Argh. What are the National Republican Senatorial Committee, and grassroots Republicans and conservatives, supposed to do, now that Todd Akin has exponentially complicated the effort to defeat Sen. Claire McCaskill in Missouri, and win the three (or four, if Romney doesn’t win) seats needed to take over the Senate?
All they have is Nebraska, where state senator Deb Fischer holds an 18-point lead over Democrat Bob Kerrey in a seat where incumbent Democrat Ben Nelson is retiring, and North Dakota, where Rick Berg is up 9 on in a seat where incumbent Democrat Kent Conrad is retiring . . .
and Montana, where Rep. Denny Rehberg has a small but consistent lead over incumbent Jon Tester . . .
and Wisconsin, where Tommy Thompson has an increasing lead over Tammy Baldwin to fill the Senate seat occupied by the retiring Herb Kohl . . .
. . . but they have to make up the likely loss in Maine, where either a Democrat or a Democratic-leaning independent is likely to replace Sen. Olympia Snowe . . . and they need to keep Sen. Scott Brown in office in Massachusetts, where the latest poll has him . . . er, only up by 5 . . .
. . . and they have to hold Indiana in a presidential year, when Rasmussen has Republican Richard Mourdock slightly ahead . . . and make sure that Sen. Dean Heller keeps his consistent lead in Nevada . . .
. . . what’s this? Could incumbent Democrat Senator Sherrod Brown really be tied with GOP challenger Josh Mandel in Ohio, as Rasmussen suggests? And what’s this eye-popping suggestion that in Connecticut, “former wrestling executive Linda McMahon holds a narrow lead over Democratic Congressman Chris Murphy in Rasmussen Reports’ first look at Connecticut’s U.S. Senate race. A new telephone survey of Likely Voters in Connecticut shows McMahon with 49 percent of the vote to Murphy’s 46 percent . . .”
Gee, suddenly the outlook for Republicans in the Senate races doesn’t look so bad anymore, does it?