Jessica Taylor

Jessica Taylor is the lead digital political reporter for NPR. Based in Washington, D.C., she covers the 2016 elections and national politics for NPR digital.

Before joining NPR in May 2015, Taylor was the campaign editor for The Hill newspaper where she oversaw the newspaper's 2014 midterm coverage, managed a team of political reporters and wrote her own biweekly column.

Prior to The Hill, Taylor was a writer and producer for MSNBC's "The Daily Rundown with Chuck Todd" and a contributor to the NBC News Political Unit. She covered and reported on the 2012 election as a senior analyst for The Rothenberg Gonzales Political Report. Her quotes have appeared in The New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today, as well as several state and regional newspapers across the country. Taylor has also appeared on MSNBC, Fox News, C-SPAN, CNN and other local network affiliates.

On Election Night 2012, Jessica served as an off-air analyst for CBS News in New York, advising producers and reporters on House and Senate races.

Previously, Jessica was editor of National Journal's "House Race Hotline" and Assistant Editor for POLITICO during the 2010 midterms. She began her career in Washington as the research director for The Almanac of American Politics.

A native of Elizabethton, Tenn., she is a graduate of Furman University in Greenville, S.C. and now lives in Alexandria, Va.

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz is the winner of the annual Conservative Political Action Conference's presidential straw poll.

Cruz won 40 percent of the votes from the conservative gathering's 2,659 attendees who voted. Florida Sen. Marco Rubio took second place with 30 percent. GOP front-runner Donald Trump, who controversially canceled his appearance planned for Saturday morning, finished third with just 15 percent. Ohio Gov. John Kasich was fourth with 8 percent.

Ted Cruz and Donald Trump split victories on Saturday, with the Texas senator posting big wins in the Kansas and Maine GOP caucuses and the real estate mogul winning the Kentucky caucuses and Louisiana primary.

In the Democratic race, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders notched victories in the Kansas and Nebraska caucuses, while former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton won the Louisiana primary.

The Republicans: Cruz emerges as leading anti-Trump candidate

Republican Ben Carson confirmed during his speech at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference that he is ending his bid for the White House.

The famed neurosurgeon had implied he was dropping out on Wednesday after a disappointing Super Tuesday finish, and he skipped Thursday night's debate in his hometown of Detroit.

Donald Trump has abruptly canceled a planned appearance Saturday morning at the Conservative Political Action Conference, a major annual gathering of the GOP faithful.

In a Friday afternoon typo-ridden statement, the GOP presidential front-runner said he instead will be holding a "major rally on Saturday prior to Caucus" in "Witchita, Kanasas" [sic].

The 11th Republican presidential debate reached a fever pitch on Thursday, with Republican rivals piling on Donald Trump as he slung back vulgar insults.

A day after he failed to crack 11 percent in any of the Super Tuesday presidential contests, retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson appears to be effectively ending his campaign for president.

Super Tuesday was a big night for both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. They each captured seven states in their respective Democratic and Republican races, extending leads over their remaining rivals.

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump notched big wins across the South on Super Tuesday as they extended their leads for their party's nomination.

On the Republican side, Trump has won seven states: Virginia, Arkansas, Alabama, Tennessee, Vermont, Massachusetts and Georgia. Sen. Ted Cruz won his home state of Texas, eked out a surprise victory in Oklahoma and won the caucuses in Alaska. Florida Sen. Marco Rubio finally got his first outright win by taking the Minnesota caucuses.

The big day is finally here — after tonight's Super Tuesday results, there will be a much clearer picture of how both the Republican and Democratic races could shake out. Will Donald Trump continue his dominance? Can Marco Rubio catch up? Can Ted Cruz rebound? Will Hillary Clinton roll through the South? Can Bernie Sanders bounce back after a devastating South Carolina loss?

The crux of Ted Cruz's campaign has long been mobilizing the Christian right to his side, working to galvanize enough evangelical voters to topple Donald Trump.

The Texas senator even launched his campaign at Liberty University, which claims to be the world's largest Christian college, declaring that "God isn't done with America yet."

Hillary Clinton won the South Carolina Democratic primary on Saturday, notching a decisive win in a state where she suffered a devastating loss just eight years ago.

The Associated Press called the race for the former secretary of state over rival Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders just seconds after the polls closed at 7 p.m. ET. With all precincts reporting, Clinton beat Sanders by nearly 50 points, winning 73.5 percent to 26 percent.

Eight years ago, South Carolina was where the wheels started to come off Hillary Clinton's campaign. But tonight, it could be where redemption begins.

The former secretary of state is heavily favored over rival Bernie Sanders in the Palmetto State, in part due to her advantage with the state's sizable African-American population.

As Donald Trump might say, Republican turnout in this year's presidential primaries so far has been yuuuuuuuge.

Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada all shattered previous records. Meanwhile, Democratic turnout has dropped since 2008, when the fight between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton set new benchmarks.

Donald Trump has won the Nevada Republican caucuses, giving the billionaire his third victory in two weeks and a huge surge of momentum heading into Super Tuesday.

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio held a narrow but decisive lead for second place over Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. With all caucus votes in, Rubio had 23.9 percent to Cruz's 21.4 percent, according to the Associated Press.

But it was Trump who towered above his two top rivals, nearly doubling the support of his nearest competitor with 45.9 percent of the vote.

