Okay, I decided it was time for me to put on my rank punditry hat and start looking at the horserace stuff in the Senate. So here’s a pretty vanilla tally of things, that at least helps me commit this stuff to memory.
Lots of people say that without Delaware, taking back the senate is now impossible. Looking at this rundown in First Read, I’m not so sure:
1. North Dakota (1): Solid R
2. Arkansas (3): Probable R
3. Indiana (4): Probable R
4. Pennsylvania (5): Lean R
5. Illinois (6): Toss Up
6. Colorado (7): Toss Up
7. Nevada (8): Toss Up
8. Wisconsin (9): Toss Up
9. California (11): Toss Up
10. Washington (10): Toss Up
*** Nos. 11 through 21: Florida (Lean R), Missouri (Lean R), Kentucky (Lean R), West Virginia (Lean D), Ohio (Lean R), New Hampshire (Lean R), Connecticut (Lean D), North Carolina (Probable R), Louisiana (Probable R), Alaska (Probable R), Delaware (Probable D).
Geraghty or Ponnuru can check my math. But it looks to me that the GOP would need to hold all of the existing seats (FL, AK, OH, KY, MO, NH) – which looks likely – and then pick up 10 of the remaining 13 contested Dem seats (ND, AR, IN, PA, CO, WI, IL, CA, NV, WV, WA, CT and DE). The first five of those looks likely according to this chart by Mark Blumenthal:
The next three are doable if everything breaks the GOP way (I think Wisconsin is going to the GOP, by the way). That makes a pick-up of 8. Then the GOP would need to take 2 seats out of the five [Me: this originally said “four”]remaining races in West Virginia, Washington, Connecticut and Delaware.
Update: Getting better all the time. Several readers remind me that Charlie Cook put Connecticut in the toss-up column yesterday.
That would be a huge parlay. It’s doable in a wave election. But it would need to be a really big wave.