Senate News & Analysis

Ratings Update: Tennessee Senate Remains Solid R for Now

December 7, 2017 · 1:14 PM EST

Democrats made a big splash this week with the entry of former Gov. Phil Bredesen into the Tennessee Senate race, but the party still has an uphill battle in a state President Donald Trump won convincingly, and it’s not even clear Bredesen gives Democrats the best chance of winning.

Ratings Change: Franken’s Minnesota Seat Starts as Likely for Democrats

December 7, 2017 · 12:30 PM EST

Sen. Al Franken’s resignation puts another Democratic seat into the 2018 mix, but it’s still unclear whether his departure provides Republicans with a legitimate takeover opportunity.

In order to handicap a race, it’s helpful to know where the contest will take place and who is running. In this case, we…

Missouri Senate: Claire’s Courtship of Trump Voters

by Leah Askarinam December 1, 2017 · 2:30 PM EST

If Democrats want to have any shot at winning a Senate majority in 2018, Sen. Claire McCaskill likely needs to win re-election—a tall task, given that Missouri voted for President Donald Trump by nearly 20 points. 

McCaskill is one of 10 Democratic senators running for re-election in states that Trump…

Alabama Senate Special: Moore or Less a Toss-Up

by Nathan L. Gonzales December 1, 2017 · 2:29 PM EST

With 10 days to go before the Dec. 12 Alabama Senate special election, anyone who tells you they are certain who will win either is lying to you or just misinformed. 

Limited public polling shows Republican Roy Moore with a narrow advantage over Democrat Doug Jones in spite of multiple…

Good Candidate, Bad Candidate … Who Knows?

by Nathaniel Rakich November 27, 2017 · 11:35 AM EST

Rep. Kyrsten Sinema is “probably the most confident, strongest Democrat to run for the U.S. Senate since I moved to Arizona in 1998,” trumpeted an Arizona State political science professor. Across the country, the party is “notably underwhelmed” by the three Democrats running against Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker. Republicans…

Ratings Change: Alabama Senate Moves to Toss-up

November 14, 2017 · 4:34 PM EST

Roy Moore is testing a once-hypothetical question: What would it take for a Democrat to win a statewide race in Alabama?

Under normal circumstances, Alabama would elect a Republican to Senate, even a candidate as polarizing as Moore. But the situation changed when The Washington Post reported allegations of…

Please Don’t Call It a Push Poll: Transgender Edition

by Nathan L. Gonzales November 7, 2017 · 4:23 PM EST

Danica Roem and Bob Marshall are facing off in an unusually high-profile race for the Virginia House of Delegates — Roem, a transgender Democrat, is challenging Marshall, a conservative Republican. The race reached a new level in the final weeks when allegations of a so-called push poll came to light.

Why You Should Focus on Independents from Now to the Midterms

by Stuart Rothenberg November 1, 2017 · 9:03 AM EDT

In my last column, I wrote about Donald Trump’s job approval ratings among Republicans, Democrats and Independents, noting that his standing among all groups is important. But my primary focus for 2018 should be on Independents, who are likely to be the canary in the coal mine for the…

Arizona Senate: Flake Retires But Race Still a Toss-Up

October 27, 2017 · 2:26 PM EDT

Sen. Jeff Flake’s announcement shouldn’t have come as a surprise to Inside Elections readers, considering we mentioned the scenario in our Sept. 15 issue.

Rarely does a party prefer an open seat over losing an incumbent. But Flake’s retirement may help the GOP hold his Arizona seat, giving Republicans an…

Comparing Trump’s Job Ratings to Obama’s

by Stuart Rothenberg October 26, 2017 · 2:04 PM EDT

Nine months into their respective terms, President Donald Trump’s job approval rating is substantially worse than Barack Obama’s was among both partisan groups and Independents, according to Gallup polls.

Trump’s average job approval numbers for the week of October 9 stood at 79 percent among Republicans, 8 percent among…