Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Eleventh-Hour Senate Roundup - Incumbents & Holds

In 2006 when I was still writing for Liberal Avenger I did a series handicapping the Senate races as we approached what turned out to be a Democratic takeover in both houses of Congress.

Having an infant in the house, I haven't had the time this year, but I wanted to run down what's going on in the various races at least once before the election, so people can get a clear idea of what's in play and what's not.

We'll start with the clear holds. There are eight races in which a Republican incumbent is cruising to reelection: Wyoming (John Barrasso), Kansas (Pat Roberts), Oklahoma (James Inhofe), Tennessee (Lamar Alexander), Alabama (Jeff Sessions), Mississippi (Thad Cochran) South Carolina (Lindsey Graham), and Maine (Susan Collins.) There are two races in which a Republican is running for a safe seat that's been vacated by another Republican. One is Idaho, where former governor Jim Risch is running for Larry "Wide Stance" Craig's open seat, and the other is Nebraska, where Mike Johanns is running to succeed the retiring Chuck Hagel.

There are twelve races in which Democratic incumbents are cruising to reelection: Montana (Max Baucus), South Dakota (Tim Johnson), Iowa (Tom Harken) Arkansas (Mark Pryor), Louisiana (Mary Landreiu), Illinois (Dick Durbin), Michigan (Carl Levin), West Virginia (Jay Rockefeller), Delaware (Joe Biden's expiring contract), New Jersey (Frank Lautenberg), Rhode Island (Jack Reed), and Massachusetts (John Kerry.)

Next, the competitive races...

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