David Wasserman

Senior Editor & Elections Analyst
View articles written by David Wasserman

David Wasserman is Senior Editor & Elections Analyst for The Cook Political Report with Amy Walter. Recognized as one of the nation's top election forecasters, David leads the development of key data visualizations and new product development, and manages CPR’s coverage of the US House of Representatives and redistricting developments. Founded in 1984, The Cook Political Report provides analyses of Presidential, U.S. Senate, House and gubernatorial races. The New York Times has called the Report "a newsletter both parties regard as authoritative."

Legendary forecaster Nate Silver has written: "Wasserman's knowledge of the nooks and crannies of political geography can make him seem like a local," and the Los Angeles Times has called David a "whip smart" and "scrupulously nonpartisan" analyst whose "numbers nerd-dom was foretold at a young age."

In 2016, David drew praise for his accurate pre-election analysis, including his piece "How Trump Could Win the White House While Losing the Popular Vote," written two months before Election Day. Chuck Todd, host of NBC's Meet the Press, recently called David "pretty much the only person you need to follow on Election Night."

David is a contributor to NBC News and his election commentary has been cited in numerous top publications including Politico, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, and RealClearPolitics. He has served as an analyst for the NBC News Election Night Decision Desk since 2008, and has appeared on C-SPAN, CNN, Fox News and NPR.

David has been the lead author of the Cook Partisan Voting Index (Cook PVI) since 2009, developed the widely cited Popular Vote Tracker, and helped to build the 2021-2022 Redistricting Hub for the Cook Political Report website, which featured possible congressional district maps (hand drawn by David), for every state. In 2023, David led the release of the historical Cook PVI values for every set of congressional districts dating back to 1997. 

In the spring of 2019, David was named a Pritzker Fellow at the University of Chicago's Institute of Politics, where he led a seminar entitled "Mapping Our Future: Forecasting Elections & Redistricting 2021." A frequent speaker and guest lecturer, David has shared his insights into the latest political trends with audiences at Harvard's Institute of Politics, the Dole Institute of Politics, and Georgetown's Government Affairs Institute.

An enthusiast for data and maps, David served as a contributing writer for both the 2016 and 2014 editions of the Almanac of American Politics. Prior to joining The Cook Political Report in June 2007, David served for three years as House Editor of Sabato's Crystal Ball, a widely respected political analysis newsletter and website founded by Prof. Larry J. Sabato, Director of the University of Virginia's Center for Politics. 

A native of New Jersey, David holds a B.A. in Government with distinction from the University of Virginia and was awarded the 2006 Emmerich-Wright Outstanding Thesis prize for his study of congressional redistricting standards.

Updated: January 2024
Photo Credit: Ralph Alswang