With less than six weeks to go, it's "oppo dump" o'clock — the time when both parties start unleashing their most damning opposition research about the other side's candidates on the airwaves or leaking it to friendly (or curious) media outlets.

So far, according to data compiled by the California Target Book's Rob Pyers, Republican outside groups (led by the NRCC and CLF) have spent $77 million across 54 competitive House seats to $57 spent by Democratic groups (led by the DCCC and House Majority PAC) across 50 races, partially offsetting Democratic incumbents' cash advantages. As in any year, the vast majority of both parties' communication has been negative.

Sometimes brutal narratives stick, and sometimes they fall flat. Because so many of this year's GOP nominees are non-incumbents who haven't faced intense scrutiny before, the bulk of new revelations are impacting Republicans. But unflattering stories have surfaced regarding several Democrats as well, threatening to derail their prospects. The final weeks will test who has the skills to deflect and pivot to offense, and who wilts under attack.

In Michigan's 3rd

More from the Cook Political Report

CPR 2024 National Polling Average
Cook Politcal Logo
First Person
Cook Politcal Logo