GOP still favoured to win the Senate

August 13th, 2014 at 11:00 am by David Farrar

Chris Cillizza at the Washington Post writes:

The decision by Sen. John Walsh (D-Mont.) not to seek election in November in the wake of a plagiarism scandal is the latest piece of good news for Republicans as they strive to take control of the Senate in less than three months.

Walsh’s departure from the race came in the same week that two Republican senators — Pat Roberts in Kansas and Lamar Alexander in Tennessee — defeated tea party challengers in primary fights, ensuring that every GOP senator seeking reelection would be the party’s nominee.

These past seven days typified the fates of the two parties this election cycle. Democrats have been hit by retirements in tough states — Montana, West Virginia, South Dakota and, to a lesser extent, Iowa — and Republicans haven’t nominated the sort of extreme candidates who lack broader appeal in a general election.

Those realities — along with a national playing field in which a handful of incumbent Democrats are defending Republican-leaning seats in places where President Obama is deeply unpopular — have made a GOP takeovera better-than-50/50 proposition.

Nate Silver agrees:

The problem for Democrats is that this year’s Senate races aren’t being fought in neutral territory. Instead, the Class II senators on the ballot this year come from states that gave Obama an average of just 46 percent of the vote in 2012.1

Democrats hold the majority of Class II seats now, but that’s because they were last contested in 2008, one of the best Democratic years of the past half-century. That year, Democrats won the popular vote for the U.S. House by almost 11 percentage points. Imagine if 2008 had been a neutral partisan environment instead. We can approximate this by applying a uniform swingof 11 percentage points toward Republicans in each Senate race. In that case, Democrats would have lost the races in Alaska, Colorado, Louisiana, Minnesota, New Hampshire, North Carolina and Oregon — and Republicans would already hold a 52-48 majority in the Senate.

It therefore shouldn’t be surprising that we continue to see Republicans as slightly more likely than not to win a net of six seats this November and control of the Senate. 

Harry Reid may come to regret effectively abolishing the filbuster. If the Democrats go into the minority, they will have sacrificed the tool that could require the majority to work with them.

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48 Responses to “GOP still favoured to win the Senate”

  1. dime (9,796 comments) says:

    Lame duck Obama?

    Id say this would tarnish his legacy, but he has so many achievements already it wont matter…

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  2. All_on_Red (1,559 comments) says:

    If there is anyone who typifies the worst of the American system, it’s Harry Reid.

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  3. sbk (312 comments) says:

    what the hell…Obama dont need em…he has got a pen and a phone.

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  4. flipper (3,950 comments) says:

    Come in Kiwi in America……

    Nate Silver’s analysis is convincing when looked at down here.

    And I agree with DPF’s comment …. “..Harry Reid may come to regret effectively abolishing the filibuster. If the Democrats go into the minority, they will have sacrificed the tool that could require the majority to work with them.”

    Wot say U, KIA ????

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  5. tom hunter (4,704 comments) says:

    I wonder what they’ll do when they win?

    As far as Obama being a lame duck is concerned he’s been that anyway since January 20, 2013, due to his incompetence at anything political aside from campaigning. I see that bagging him has finally started on the Democrat side with Hillary in the lead:

    “The failure to help build up a credible fighting force of the people who were the originators of the protests against Assad. . .left a big vacuum, which the jihadists have now filled,”

    Sure Hillary, sure. Remind me again who was Secretary of State during that time?

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  6. kowtow (8,186 comments) says:

    “……extreme candidates……”

    The media language seeking to denormalise grass roots politicians who seek smaller governmnt,responsible fiscal policies,citizens rights ,protection of borders and the national interest.

    Strange how what was once common sense and mainstream not so long ago is now cast as “extreme”.

    The true extremists are the members of the permanent political class who have driven the US into fiscal bankruptcy.Republican and Democrat alike.

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  7. KiwiGreg (3,234 comments) says:

    LOL Tom – that is EXACTLY what I said at lunch yesterday

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  8. stephieboy (2,693 comments) says:

    Actually Tom Hunter now that the alleged Benghazi cover up/ conspiracy / scandal has found in favour of Obama by successive house and senate committees he and his administration are not looking that bad.

