Donald Trump is the GOP Nominee. Now What?

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Nathan L. Gonzales May 5, 2016 · 10:00 AM EDT

Donald Trump will be the Republican nominee for president in 2016.  

Looking back for the answer to “How did we get here?” and forward to handicapping the general election, one word stands out: assumptions.

There was an assumption that once voters were reminded of any number of ways Donald Trump has contradicted the Republican Party and conservative movement, or just offended people in general, that his support would suffer. 

There was an assumption that Jeb Bush’s money machine would prevail. An assumption that the GOP field would consolidate more quickly to give voters a clear alternative to Trump. And an assumption that Trump couldn’t clear 40 percent in the primary.

There was also an assumption that the socialist label would doom Bernie Sanders’ candidacy.

These weren’t unreasonable assumptions. It was early analysis based on extensive historical record of how campaigns and political events unfold. But Trump doesn’t fit neatly into a past historical box and much of the early analysis played out very differently.

Now, there is prevailing analysis that Donald Trump, and his incredibly high unfavorability rating, will get clobbered by Hillary Clinton in the general election and take the Senate majority, and maybe even the House majority, down with him. 

That scenario is…

How Trump Gives Republicans a Chance to Hold Senate

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Nathan L. Gonzales May 5, 2016 · 9:59 AM EDT

While it may have been unthinkable to say twelve, nine, or even six months ago, Republicans couldn’t afford to not nominate Donald Trump for president. 

After winning Indiana and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz dropping out, the wealthy businessman will secure a majority of delegates before the Republican…

Colorado Senate: Republicans Struggle to Keep Bennet in Play

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May 5, 2016 · 9:58 AM EDT

The crowded GOP field to take on Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet narrowed recently from a dozen candidates to three contenders. 

Former El Paso County Commissioner Darryl Glenn was the only candidate to secure a position on the primary ballot at the state convention. It was a surprise boost of…

Illinois Senate: Kirk Downgraded to Lean Democratic

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May 5, 2016 · 9:57 AM EDT

Nearly a year ago, we moved Republican Mark Kirk from Pure Toss-Up to Toss-Up/Tilt Democratic. Over the last 12 months, there is little evidence that things have gotten any better for the senator and in fact the political climate may be getting much worse, prompting another ratings change. 

The…

Fresh Primary Results, Six Fresh Faces for Next Congress

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Nathan L. Gonzales May 5, 2016 · 9:56 AM EDT

A handful of recent primaries in relatively safe districts adds a half-dozen likely new Members to the 115th Congress next year. 

Democrat Raja Krishnamoorthi was the first new Member after winning the March primary in Illinois’ 8th District, which leans Democratic. Now he’s not alone in a class…