Thom's Blog - Tuesday November 2nd, 2010

While the House of Representatives is all but guaranteed to fall under Republican control by the end of the day, the Senate still offers hope for Democrats. Having a 59 seat majority heading into the election, 3 seats are already lost to Dems in Indiana, North Dakota, and Arkansas where Blanche Lincoln is down nearly 20 points – holding out on health care reform really helped her, huh? On top of that, Senator Russ Feingold is down 7 points in Wisconsin to Republican Ron Johnson putting the liberal stalwart in danger of losing his seat. Republicans also have small leads in Pennsylvania and Nevada where Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is down 3 points to perhaps the looniest tune in this campaign season – Sharon Angle. That race could hinge on just how many voters opt for the “none of the above” vote – a ballot option unique to Nevada and could garner a double-digit vote percentage. If these races are lost for Dems, that leaves 4 races where Dems will need to win at least one seat to keep control of the Senate: California, where Democrat Barbara Boxer leads Carly Fiorina by 4 points; Colorada, where Republican Ken Buck leads Michael Bennet by 2 points; Illinois, where Republican Mark Kirk leads Alexi Giannoulias by 3 points; and Washington, where Democrat Patty Murray lead Dino Rossi by 2 points. If you were to take the average of those 4 races, Democrats are leading by only 1 point – it’s going to be a close one. What is important to remember though is that many economists are predicting Obama’s economic policies to lead to a drastic improvement in our economy over the next 2 years, which could provide political fortune to the new class of Senators and Representatives in the next session of Congress. If Democrats can keep control of the Senate, they will be able to cash in on this success – albeit, it’s a tad too late to save them today. And that future success will only happen if they can manage to take credit for successes, something they haven't done for almost two years with any competence.

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