Stories

Behind closed doors: Republicans worry tax reform won't save GOP

House Speaker Paul Ryan casts his shadow on a glass door.
House Speaker Paul Ryan casts his shadow on a glass door. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

In mid May, senior House Republican officials huddled at the Hyatt on the Chesapeake Bay to discuss their messaging plan to save the House majority.

One of their guest speakers was the well-respected election forecaster Charlie Cook, who founded the non-partisan "Cook Political Report." According to sources in the room, Cook gave the Republican staffers a bleak view of the midterms. He said he was deeply skeptical that simply touting the economic wonders of tax reform would be enough to save the House.