Senate News & Analysis

Numbers Game Still Favors GOP Senate Majority

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Stuart Rothenberg August 29, 2014 · 3:01 PM EDT

The GOP appears more likely than not to win the six seats in November (and December) that it needs for Senate control, but that is certainly not yet a done deal. Democratic incumbents continue to run energetic campaigns but the national dynamic favors GOP prospects.

Three states now…

2014 Senate Overview (August 29, 2014) Alabama - Kansas

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Stuart Rothenberg August 29, 2014 · 3:00 PM EDT

ALABAMA -- Jeff Sessions (R), elected 1996 (52%), 2002 (59%) and 2008 (63%). The last Democratic Senate nominee to receive even 40 percent of the vote in Alabama was Roger Bedford nearly 20 years ago. Safe Republican.

ALASKA -- Mark Begich (D), elected 2008 (48%). Daniel S. Sullivan,…

2014 Senate Overview (August 29, 2014) Kentucky - New Mexico

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Stuart Rothenberg August 29, 2014 · 2:58 PM EDT

KENTUCKY -- Mitch McConnell (R), elected 1984 (50%), 1990 (52%), 1996 (55%), 2002 (65%), 2008 (53%). Senate Minority Leader McConnell beat primary challenger Matt Bevin surprisingly easily, but Democratic Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes is a more challenging opponent. Early polling consistently suggested that Grimes was running about…

2014 Senate Overview (August 29, 2014) North Carolina - Wyoming

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Stuart Rothenberg August 29, 2014 · 2:57 PM EDT

NORTH CAROLINA -- Kay Hagan (D), elected 2008 (53%). Given the GOP’s recent victories in the state, Hagan certainly knew that she would have a serious challenge. State House Speaker Thom Tillis won the Republican nomination without a runoff, allowing him to avoid further attacks from the right and…

And the Winner of the GOP’s Civil War Primary Is…Part II

Stuart Rothenberg August 28, 2014 · 2:47 PM EDT

Three and a half months ago, I wrote about the state of the fight between the Republican establishment’s pragmatic conservative candidates and tea party/libertarian/anti-establishment conservatives.

I concluded the results were mixed and it was too early to call a winner, though I also noted, “it’s already clear…

Not Your Typical Southern Democrat in South Carolina

Stuart Rothenberg August 20, 2014 · 2:12 PM EDT

Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham’s Democratic opponent, state Sen. Brad Hutto, wants you to know two things: He has a path to victory against the two-term Republican, and it doesn’t require him to run from traditional Democratic positions.

“I’m not a Blue Dog,” Hutto said proudly during a recent…

Senate Races Shift to Higher Gear

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Nathan L. Gonzales August 15, 2014 · 3:02 PM EDT

Senate races in North Carolina and Arkansas have been underway for months. But as primary season comes to an end, the fight for a Senate majority in 2015 is starting to reach a full sprint nationally.

Republicans in Alaska will choose their nominee next Tuesday, but the general…

Self-Fulfilling Prophecy Might Be Why Americans Hate Congress

Stuart Rothenberg August 13, 2014 · 10:38 AM EDT

The media’s narrative about Congress is clear: It is unproductive, members care only about getting re-elected and they have failed to do their jobs.

So it should come as no surprise that Americans believe Congress has been unproductive, that members don’t care about doing the right thing, but…

Democratic Retirements Put the Senate in Play

Nathan L. Gonzales August 12, 2014 · 9:06 AM EDT

President Barack Obama’s slumping job approval rating isn’t doing Democrats any favors in the party’s quest to hold a majority in the Senate. But without a handful of Democratic retirements, the Senate likely wouldn’t be in play at all.

Republicans need a net gain of six Senate seats…

Walsh Drops Out, Montana Senate Moves to Republican Favored

Nathan L. Gonzales August 7, 2014 · 4:55 PM EDT

The Senate race in Montana continues to slip away from the Democrats. Burdened by plagiarism allegations, appointed-Sen. John Walsh, D, will not seek election to a full term in November. 

Democratic chances of holding the seat against At-Large Rep. Steve Daines, R, might improve slightly with a…