Democrats favored to take control of US Senate
With public disapproval of President Donald Trump weighing on Republicans across the country, voters will decide whether to end the political careers of embattled Republican senators including Trump ally Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and moderate Susan Collins of Maine among others.
In total, 12 Republican-held seats and two Democratic-held seats are in play, based on a Reuters analysis of three nonpartisan U.S. elections forecasters – the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia, the Cook Political Report and Inside Elections.
“There are dogfights all over the country,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, the top Republican in Congress, said at a campaign stop. He described the possibility of Republicans holding onto the Senate majority as a “50-50 proposition.”
Those odds appear optimistic, based on the three forecasters.
They forecast that Democrats could emerge with as many as 55 of the Senate’s 100 seats, giving them a majority for the first time in a decade in both the Senate and the 435-seat House of Representatives, where they are expected to maintain control.
Though likely to fall short of a 60-vote filibuster-proof majority, Democratic Senate control would greatly aid a Biden legislative agenda or help stymie a second Trump term.
To win the majority, Democrats need to pick up only three Republican seats if Biden is elected president and Senator Kamala Harris wields the tie-breaking Senate vote as vice president. Republicans now hold a 53-47 seat majority.
Republican Senator Cory Gardner of Colorado is seen as the most vulnerable among over half a dozen first-term party incumbents in Alaska, Arizona, Georgia, Iowa, Montana and North Carolina. Democrats Doug Jones and Gary Peters are also on defense in Alabama and Michigan, respectively.