Senate 2008 Guru: Following the Races

Keeping a close eye on developments in the 2008 U.S. Senate races

Friday, June 29, 2007

Friday Quick Hits and Predictions

  • Kentucky: For conservatives displeased with Mitch McConnell, this is likely too little, too late.

  • New Hampshire: The Draft Shaheen website offers this handy (but hardly exhaustive) rundown of areas in which Sprintin' John Sununu is out of touch with New Hampshire voters, including Iraq, the environment, and health care. Expect lots more as Sununu continues to vote far to the right of mainstream New Hampshire.

  • Minnesota:'s Friday News Update offers this tidbit about a very disturbing gimmick:

    MINNESOTA: In the category of stupid candidate tricks, meet gadfly hopeful James D. McBroom (Independence-MN). McBroom just legally changed his name to "James Broom Wellstone" and announced his candidacy against US Senator Norm Coleman (R). The seat was formerly held by the late US Senator Paul Wellstone (DFL), who died in a plane crash one month before the 2002 election. And talk about misleading, the guy's new campaign website features video and pix of Senator Wellsone. This ploy has failed in Minnesota in the past, when frequent candidate Mary Jane Rachner legally changed her name to Patricia Reagan to run for Congress yet again in the 2000 GOP primary. It made no difference, as Reagan/Rachner lost by the same lopsided margin as she always did. Look for the strategy to work just as well for McBroom/Wellstone next year.
    Definitely disturbing. I wonder if the Wellstone family can or will request that photos of, videos of, and references to Senator Wellstone be removed from McBroom's website.

  • Since this morning is light on news, I thought I'd throw a handful of predictions out there that you could debate in the comments if the mood struck you (or you could offer your own predictions):
    1) John Warner, Larry Craig, and Chuck Hagel will all opt against running for re-election to the Senate in 2008.
    2) Thad Cochran will run for re-election.
    3) Popular former Governors Jeanne Shaheen and Mark Warner will enter their states' respective Senate races and win.
    4) At least four incumbent Republican Senators running for re-election will face primary opponents.
    5) Assuming Tim Johnson opts for a re-election bid and his health remains stable, Democratic Senators will repeat their 2006 feat of holding every incumbent seat, yes including Mary Landrieu's.
    6) Either Pete Domenici or Ted Stevens won't be a Senator after January 2009.
    7) The DSCC will ouraise the NRSC in every quarter for the remainder of 2007.


    Blogger VA Blogger said...


    1) Warner, Craig, and Cochran will run for re-election. Hagel will not.

    2) Shaheen and Warner both do not run.

    3) I'm having trouble with the primary prediction, because many incumbents face, at least nominally, a primary challenge. Are you talking about a 1) difficult primary challenge, 2) a primary challenge that requires the incumbent to acknowledge them, or 3) simply a name on the ballot alongside the incumbent?

    4) Mary Landrieu will lose.

    5) Tim Johnson runs again, Mike Rounds opts out of the race, and Johnson wins.

    6) Domenici will run for re-election and not face a significant challenger. Stevens will run for re-election, and face a stiffer challenger than in previous cycles, but still win by a sizable margin.

    As far as pick-ups:

    GOP will pick up Louisiana.
    Dems will pick up Colorado and New Hampshire.

    Senate will stand at 48-50-1-1, assuming no more unexpected vacancies.

    12:14 PM, June 29, 2007  
    Blogger Patrick Stewart said...

    1/2. Warner and Hagel do not. Cochran does not. Unsure on Craig.

    3. Shaheen runs. Warner and Kaine think something out in Virginia to make sure they keep the governor's mansion going into 2009.

    4. No comment.

    5. Johnson wins. Unknown on Landrieu. This may be the one case where Clinton may help a down ballot candidate.

    6.Not sure if either lose, but neither gets more than 55-57%.

    7. Definately agree.

    12:48 PM, June 29, 2007  
    Blogger Joseph said...

    btw, last comment was me, seems as though my friend got on my computer and published my comment on his name.

    12:49 PM, June 29, 2007  
    Blogger Andrew said...

    I agree with all of them except I dont know much about Thad Cochran but I bet he will run again.

    I really think the Democrats wont lose a single seat again. Tim Johnson is 100% safe unless Rounds come in to give him a decent challenge but he will still beat him. And I think Landriue will win. It will be close but I think she is the good, Southern Democrat that Lousiana favors. Voter registration is 2/3rd Democrats, she can do it if she makes all those Democrats come out and vote for her.

