Sabato: The 2014 Senate race could be a coin-flip

posted at 7:21 pm on January 23, 2014 by Erika Johnsen

Oh, snap. Via Politico:

Tom Cotton, the Arkansas congressman who’s seen as perhaps the GOP’s top Senate recruit this cycle, has outraised incumbent Democratic Sen. Mark Pryor in the fourth quarter of 2013, Score has learned. The congressman brought in $1.24 million, compared with $1.1 million for Pryor… Cotton’s cash-on-hand figure now stands at $2.2 million, which is still considerably less than Pryor’s $4.2 million; that said, it’s a good sign for a challenger to be outraising his incumbent opponent, so Cotton could make up the gap this year if he keeps raising money at the rate he’s going now.

Cotton’s campaign chest still has some catching up to do, but their fundraising abilities certainly seem to be leveling out — probably not a welcome sign for Pryor, who looks like the weakest of the seven Democratic incumbents up for election in red-purple territory this year. University of Virginia (wahoowa!) Professor Larry Sabato has updated his crystal ball rankings with the Democrats playing defense accordingly, switching Pryor’s race from a “toss-up” to a “leans Republican” status, along with taking both North Carolina Sen. Kay Hagan and Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu’s races from “leans Democratic” to “toss-up.” That means we’ve got ourselves at least a 50/50 scenario, says Sabato, provided Republicans play their collective hand wisely:

There are all kinds of circumstances that will impact these races. As we’ve mentioned before, candidate selection — particularly for the Republicans — could make the difference in several places, like Alaska, Georgia, Iowa, Louisiana and North Carolina. But it may also just be that midterm 2014 will simply produce a leveling effect, where overextended Democrats — they hold seats in seven states Mitt Romney won in 2012, while Republicans hold only one President Obama-state seat — simply lose some seats that, in a politically polarized era, they don’t have much business holding, particularly with a potential drag coming from an unpopular Democratic president in the White House. …


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… particularly with a potential drag coming from an unpopular Democratic president in the White House.

Not to worry — Barky still has three years in which to get 75% of U.S. households on foodstamps, medicaid, et. al. …

ShainS on January 23, 2014 at 7:35 PM

MI, leans D? That’s pure tossup. Arguable that it’s a more fair tossup than NC as we already have an established well-funded candidate in the former and a primary still to be done in the latter.

Gingotts on January 23, 2014 at 7:47 PM

Obama’s Job Approval Points to 2014 Trouble for Democrats
From Sean Trende at Real Clear Politics

Cross-posted at Camped of the Right

Rovin on January 23, 2014 at 7:47 PM

Well, the home state is reliable….

Too bad I don’t live there anymore….

And too bad there’s only about 956 people that live there…

But in other news, Minnesota will, in all likelihood, re-elect Al Franken for a second term.

I don’t have any data to back that up, but I’ve been here long enough to make that bold prediction.

Minnesota is kinda like a mini New York. You have a couple of high density population centers where the populace has battened onto the Democrat (DFL in this neck of the woods) tit and found it sweet.

You could pretty much call Franken/Klobeshare ‘The Senators from the Great State of Cities of St. Paul and Minneapolis’.

BigWyo on January 23, 2014 at 7:49 PM

Does that coin have a donkey on both sides?

kcewa on January 23, 2014 at 7:56 PM

… particularly with a potential drag coming from an unpopular Democratic president in the White House.

Not to worry — Barky still has three years in which to get 75% of U.S. households on foodstamps, medicaid, et. al. …

ShainS on January 23, 2014 at 7:35 PM

By the times of the midterms millions more will quit looking for work and the Dems will be cheering on a sub 5 unemployment rate.

BTW Sabato has pretty much said to bet the house that the Pubs keep the House.

CWchangedhisNicagain on January 23, 2014 at 8:00 PM

Just don’t see Ga. anything but red.

The Democrats are running Sam Nunn’s daughter who hasn’t done anything, just running on daddy’s name.

We just have to find the best one to run against her out of a field of 5.

Barred on January 23, 2014 at 8:11 PM

Barred on January 23, 2014 at 8:11 PM

Kingston is probably the strongest candidate out of the ones that have declared.