    I think the alternative economic prescription offered by your Queen Sarah and certain Liberatrran Tea Party nut jobs are either non existent or are moon bat stuff e.g abolishing the Federal Reserve , Gold Standard etc stuff.

    P.S. Like Benghazi Obama arming ISIS and Sunni radical factions in Syria i is alie and a myth .

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  9. OECD rank 22 kiwi (2,743 comments) says:

    Well this is good news. More time for Golf in Hawaii with John Key. Now we know John Key’s crowning achievement of a 3rd term National Government. A visit by the President of the USA to little old New Zealand on his farewell tour. Why is it only Democrat presidents that bother to come to New Zealand?

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  10. RRM (9,784 comments) says:

    Moderate, electable candidates?

    So the GOP is finally seeing sense and realised democracy means they are meant to serve, not lead?

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  11. grumpyoldhori (2,361 comments) says:

    So if the idiots have control will they be looking to send USA ground troops into combat in the Middle East once more or would they chicken out.?

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  12. DJP6-25 (1,362 comments) says:

    I wonder if it’ll really make much difference.

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  13. Manolo (13,518 comments) says:

    Unpopular? The Messiah is NEVER unpopular according to stephieboy.

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  14. All_on_Red (1,559 comments) says:

    Isn’t Barry O down to 39% approval now? I see he was slagging off Shillary the other day too. Doncha love it when the left start eating each other. Come that Senate race you just watch the Democrat incumbents start the finger pointing just to save their own place at the trough.

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  15. tom hunter (4,704 comments) says:

    …. he and his administration are not looking that bad.

    Only Robin Williams could deliver that line. Still, it’s good to see the spirit of 2008 still alive. Heh, heh, heh.

    … will they be looking to send USA ground troops into combat in the Middle East once more or would they chicken out.?

    In case you haven’t noticed GOH there are already several hundred US “advisers” on the ground already, far beyond what was announced a month or more ago, and more on the way.

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  16. RRM (9,784 comments) says:

    Unpopular? The Messiah is NEVER unpopular according to stephieboy

    And the Hockey Mom was never unpopular according to your idol, saint bedwetter. What’s your point?

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  17. simonway (381 comments) says:

    Yes, after all, the filibuster is what forced the GOP to appoint moderate judges such as John Roberts and Sam Alito. Without it, Bush would have been free to have orthodox, party-line Republican justices confirmed to the Supreme Court. The Democrats may well come to regret getting rid of it.

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  18. stephieboy (2,693 comments) says:

    Tom Hunter, well at least you seem to acknowledge the GOP and Tea Party led farce over Benghazi. A plus for that and another plus for apparently conceding that Obama did not send military aid to radical sunni faction Rebels in Syria

    “not bad” ? yes in relation to the massive debt crises inherited by GWB who, among many things , tried to pay for a war by Tax Cuts and a credit card so to speak,

    And ” not bad ” by winning his second term quite convincingly and against the odds . At least according to Fox News and other right media propaganda . Propaganda and lies that included that Obama was “deranged ” and of course like Ted Gruz not born in the USA .

    Not bad at all.!

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  19. s.russell (1,601 comments) says:

    This would be encouraging if the Republicans were actually competing with Democrats to offer better policies for the United States. Instead the two parties seem to be in a competition to see who can offer the most insanity.

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  20. tom hunter (4,704 comments) says:

    @ Stephieboy

    This may come as a surprise to you (I’m sure many things do) but I never claimed Obama had been sending military aid to radical Sunni faction rebels in Syria. You’re thinking of UglyTruth or one of your other bete noirs on this blog. As with almost everything else you rail against it’s a straw man.

    You really should be fighting with the Democrats who are now sticking it to Obama. No straw man there, especially with the woman whose praises you’ll be singing in a couple of years time.

