Senate News & Analysis

Report Shorts (January 23, 2015) California Senate, Iowa Senate, Pennsylvania Senate

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January 23, 2015 · 1:31 PM EST

California Senate. Since our last issue, state Attorney General Kamala Harris (D) announced her candidacy in the race to replace retiring-Sen. Barbara Boxer (R). Harris won’t necessarily clear the field, but she is a top contender for the seat. On Thursday wealthy environmental activist Tom Steyer declined to run, but…

Why Democrats Can’t Count on Voters Blaming a ‘Republican Congress’

Stuart Rothenberg January 19, 2015 · 9:30 AM EST

Most emails I receive are fundraising propaganda easily ignored, since they aren’t strong on accuracy or thoughtfulness. Instead, they merely seek to incite and anger — and to get people to open their checkbooks to stop the forces of evil.

But the Monday email I received from the Progressive…

Will Improving Economy Help Obama’s Case on Keystone?

Stuart Rothenberg January 12, 2015 · 8:30 AM EST

Events matter in politics and, for a change, they potentially seem to offer a bit of aid and comfort to President Barack Obama in his upcoming battle with the Republican-controlled Congress.

After an impressive across-the-board victory that included a new Senate majority, gains to the party’s House majority and…

2016 Senate Overview: Republicans Start on the Defensive

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Nathan L. Gonzales January 9, 2015 · 1:34 PM EST

Mitch McConnell is just getting settled into the Senate Majority Leader’s office but Democrats are determined to make sure it’s a short stay.

The GOP rushed to a nine-seat gain and the Senate majority in 2014 by ensuring that the best candidates won competitive primaries, cultivating challengers to take…

2016 Senate Overview (January 9, 2015) Alabama - Kansas

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January 9, 2015 · 1:33 PM EST

ALABAMA – Richard Shelby (R) elected 1986 (50%), 1992 (65%), 1998 (63%), 2004 (68%), 2010 (65%). After five terms and 30 years in the Senate, Shelby might look like a candidate who is ripe for an anti-establishment challenger. But the senator had just short of $18 million in the bank…

2016 Senate Overview (January 9, 2015) Kentucky - New Mexico

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January 9, 2015 · 1:32 PM EST

KENTUCKY – Rand Paul (R) elected 2010 (56%). After knocking off establishment favorite Trey Grayson in the 2010 GOP primary and Democrat Jack Conway in the general election, Paul is up for re-election. But the senator has his eye on a bigger prize: the presidency. 

Under Kentucky law, candidates are…

2016 Senate Overview (January 9, 2015) New York - Wyoming

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January 9, 2015 · 1:31 PM EST

NEW YORK – Chuck Schumer (D) elected 1998 (55%), 2004 (71%), 2010 (66%). Some races are complicated; the one in New York is not. If Schumer runs for a fourth term, he will win. Safe for Democrats.

NORTH CAROLINA – Richard Burr (R) elected 2004 (52%), 2010 (55%). An official…

What Kind of Race Would Russ Feingold Run in 2016?

Nathan L. Gonzales December 19, 2014 · 9:27 AM EST

Former Sen. Russ Feingold, D-Wis., isn’t ruling out trying to get his former seat back this cycle. But it’s unclear how good of a campaign he will run.

Wisconsin Democratic Rep. Gwen Moore told Roll Call’s Alexis Levinson last week she expects Feingold to wage a rematch against GOP…

Democrats Abandoned Mary Landrieu in the Runoff. Does it Matter?

Nathan L. Gonzales December 11, 2014 · 1:36 PM EST

Party campaign committees are incumbent led and incumbent driven, so how important is it for the committees to support incumbents to the bitter end?

Democratic Sen. Mary L. Landrieu lost re-election in Louisiana, 56 percent to 44 percent, to Republican Rep. Bill Cassidy. But in the days running…

Mary Landrieu’s Loss and the End of Ticket Splitting

Stuart Rothenberg December 10, 2014 · 9:41 AM EST

Louisiana Sen. Mary L. Landrieu’s defeat in the Dec. 6 runoff certainly was no surprise. If anything, it seemed inevitable since the evening of Nov. 4, when it became clear a Republican rout was underway and Democrats would lose control of the Senate.

But the veteran Democrat’s defeat…