Politics in Stereo

Democrats Abandoned Mary Landrieu in the Runoff. Does it Matter?

Nathan L. Gonzales December 11, 2014 · 1:36 PM EST

Party campaign committees are incumbent led and incumbent driven, so how important is it for the committees to support incumbents to the bitter end?

Democratic Sen. Mary L. Landrieu lost re-election in Louisiana, 56 percent to 44 percent, to Republican Rep. Bill Cassidy. But in the days running up to the race on Saturday, there was some criticism that the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee didn’t do enough to help the senator.

After Landrieu finished first, but with just 42 percent, in the November jungle primary, the DSCC cancelled its television ad reservations for the runoff and never replaced them.

“I wish she had more air cover,” Sen. Joe Donnelly, D-Ind., told The Hill before the runoff. “I was there because she’s my friend, but more importantly she’s done an extraordinary job for the people of Louisiana, and you don’t abandon your friends when times get tough.”

Meanwhile, Democratic strategists focused on the House are finding solace, and even taking some pride in the fact the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee didn’t abandon any incumbents in the face of a very tough election cycle.

The unofficial “No Incumbent Left Behind” motto, may not have been the optimal political strategy to hold down the party’s losses, but House strategists believed it was…

Mary Landrieu’s Loss and the End of Ticket Splitting

Stuart Rothenberg December 10, 2014 · 9:41 AM EST

Louisiana Sen. Mary L. Landrieu’s defeat in the Dec. 6 runoff certainly was no surprise. If anything, it seemed inevitable since the evening of Nov. 4, when it became clear a Republican rout was underway and Democrats would lose control of the Senate.

But the veteran Democrat’s defeat is another…

Draft Ben Carson Group Complicates Potential Presidential Campaign

Nathan L. Gonzales December 5, 2014 · 9:47 AM EST

Ben Carson is openly considering a run for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016, but an unaffiliated Super PAC trying to draft him into the race is making the effort complicated.

Last month, Buzzfeed detailed the fundraising and spending habits of the National Draft Ben Carson for…

Rothenberg’s End of the Year Awards for 2014

Stuart Rothenberg December 3, 2014 · 3:29 PM EST

Well, we’ve made it through another strange political year — and let’s face it, they are all strange — so it’s time for me to devote another column to picking the best, the worst and the weirdest candidates, campaigns and outcomes of the year.

As always, I will select a few nominees and offer…

How to Handle a Broken Campaign Promise

Nathan L. Gonzales December 2, 2014 · 10:20 AM EST

Broken campaign promises complicate a politician’s re-election effort, but they don’t have to be fatal.

This cycle, when faced with their own words from a previous campaign, two incumbents utilized different strategies in their quest for another term.

One of the most famous examples of a…