    Having said that, here’s another RWNJ site that explores the limited aid that Obama did send to rebels in Syria – Arming The Rebels. It’s only 20 minutes long and it comes from the Frontline current affairs show in the USA, run by the Public Broadcasting Service.

    Enjoy!

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  21. ross411 (560 comments) says:

    dime (9,549 comments) says:
    August 13th, 2014 at 11:02 am
    Lame duck Obama?

    Id say this would tarnish his legacy, but he has so many achievements already it wont matter…

    Best recent head of state who didn’t do anything about torture. Best botching of repackaged republican policy in the form of Obamacare. Most unworthy Nobel peace prize recipient.

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  22. stephieboy (2,693 comments) says:

    Tom Hunter, yes the US sent military aid to the rebels. No denying that but did not include more sophisticated weaponry like air to surface missiles least they fell into Radical Sunni factions hands.
    That would be highly irresponsible as ISIS now in Iraq shows

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  23. tom hunter (4,704 comments) says:

    Incidently Stephieboy I’m glad to see that you’re now as comfortable as the Obama minions were with having rousted a man out of bed in the middle of the night so they could throw him in jail for violating his parole – by uploading some shitty little trailer to YouTube for his equally shitty movie that no one actually ever saw, but which got the blame for days on end for everything bad that happened in Benghazi.

    Why I even recall Hillary looking one of the parents of the dead guys right in the eye and telling the poor, grieving bastard that ‘We’re going to have that person arrested and prosecuted that did the video.’ And of course they did.

    Classy defence of civil rights there. Very Chicagoan. Nobody will ever apologise of course, least of all an Obama sycophant like you.

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  24. dcrown (15 comments) says:

    “… effectively abolishing the filbuster.”

    DPF shows his ignorance once again. The ‘filbuster’ was effectively abolished for non Supreme Court judicial nominees only.
    All legislation can still be blocked unless 60 voted are mustered.
    No where in the Constitution does it state that 60 votes are required for legislation to pass the Senate either.

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  25. BlairM (2,314 comments) says:

    The moderates are winning simply because this time they are ready, and they have mobilized the money to bury their opponents. Despite the myth that the Tea Party are all puppets of the Koch brothers, it’s largely a grassroots organization who have, unfortunately, put up candidates who don’t know how to play the game as well as the so-called *establishment*.

    If the Wets are holding the balance of power in the next Senate, a GOP majority will make very little difference in terms of practical outcome.

    The state of politics in the US is completely dire at the moment. About the only sane one out there right now is Rand Paul.

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  26. Rightandleft (662 comments) says:

    The filibuster is an anti-democratic anachronistic Senate rule that has no basis in the Constitution. It should be entirely abolished or elections essentially mean nothing as the ruling party cannot carry out any of their promises. I don’t care if that hurts the Democrats or Republicans, the winners should have the ability to carry out their agenda and if the people don’t like it there’s another election in just 2 years. Imagine if a Greens/Labour opposition could block every Bill English budget. Nothing would ever get done.

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  27. stephieboy (2,693 comments) says:

    BlairM, Rand Paul due to his more liberal pro gay rights would be unacceptable to Tea Party Republicans .

    The Tea Party might grass roots as far as the Republican right is concerned but not your average Joe and Jane Citizen I suspect.

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  28. tom hunter (4,704 comments) says:

    If the Wets are holding the balance of power in the next Senate, a GOP majority will make very little difference in terms of practical outcome.

    Cynicism aside I think we might be surprised since the Wets have had the fear of god put into them over the last few years by the Tea Party groups. It only takes one ageing bum to lose a primary to make the rest of them sit up and take notice, and more than a few GOP Senators and Congressional seat warmers have gone down.

    Moreover the days of Arlen Specter have gone. It will be some time before we ever again see people responding to the rally-round-the-flag bullshit that saw him keep his seat – before stabbing everybody in the back. The rest have to at least pander and not just during elections but in governance also. As just one example, were it not for the grassroots the GOP would already have followed it’s corporate sponsors and pushed through the immigration bill they so badly want.

