and Senate races. 

Here’re a few helpful links to race ratings, analysis, stories from the campaign trail, a predict-the-midterms contest and more. We’ll add more as Election Day draws near.