Sabatos Crystal Ball

Archive for January, 2019

The Seats/Votes Relationship in the U.S. House 1972-2018

With big national win, Democrats in 2018 overcame GOP bias from earlier in decade

, Guest Columnist

Editor’s Note: This is an updated version of a story we previously published in June 2015 and January 2017 looking at the national House vote. KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE — After adjusting the results for uncontested races, Democrats won the national House popular vote by about seven percentage points last fall. — The size of the […]

The Year of the Green Wave

How Democratic House fundraising spiked in 2018

, Guest Columnist

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE — Democratic newcomer candidates spent far more money than in previous cycles, while Republicans’ spending numbers stayed stagnant. — Female candidates enjoyed a cash advantage over male candidates, with an especially large gap among Democrats in open competitive seats. –There has been no observable advantage in the amount of cash […]

How you can help furloughed federal workers

The Center for Politics stands for good politics, but politics has broken down — it isn’t working, and hundreds of thousands of government workers and their families, as well as government contractors and their families, are suffering. The shutdown is the longest in United States history and shows no sign of ending. Through no fault […]

Watch this morning’s American Democracy Conference

The University of Virginia Center for Politics is hosting its 20th annual American Democracy Conference this morning in Charlottesville. A conference livestream is available at: The schedule is as follows: 9 a.m. — Keynote address by former Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D-VA) 10 a.m. — Panel discussion on Donald Trump at the midterm of his […]

2020 Electoral College: Why the Republicans’ magic number is probably 269, not 270

Despite Democratic takeover, Republicans still hold an edge if the House has to pick the president

, Managing Editor, Sabato's Crystal Ball

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE — There is at least one plausible Electoral College scenario that produces a 269-269 tie, which would throw the presidential election to the House of Representatives elected in 2020. — If the House decides the presidency, you might think that Democrats would have the advantage, given their new majority. But […]

Join us for the American Democracy Conference in Charlottesville

Conference will be livestreamed next Thursday

Next Thursday, Jan. 24, the University of Virginia Center for Politics will host its 20th annual American Democracy Conference in Charlottesville. The event will be held at Alumni Hall, 211 Emmet St. South, on the Grounds of the University of Virginia. It is free and open to the public with advanced registration, and members of […]

House 2020: Our initial ratings

Democratic overperformance in 2018 gives the majority party breathing room to start, but a GOP presidential win could put the House in play

, Managing Editor, Sabato's Crystal Ball

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE — Democrats start the cycle favored to hold the House majority, but a GOP presidential victory would open the door to Republicans restoring total control of Washington. — Overall, roughly equal numbers of Democratic (47) and Republican (46) districts begin the cycle listed in our ratings in the Toss-up, Leans, […]

The Wandering Voters

How 2018’s gubernatorial results reflected 2016’s presidential trends

, Guest Columnist

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE — 2018 governors’ races continued along the same realignment patterns that emerged in the 2016 presidential election. — An analysis of protest third-party votes for president in 2016 indicates those voters were likelier to pick the Democrats’ side in the 2018 election. 2016’s changes endured in 2018 gubernatorial races In […]

Tennessee Politics: From Boss Crump to Howard Baker to . . . Marsha Blackburn?

GOP position in Volunteer State strengthening as another open-seat Senate race looms

, Guest Columnist

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE — The nomination of now-Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) for Tennessee’s open-seat Senate race last year represented a rightward shift for state Republicans. — Blackburn’s clear victory over former Gov. Phil Bredesen (D) last year means the GOP is well-positioned to hold another open Senate seat being contested next year. Tennessee’s […]