GOPRanknFile on January 23, 2014 at 8:19 PM

I think the Dumb-ocrats will be in a lot more trouble in more states than this map indicates come November when people’s employer insurance gets cancelled.

gsherin on January 23, 2014 at 8:25 PM

Just don’t see Ga. anything but red.

The Democrats are running Sam Nunn’s daughter who hasn’t done anything, just running on daddy’s name.

We just have to find the best one to run against her out of a field of 5.

Barred on January 23, 2014 at 8:11 PM

I don’t see Nunn being too much of a threat once people realize that she’s not her daddy plus her support of liberal causes becomes well known. It’s also been almost two decades since Sam Nunn has been in office. If her last name was Miller I would be more concerned about this race.

Kingston is probably the strongest candidate out of the ones that have declared.

GOPRanknFile on January 23, 2014 at 8:19 PM

Yep, Kingston is probably the best bet. I like Broun, but he has a reputation of having a mouth that is ten seconds ahead of his brain.

midgeorgian on January 23, 2014 at 8:41 PM

we’ve got ourselves at least a 50/50 scenario, says Sabato, provided Republicans play their collective hand wisely

Lucy tees up the football for Charlie Brown…

Bruno Strozek on January 23, 2014 at 8:44 PM

That’s 48 too many traitors in the Senate.

SouthernGent on January 23, 2014 at 8:46 PM

I have heard a crazy rumor that a libertarian…maybe Ron Paul type…but on the free drugs end…might be going to challenge Ed Markey in MA. Not sure it is true and I don’t have a name, just let it flow freely with the drugs coming out of the Liberty party in MA, which is WAY not establishment in the 1960′s sense of the word, but more constitutional, because the amendment that frees you to have as much pot as you want validates the entire constitution….thank god…NO one likes Markey here…just the machine, so, for the right candidate, a rout.

Fleuries on January 23, 2014 at 8:52 PM

Kingston is probably the strongest candidate out of the ones that have declared.

GOPRanknFile on January 23, 2014 at 8:19 PM

Will not vote for Kingston.

topdawg on January 23, 2014 at 8:55 PM

I don’t think NC will be a toss up once the GOP primary is held. So far there are 7 candidates and at least 5 of them are running even or slightly ahead of Hagan. That will improve once the GOP has settled on a candidate.

TarheelBen on January 23, 2014 at 8:55 PM

If legalized dope is on the ballot, medical or otherwise, consider the ‘rat for the win.

Lanceman on January 23, 2014 at 9:14 PM

It’s so funny how all the tru-cons are cheering for Cotton to get into the Senate, all too oblivious to the inevitable pro “amnesty” position he’ll take (kinda like Reagan, huh? Or not quite as bad?). At that point the RINO hunters will be out for blood, begging some other tru-con to primary him. But it’s too late. He’ll be lodged up there for life.

ceruleanblue on January 23, 2014 at 10:59 PM

Will not vote for Kingston.

topdawg on January 23, 2014 at 8:55 PM

Really? You’d vote for Michelle Nunn before you’d vote for Kingston? Why in God’s name would you do something so stupid? Kingston may not be as conservative as Broun, but he’s so vastly preferable to Nunn that objecting to him as the GOP nominee is inconceivable. I’d rather have someone who votes my way 100% of the time, but I’ll take someone who votes my way 90% of the time over someone who votes my way 10% of the time.

If you’re one of those people who supported Sharron Angle, Ken Buck, and Christine O’Donnell, then I’ll blame you for the last four years of Harry Reid’s reign of terror. I’d rather have a RINO who would put the senate in GOP hands than an ideologically pure candidate who loses to some Democratic loser who votes in lockstep with the Obama regime and his boot-licking lackey Harry Reid.

Horologium on January 24, 2014 at 1:24 AM

50/50? I’ll believe it when I see it… if its close, ITS NOT CLOSE…

Khun Joe on January 24, 2014 at 8:07 AM

I think TarHeelBen nails it on NC–Hagan’s getting elected was purely a matter of being dragged in on Obama’s coattails and enormous African-American turnout. She’s dead in the water this time out.

Same for Landrieu. That name isn’t going to help her any more, not with the OCare disaster, which I think is likely to wipe out Begich in Alaska as well, and might well net the GOP Michigan and Iowa, too.

Athanasius on January 24, 2014 at 8:51 AM