Donald Trump posted a decisive victory Saturday night in South Carolina, a conservative state that on its face should have been inhospitable to the New York billionaire, but was anything but when voters went to the polls.

And Hillary Clinton pulled off a badly needed win in Nevada, besting Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders with an older, more diverse electorate in the state's caucuses.

As we dive into the entrance and exit polling data, here's four takeaways from the results.

1. Evangelical voters have faith in Donald Trump

Jeb Bush is ending his campaign for president after a disappointing showing in the South Carolina primary.

"The people of Iowa and New Hampshire and South Carolina have spoken, and I really respect their decision," the former Florida governor told his supporters gathered in Columbia on Saturday night. "So tonight, I am suspending my campaign."

"I congratulate my competitors, that are remaining on the island, on their success in a race that has been hard-fought, just as the contest for the presidency should be because it is a tough job," he continued.

Donald Trump has won the South Carolina primary, while Florida Sen. Marco Rubio appears to have edged out Texas Sen. Ted Cruz for second place.

"There's nothing easy about running for president, I can tell you. It's tough, it's nasty, it's mean, it's vicious, it's beautiful," Trump declared to his supporters at his victory rally in Spartanburg, S.C.

Trump took 32.5 percent of the vote, while Rubio and Cruz were nearly even with 22.5 percent and 22.3 percent, respectively.

The photo op at the end of Marco Rubio's Greenville rally Thursday morning was the stuff GOP dreams are made of.

The young Latino presidential candidate many top party leaders believe would be their best standard-bearer smiled and cheered, flanked by South Carolina's Indian-American female governor, the state's young black Republican senator and the congressman who's led the investigation into the Benghazi attacks and Hillary Clinton's involvement.

Ted Cruz needs an awakening among his religious base for a strong showing or a surprise win on Saturday in South Carolina.

In any other year in the GOP primary, the Texas senator, who talks of his faith with ease and frequently reiterates that he will defend religious liberty, might have the state's sizable evangelical vote sewn up. The voting bloc was crucial to his win in Iowa earlier this month, and religious conservatives make up an even larger share of the South Carolina Republican electorate.

Assistant House Democratic Leader Jim Clyburn will endorse Hillary Clinton on Friday, aides to the Democrat's campaign for president confirm to NPR.

The South Carolina congressman is expected to make the endorsement official during a press conference on Friday at Allen University in Columbia. The show of support from the highest ranking African-American in Congress comes just over a week before the Palmetto State primary. Clinton leads rival Bernie Sanders in the state, where black voters make up a majority of the state's primary electorate.

After Donald Trump threatened to sue Ted Cruz for defamation over an ad he's running on Trump's past support for abortion, the Texas senator had one message for the billionaire businessman: Bring it on.

South Carolina is known for its rough and tumble politics, and Saturday night's CBS News debate in Greenville, S.C., certainly held true to that characterization.

It was the most vicious and unruly debate yet this cycle, prompting moderator John Dickerson to even interject at one point that he was "going to turn this car around!"

The latest batch of Hillary Clinton's emails from her time at the State Department includes 84 additional classified documents.

The new emails from her controversial private server, which were retroactively classified since she left office, include 81 which had been upgraded to confidential status and three to secret status. (Classified parts were redacted.)

The political world is already turning its attention to South Carolina, where the remaining Republican presidential candidates debate tonight. The Palmetto State votes Feb. 20th in the GOP primary and Feb. 27th for the Democrats.

Jim Gilmore's quixotic presidential campaign came to a surreptitious end Friday.

His resume reads like someone who should have been a top-tier candidate — former governor of swing-state Virginia, a former Republican National Committee chairman, and the only military veteran in a primary campaign where national security is a top concern among voters.

When Ted Cruz took the stage at his primary night party in Hollis, N.H., he gave what sounded like a victory speech. And in some ways, he may have been an overlooked winner of the night.

"Washington insiders were convinced our wave of support would break in the Granite State," the Texas senator thundered. "The men and women of New Hampshire proved them wrong."

The TVs flanking him showed the results; he was edging out former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. Cruz finished with just under 12 percent, good enough in the crowded field for third place.

Tuesday night's New Hampshire primary offered little surprise in terms of who actually won: Donald Trump triumphed big on the GOP side, while Bernie Sanders crushed Hillary Clinton with Democratic voters, just as polls had predicted.

Jeb Bush may finally be hitting his stride. The former Florida governor will find out Tuesday night whether that's too little, too late to save his White House hopes.

For more than two decades, New Hampshire has been a place of redemption for the Clintons. That could come to an end Tuesday night.

The Granite State revived Hillary Clinton's 2008 campaign after a devastating Iowa loss to Barack Obama. That victory helped her become the new "Comeback Kid" — the same moniker her husband claimed after his strong finish in the state in 1992 jump-started his road to the Democratic nomination.

Two days after finishing second in Iowa, Donald Trump is now alleging that winner Ted Cruz cheated and is threatening to sue over the results.

The confrontational billionaire made his complaints known in his usual way — a series of tweets. The crux of his complaint: the Texas senator's campaign committed "fraud" when it informed caucusgoers of a CNN report that rival Ben Carson was leaving the campaign trail to head home to Florida after the Iowa caucuses, which many speculated meant he might drop out.

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