Search This Blog

Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Senate Elections: Good Signs for Team Red

At National Journal, Beth Reihhard totes up signs that the Senate field is expanding in the GOP's favor:
-- Ed Gillespie, a former Republican National Committee chairman with an enviable fundraising network, announced he would challenge Democrat Mark Warner. Warner is popular and has $7 million in the bank. But Virginia is shaping up to be a true swing state and Gillespie doesn't have to worry about a competitive primary. On Monday, one possible rival dropped out and another declined to jump in.
-- Michigan Republican Terri Lynn Land proved she could keep up with Peters' fundraising and put in $1.6 million of her own money to boot. Polls show a tight race. Republican Gov. Rick Snyder will also be on the ballot. "Everyone is bullish about Michigan right now," said Republican strategist Rick Wiley.
-- Democrats are so worried about the possibility of former Sen. Scott Brown challenging New Hampshire Sen. Jeanne Shaheen that they ran a pre-emptive attack ad against him on television. The former Massachusetts senator moved into his vacation home in the Granite State last year.
"I think it will be a barn burner if he gets in," said Democratic pollster John Anzalone. "Boston is the dominant TV market in New Hampshire, so he is universally known. He has a national fundraising base at well."
-- In North Carolina, one of the bellwether Senate races, two automated polls this month show Sen. Kay Hagan trailing one Republican opponent, state House Speaker Thom Tillis. One of those surveys is from North Carolina-based Democratic pollster, Public Policy Polling. The state backed both President Obama in 2008 and Mitt Romney in 2012. Hagan has been a prolific fundraiser, but is a first-term senator who isn't particularly well-known throughout the state.
-- Americans for Prosperity, the conservative juggernaut bankrolled by the Koch family, broadened its televised attacks on Obamacare to two states carried by Obama -- Michigan and Iowa. The group has spent $22 million already this cycle. A tongue-in-cheek post by the Center for Public Integrity noticed that the subject lines of the fundraising e-mails from the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee have gotten increasingly hysterical, from "deep trouble" to "doomed" to "catastrophic."
-- Oregon Republican Monica Wehby announced she raised $500,000 last year. It's a solidly Democratic state, but she's a pediatric neurosurgeon who supports abortion rights and immigration reform. If she wins the GOP primary, she will face Democratic Sen. Jeff Merkley.