Sabatos Crystal Ball

Archive for the ‘Rating Change’ Category

Final picks for 2018

Democrats in House; Republicans in Senate; Democrats big in gubernatorial races; be on guard for upsets

, Sabato's Crystal Ball

  KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE — Sorry, friends, but you are going to have to actually read this one. — Our full list of ratings changes is available here. Our best guesses for Tuesday The 2018 midterm has long been a study in contradictory signs. There is, for Republicans, the benefit of running at […]

The Drive for 25: An updated seat-by-seat analysis of the House

Democrats closing in on majority but it's not a sure thing

, Managing Editor, Sabato's Crystal Ball

  KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE — A race-by-race analysis of Democratic House targets shows the party is close to winning the majority, but they do not have it put away, in our judgment, with Election Day less than three weeks away. — Barring a big, positive late change in the political environment in favor […]

Midterm Update: North Dakota goes to Leans Republican, giving the Republicans a clearer edge in the Senate

Dark red states going different directions in gubernatorial contests

, Managing Editor, Sabato's Crystal Ball

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE — The North Dakota Senate race moves from Toss-up to Leans Republican, reinforcing what we’ve long described as a GOP edge in the race for the Senate. — The Democrats do have a path to the majority, but that path almost certainly involves winning at least one race we currently […]

Ratings Changes: House, Senate, and Governor

Democrats inching closer to magic number in House, poised to net several governorships; Senate battle murky as Kavanaugh effect uncertain

, Managing Editor, Sabato's Crystal Ball

  Editor’s Note: Before we begin this week, we just wanted to acknowledge our friend Geoffrey Skelley, our long-time Crystal Ball associate editor. Geoff started a new position this week with FiveThirtyEight. For nearly seven years, Geoffrey was an exceptionally valuable member of our team, and we will miss him tremendously. However, we are also […]

The House Tilts Toward the Democrats

Big-picture factors help minority party, but battle far from over; 17 ratings changes in favor of Democrats

, Managing Editor, Sabato's Crystal Ball

Editor’s Note: This is a special Tuesday edition of the Crystal Ball. We’ll be back to our regular Thursday schedule next week. KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE — Democrats are now a little better than 50-50 to win the House. This is the first time this cycle we’ve gone beyond 50-50 odds on a House […]

A half-dozen House ratings changes in favor of Democrats

And the fall of Joe Crowley in New York

, Managing Editor, Sabato's Crystal Ball

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE — Rep. Joe Crowley’s (D, NY-14) primary loss represents a changing of the guard in a diverse district. It does not necessarily suggest we should expect a flood of additional Democratic primary losers. As it stands, only three incumbent House members have lost renomination so far this cycle (Crowley, plus […]


FBI director throws a curveball into the presidential race with a week to go; Clinton slips in ratings but retains clear edge

, UVA Center for Politics

The purest version of the “October surprise” is a political bombshell that no one sees coming. In the closing days of the craziest campaign in modern history, we have just been witnesses to an October surprise so pure it would qualify for an Ivory Soap commercial (“99 and 44/100 percent pure”). When FBI Director James […]


Or is it a Clinton Fallback?

, Sabato's Crystal Ball

And then, everything changed. Well, not everything, but enough to generate the first major revision in our electoral map, and all of it is in Donald Trump’s direction for now. Let us make our view perfectly clear: We still believe that Hillary Clinton is more likely than Trump to win the election, and she still […]

The down-ballot outlook as 2016 approaches

Full Senate, House, and gubernatorial updates and ratings changes

, Managing Editor, Sabato's Crystal Ball

The upcoming battle for the Senate depends to a large extent on the presidential race; Democrats should gain House seats but not truly threaten the GOP’s big lower chamber majority; and Republicans are positioned to add to their already-substantial majority of governorships. That’s the early line on next year’s down-ballot contests as we prepare to […]

Ratings Changes: A Senate Sleeper in Kentucky?

Plus, Democrats get some improved odds in a handful of House races

, Managing Editor, Sabato's Crystal Ball

The prospect of Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) winning the Republican presidential nomination seems as remote as ever. But that doesn’t mean Senate Republicans can just assume the seat will stay safely in their column next year. The Senate situation in the Bluegrass State highlights six Crystal Ball race ratings changes, which are shown in Table […]

Notes on the State of Politics

, Managing Editor, Sabato's Crystal Ball

How the North Dakota gubernatorial race could decide the Senate The decision by Gov. Jack Dalrymple (R-ND) to not run for another term potentially puts a 2016 gubernatorial race in play for Democrats. But winning it might involve a trade-off that most Democrats wouldn’t make: the governorship of one of the nation’s least populous states […]

A Small Senate Battlefield

Control of upper chamber likely to come down to about a quarter of 2016’s races

, Sabato's Crystal Ball

Since we last took a comprehensive look at the 2016 Senate races, a slew of new candidates have jumped in, some promising contenders have dropped out, and intraparty competition has intensified. Sounds dramatic. Yet what most strikes us is the overall stability, thus far at least, of the Senate picture. First, Democrats have a plausible […]

House 2016: Gridlock ahead for a possible Clinton administration?

She would likely be first Democratic president to never hold the House

, Managing Editor, Sabato's Crystal Ball

If Hillary Clinton wins the White House, there’s a decent chance that she will achieve a historic first, but not the one everybody talks about. Clinton could become the first Democratic president in the party’s nearly two century-long history* to never control the House of Representatives while she’s in office. That’s not a firm prediction, […]

Senate 2016: Sorting out the Democrats’ best targets

Johnson falls, Toomey rises, in our latest ratings

, Managing Editor, Sabato's Crystal Ball

Former Sen. Russ Feingold’s (D) long-expected decision to challenge Sen. Ron Johnson (R) in a 2016 rematch crystallized for us that Johnson is the most vulnerable incumbent senator in the country. But it also helped put the other top Senate races into context. First of all, let’s re-set the scene. Map 1 shows Senate Class […]

Governors 2015-2016: Republicans lose edge in Kentucky

Intra-party divisions causing early problems for GOP in red states

, Managing Editor, Sabato's Crystal Ball

The potential for Republicans to build on their already-gaudy collection of state governorships — they hold 31 of 50 — was rooted in their red state opportunities among the 15 states being contested this year and next year. Democrats are defending open seats in Kentucky this year, and Missouri and West Virginia next year. These […]