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  29. ShawnLH (4,482 comments) says:

    @ Stephieboy

    “Actually Tom Hunter now that the alleged Benghazi cover up/ conspiracy / scandal has found in favour of Obama by successive house and senate committees he and his administration are not looking that bad.”

    LOIS LERNER.

    Sorry Stephie, but there are many issues still unresolved, and the one not looking good at all for the Dems is the fact that Obama’s appointment to the IRS abused her position to to specifically target conservative groups.

    This scandal is still ongoing.

    And apart from that the polls are dismal for the Dems and Obama.

    The Republicans will take the Senate, and I suspect the Presidency two years later.

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  30. stephieboy (2,693 comments) says:

    Shawn LH , scandal still on going.??

    In whose estimation.???

    IRS Target conservative groups.???

    Bollux,

    http://www.salon.com/2013/06/27/irs_scandal_is_republicans_zombie/

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/01/14/us-usa-tax-teaparty-idUSBREA0D03420140114

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  31. ShawnLH (4,482 comments) says:

    Salon Stephie? The reliably biased far left Salon?

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  32. scrubone (3,091 comments) says:

    stephieboy, I was suprised to see your claim, so I googled Benghazi.

    It looks like there are more hearings this week. So not sure what you’re really claiming.

    And please do tell how the IRS scandal has concluded, given the emails that didn’t mysteriously get lost paint Lois Learner in such a bad light.

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  33. ShawnLH (4,482 comments) says:

    Wikipedia on the scandal.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2013_IRS_controversy

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  34. ShawnLH (4,482 comments) says:

    “It looks like there are more hearings this week. So not sure what you’re really claiming.”

    Stephie’s statements on domestic US politics are not reliable.

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  35. tom hunter (4,704 comments) says:

    It will be interesting to see if a new GOP Senate decides to launch their own investigation into some of the Benghazi questions – such as how the order to get the LA filmmaker for something (anything) was transmitted down the line? Hillary -> Eric -> LA Police.

    Not to mention the IRS. There are now twenty people who’ve either lost or had destroyed, emails involving the IRS. It’s been said many times but if this was a Republican administration all this stuff would be front page for months.

    In some respects a future GOP administration will be grateful as they will now have all the ways to avoid this crap laid out. Reporter Sharyl Attkisson nailed this the other day on ABC’s The Week show as they reviewed Watergate and she got a question about how it would be dealt with nowadays:

    I think that we’ve gone backwards since that time when we really felt empowered as journalists. And I like to think as what would happen today during a Nixon type scandal, Nixon would basically refuse to turn over tapes to congress, his aides would refuse to testify to congress or would take the fifth or would lie to congress with fair amount of impunity. Woodward and Bernstein will be controversialized on social media by special and political interests.

    RADDATZ: Well, this is all very depressing–

    ATTKISSON: — Facebook accounts. And then at the end, Nixon would go on a popular late night comedy show during which time he would humorously refer to his attackers as people that were political witch hunters who believe in Area 51 type conspiracies.

    I can’t wait!

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  36. scrubone (3,091 comments) says:

    Uh stephieboy, that Salon article is from last year, and contains the never-credible claim that progressive groups were targeted.

    Update: also contains the discredited claim that this was because of a “flood” of Tea Party applications.

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  37. All_on_Red (1,559 comments) says:

    Is that Lois ” I plead the fifth” Lerner?
    Very convenient twenty key players had their hard drives mysteriously wiped clean. Where’s Ugly when you need him.

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  38. scrubone (3,091 comments) says:

    Not to mention the IRS. There are now twenty people who’ve either lost or had destroyed, emails involving the IRS. It’s been said many times but if this was a Republican administration all this stuff would be front page for months.

    The ridiculous thing is that Nixon dreamed of targeting powerful enemies. The IRS under Obama didn’t dream, it *did* attack not the powerful, but grass-roots groups.

    That’s far, far worse than what Nixon did.

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  39. scrubone (3,091 comments) says:

    Very convenient twenty key players had their hard drives mysteriously wiped clean.

