Three Things to Watch in Tuesday’s Alabama Senate Race

Why Wait Until 2018? There Are 3 Special Elections to Watch This Year

What If Paul Ryan Had Run?

Ryan Portrait

Most of these party stalwarts would have been better off forgoing a run in the first place. After all, it’s a decision that’s worked out well for one prominent Republican leader: Paul D. Ryan.  

It gets lost now after all the debates, early balloting and Trump-authored tweets that the speaker of the House once seriously considered a run for president.  In January of last year, he quietly announced that he would not seek the Republican nomination.  

Reid: 'Did You See Diversity in Iowa?'

Reid bemoans the lack of diversity in early contests. (Photo By Bill Clark/Roll Call)

A day after the Iowa caucuses and a week from the New Hampshire primary, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid is back blasting the lack of diversity in the states that come before his home of Nevada in the presidential nominating process.  

Asked about the outcome in Iowa, where Sen. Bernard Sanders, I-Vt., finishing very narrowly behind former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Reid highlighted his role in changing the process to put more focus on the subsequent contests in states with more diverse Democratic electorates. His efforts helped move Nevada's Democratic caucuses earlier in the electoral calendar.  

Vitter Won't Seek Re-Election After Louisiana Governor's Loss

Vitter thanks supporters during his election night watch party in Kenner, La., on Saturday. (Max Becherer/AP Photo)

Republican Sen. David Vitter said he will not seek re-election next year after his stunning loss to Democrat John Bel Edwards in the Louisiana governor's race.

"I came up short tonight," he told supporters at his election night watch party in Kenner, La.

Obama Focus on Gun Control Could Help Sway Independents in 2016

Obama says gun control will be the focus of his final year in office. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Democratic strategists say President Barack Obama's pledge to fight for gun control in his last year in office is unlikely to make it No. 1 on voters' minds in 2016.  

But it could help Senate candidates in battleground states target both base and independent voters, who polling shows overwhelmingly favor expanded background checks.  

Artur Davis Goes to Court to Get Back Into Democratic Party

Former Democratic Congressman Davis speaks at the 2012 Republican National Convention at the Tampa Bay Times Forum. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Should a desperation move to crowbar his way into local politics fail next week, former Rep. Artur Davis may attempt to drag Democrat leaders before the state Supreme Court.  

“If I’m successful, we’ll be taking our case to voters in District 1,” Davis told the Montgomery Advertiser . “If I’m not successful, there’s another court down the street I’d be willing to talk to, the Alabama Supreme Court. If I’m unsuccessful in the judicial process, then I’m unsuccessful.”  

McConnell on GOP Gains in Kentucky: Thanks, Obama

McConnell said Kentucky's 2015 races were a referendum on Obamacare. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Democrats might disagree, but Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell thinks the GOP electoral wave in his home state Tuesday was about President Barack Obama.  

The Kentucky Republican told CQ Roll Call that he viewed the election returns Tuesday in his home commonwealth as a strike against the Obama administration's agenda — particularly the Affordable Care Act.  

When All Politics Is Really Local

Simmons is back in local government. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sometimes life after Congress means retiring to a life of consulting, but sometimes it means you end up back in local government.  

The town hall in Stonington, Conn., is in no way as ornate as the U.S. Capitol, but the newly elected first selectman is a former member of the House.  

What to Watch for on Election Day

Bevin, left, who ran an unsuccessful GOP Senate primary in Kentucky in 2014, is trailing in the Bluegrass State gubernatorial contest. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Voters in a handful of states across the country head to the polls Tuesday for a slate of elections that political handicappers use as an off-year election bellwether of what might happen in 2016.  

And while no federal offices are on the table, results from these states will have implications for House and Senate contests in 2016.