Jessica Taylor

Senate & Governors Editor, The Cook Political Report
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  • Provides analyses of presidential, U.S. Senate, House and gubernatorial races, which has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and numerous other publications
  • Spent five years as a political reporter for NPR, covering elections and breaking news
  • Reported on politics for several prestigious outlets over the past decade — including the NBC News Political Unit, National Journal, Politico and The Hill
  • Media appearances on MSNBC, Fox News, C-SPAN and CNN

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Jessica Taylor is the Senate and Governors Editor for The Cook Political Report. 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 Cook Political Report, "a newsletter that both parties regard as authoritative."

In her presentations, Taylor draws on years of experience covering elections and breaking news to provide a detailed look at the key dynamics and factors that will impact upcoming key Presidential, House, Senate, and gubernatorial races. Exclusively represented by Leading Authorities speakers bureau, she takes a look back at past precedents, analyzes current events and polling numbers, and highlights the critical trends to watch that will shape the future political landscape.

Before joining Cook, Taylor was a political reporter for National Public Radio for five years, where she covered elections and breaking news, ranging from the White House to both chambers of Congress and statewide elections. She was also a contributing author to the 2020 edition of The Almanac of American Politics.

Taylor has previously served as a senior analyst/reporter for The Rothenberg Political Report (now Inside Elections), where her quotes and analysis appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and numerous other publications. She has reported on politics for several prestigious outlets over the past decade — including the NBC News Political Unit, National Journal, Politico and The Hill, where she served as campaign editor. She has appeared on MSNBC, Fox News, C-SPAN and CNN. Her expert analysis contributed to real-time election night coverage and analysis at CBS in 2012.

A Tennessee native, she graduated magna cum laude in 2007 with a B.A. in political science from Furman University in South Carolina.

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Jessica Taylor: Analysis on 2020 Senate Election

2020 Outlook: Senate, House, and Governors Races. In this talk, Jessica will provide a detailed look at the most important races that will decide the balance of power in Congress. With the Senate firmly in play in 2020, she will explain the multiple paths Democrats have to flip control and the issues that will drive the election. She will also take a look back at how the 2018 elections and Democrats flipping the House is instructive for the 2020 races. And with governors in the spotlight for their handling of the COVID19 pandemic, Jessica will explain how their increased popularity and job approval may impact this year's elections, and could put a priority on governing experience in future elections.

Historical Changes in Partisanship and Voter Behavior. In this presentation, Jessica will show how partisanship and ticket-splitting has decreased over the past few decades and the impact that has had on elections and governance. She will also explore how sitting senators now often struggle to outperform their presidential party's nominee, which wasn't the case even a few election cycles ago.

Presidential Primaries and 2020 Election Outlook. In this talk, Jessica will draw on her years of political reporting experience to provide an analysis of the Democratic presidential primaries. She will also look forward to the 2020 race, including which states will be pivotal in the Electoral College and the trends and polling we are seeing in each.

The Impact of Trump on Suburbs and Rural Areas. Jessica will explain how President Trump has changed the electorate and put the suburbs in play, which caused the House to flip to Democrats in 2018 and now has imperiled the GOP's Senate majority. She will identify the major counties and areas to watch, and also look at how the increased rural vote may impact the 2020 elections.

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