    And extremely odd that an IT budget with billions to spend didn’t actually prioritise basic record-backup retention required by legislation. Essentially, that’s like saying you didn’t murder the guy because you were mugging someone on the other side of town.

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  40. stephieboy (2,693 comments) says:

    ShawnLH (4,156 comments) says:
    August 13th, 2014 at 5:09 pm

    salon.? And Fox News and say the Washington Times is what.?

    Conspiracy and Paranoia is again rife amongst the GOP right.!

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  41. stephieboy (2,693 comments) says:

    scrubone, my Reuter’s link was from 2014,

    Meanwhile,

    RS, Sen. Carl Levin, And The Truth Behind Right-Wing Media’s Latest Phony Conspiracy Theory

    “Right-wing media falsely claimed that newly released documents from Judicial Watch showed that Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI) pressured the IRS to target conservative groups for additional scrutiny. Levin’s letters simply show that he asked the IRS to hold both Democratic and Republican groups accountable to valid tax-exempt regulations, and he made his correspondence public record more than a year ago……. etc ”

    http://mediamatters.org/research/2014/05/16/irs-sen-carl-levin-and-the-truth-behind-right-w/199

    Again the facts are bi partisan Senate Committee and the more recent Republican led House committee have cleared the Obama administration of all wrong doing over Benghazi but if you must continue with your deluded nonsense .! .

    http://mediamatters.org/blog/2014/08/05/fox-news-quiet-after-congressional-report-finds/200318

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  42. EAD (950 comments) says:

    Really Stephie?

    Benghazi is Obama’s watergate, but worse:

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-benghazi-scandal-is-obamas-watergate-but-worse/5380238

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  43. stephieboy (2,693 comments) says:

    EAD, from the impeccable and indefatigable Global “Research “,

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/chemtrails-a-planetary-catastrophe-created-by-geo-engineering/5355299

    and this priceless piece of rubbish,

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/obama-s-birth-certificate-obama-s-forgery-and-fraud-have-become-a-thorn-in-the-side-of-the-union/30051

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  44. ShawnLH (4,482 comments) says:

    “Conspiracy and Paranoia is again rife amongst the GOP right.!”

    Conspiracy and Paranoia is again rife amongst the Democratic Left as well. That’s politics.

    And my point about Salon is that you cannot complain about posts from Fox if your going to post from Salon.

    We both source from more or less biased partisan mainstream sources. Just be honest about it. I’m biased and I source from biased web sites. Your biased and you source from biased web sites. No big deal.

    I do agree with you however that posting anything from ‘global research’ automatically disqualifies the poster from being taken seriously.

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  45. stephieboy (2,693 comments) says:

    Shawn L H,

    But one example of Fox’s false claims/ lies,

    http://www.christianpost.com/news/fox-news-anchor-apologizes-for-false-claim-about-obama-funding-muslim-museum-106211/

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  46. ShawnLH (4,482 comments) says:

    Yes but stephie I could find just as many from CNN or Salon or other biased sources.

    http://newsbusters.org

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  47. stephieboy (2,693 comments) says:

    Shawn L H, But the line needs to be drawn between bias and making utterly bogus , false and crazy claims claims,
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fox_News_Channel_controversies
    Including this one,
    Discredited military and counterterrorism editor[edit]
    • The New York Times ran an article entitled “At Fox News, the Colonel Who Wasn’t” by Jim Rutenberg,[157] revealing that Joseph A. Cafasso, whom Fox had employed for four months as a Military and Counterterrorism Editor, had bogus military credentials.

    http://sec-global.com/services/ctp/vsg/news/020429.html

    Not to speak of the redoubtable Glenn Beck,

    http://mediamatters.org/research/2011/04/06/the-50-worst-things-glenn-beck-said-on-fox-news/178421

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  48. EAD (950 comments) says:

    Have you ever seen this one Stephie – Glenn Beck exposes the Fed, then gets fired by Fox.

    I never could stand Beck, but he is right on with this whole pyramid scheme of Central Banking

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