Charlie Cook's Guide to the Political Environment

With a little over a year until the mid-term elections, candidates and campaigns are still in the very early stages of development. However, understanding and appreciating the political environment in which these candidates are running is critical. To that end, we have compiled the polls and data we think best measure the national political mood, including President Trump's approval rating, voter opinion on the direction of the economy, the country and major issues like health care, as well as voter perceptions of the two parties. An easy to use chart – based off our most recent race ratings - shows what it would take for Democrats to gain a majority in the House and Senate. This guide is updated every week and we will be adding new benchmarks as the year goes on. For example, as we get closer to the election, the results of the generic ballot question ("which party do you plan to vote for in Congress?)" will become more salient. 

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