Freshman Class Filled With Losers

Nathan L. Gonzales November 25, 2014 · 11:06 AM EDT

Congress is filled with a bunch of losers, but not exactly in the way you’re thinking.

In the wake of the elections, it’s easy to second-guess losing candidates and their campaigns, and to discount their chances of ever winning a seat in Congress. But at least 27 incoming House members have electoral losses on their records — more than 40 percent of the new class — and many of them lost contests for the same seat they will represent in the 114th Congress.

When handicapping future success, the circumstances surrounding each loss and the fresh dynamics of the new race are often more important than the loss itself. In some cases, incumbents retire or the political environment changes to boost a previous loser to victory. Or a candidate moves on to bolster their résumé and returns to the campaign trail with more success.

Here are 27 losers coming into the next Congress:

The 2014 Elections: How’d We Do?

Subscriber
November 21, 2014 · 3:31 PM EDT

It seems like historic elections are the norm lately. As many Americans continue to feel uncertain about the economy and jaded about politicians, the electoral environment continues to be volatile. In this month’s midterm elections, much of the frustration was taken out on President Barack Obama…

Louisiana Races Go Into Overtime

Subscriber
Nathan L. Gonzales November 21, 2014 · 3:30 PM EDT

Not so long ago, it looked as if the entire political world would descend on Louisiana for the state’s December 6 runoff because the Senate majority hinged on the outcome of that contest. But that scenario was washed away by strong Republican gains earlier this month. Still, the trio of runoff…

Some Lessons for Democratic Strategists and Other Observers

Stuart Rothenberg November 19, 2014 · 1:38 PM EDT

You could feel it from Day One of this cycle. Senate Democratic strategists knew they were smarter than their Republican adversaries. They’d out-think them and out-work them.

Incumbent Democratic senators who run good campaigns rarely lose, I was reminded. Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet, who had…

The Stunningly Static White Evangelical Vote

Nathan L. Gonzales November 18, 2014 · 11:04 AM EDT

There’s plenty of discussion about the difference between midterm and presidential electorates, but there is one emerging constant: the white evangelical vote.

At least one interest group, Ralph Reed’s Faith & Freedom Coalition, claimed that conservative Christians played a “decisive role” in…