    1:00 PM, June 29, 2007  
    Blogger VA Blogger said...

    Andrew, Louisiana is 2/3rds Democrats, but they don't vote for Democratic candidates. Combined with the population losses after Katrina, and the GOP momentum in the state (Vitter and Jindal), there's not much support, circumstantially, for a Landrieu victory. And that's even before the consideration of opponents. You say that Louisiana favors her, but she's never had a big win before, and the state had changed a lot in the last five years.

    And there's always the possibility that Tim Johnson retires. I don't think it'll happen either, but between his current condition and prostate cancer in 2004, his health has to be a serious concern.

    2:04 PM, June 29, 2007  
    Blogger cilerder86 said...

    1) Warner, Hagel, and Domenici will not run for reelection. Craig will run for reelection. Rumors of his retirement are overblown.

    2) Not sure about Cochran.

    3) Agree. Warner and Shaheen will run and defeat their opponents.

    4) Viable primary opponents? Too early to tell.

    5) Landrieu still has relatively high approval ratings. LA senators were not blamed for the Katrina catastrophe. She has no opponent. She's going to win.

    Rounds isn't running. Even if Johnson retires, Herseth will step up. I think Johnson doesn't retire.

    6) Domenici won't be a senator, because I think he's retiring. I don't know what's going in Alaska right now. Will Stevens get a credible opponent?

    7) I think 5-6 Senate pick-ups: Colorado and New Hampshire are the most likely. We win 2 of Oregon, Minnesota, and Maine. We win 2 of Virginia, Nebraska, North Carolina, Alaska, Kentucky, and Texas.

    2:29 PM, June 29, 2007  
    Blogger apap said...

    qaxaDems win big...

    1.) Colorado - Udall wins
    2.) New Hampshire - Shaheen gets in and wins

    3.) Maine - Collins continues to stonewall. Allen wins by a close one
    4.) Virginia - One Warner out. A new Warner in.
    5.) Minnesota - Ciresi overtakes Franken, then beats Coleman handily. The R convention in MN backfires and turns off Minnesotans

    6.) New Mexico - Pajama Pete goes down
    7.) Oregon - A good solid progressive needs to step forward
    8.) North Carolina - Dole is done. (Moves up if Edwards is the nominee.)

    9.) Tennessee - McWherter wins a squeaker. (Move up if Gore is the nominee.)
    10.) Texas - Noriega wins if the Republicans nominate a wingnut who bashes brown people
    11.) Kansas - How late can Sebelius join the race and win?
    12.) Nebraska - Can Kerrey pull this off?
    13.) Alaska - Begich brings down Stevens
    14.) Kentucky - Payback is a bitch

    Alabama, Georgia, Idaho, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Wyoming 1 & 2,

    4:35 PM, June 29, 2007  
    Blogger Ari said...

    Apap got it right, I'd say, with the exception of NC-- that one will be a more difficult race than many out here in the blogosphere would like. And if Edwards is the nominee (which I personally hope will NOT be the case,) that won't advance the chances of a Dem takeover in NC. Remember, in '04, Edwards was on the national ticket, and could not carry his own state. The only "right candidate" in NC is Gov. Easley, and he has unequivocally taken himself out of the running.

    I wish there were a more galvanizing candidate in Maine than Tom Allen. Nothing wrong with him, but Collins is so popular, we'll need a HUGE effort to take her down. We need to tar her with her votes on Iraq and Roberts/Alito CONSTANTLY.

    And as far as Minnesota goes . . . I certainly hope Ciresi overtakes Franken. Franken is just too polarizing, and in terms of what he actually says on the stump, he's nothing to write home about! He's a run-of-the-mill Democrat, not a real leader. He may have been a good friend of Paul Wellstone's, but he is no Paul Wellstone!

    11:08 PM, June 29, 2007  
    Blogger Sage Word said...

    ...larry craig...

    Your lips to god's ears, guru. Idaho Statesman political writer Dan Popkey's taken time away from the area researching some dirty laundry of Craig's. Here's hoping he bails to avoid an ignominious end to his career.

    1:51 AM, June 30, 2007  
    Blogger Chrispy67 said...

    APAP pretty much on target, IMO

    Of the "Stars Line Up" Category, I'd say we pick up of them - and maybe all but one above.

    that puts us over 60 - and these damn cloture vote failures will be a thing of the past

    12:49 PM, June 30, 2007  

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