Nate Silver calls Byron Dorgan (D-ND) the most valuable Democratic senator and news of his retirement "un-spinnably bad news for the Democrats." Chris Dodd (D-CT) and Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter are also out. Marc analyzes:
On balance, Republicans today gained a foothold in North Dakota, and Democrats increased their likelihood of keeping their Senate seat in Connecticut. Privately, senior White House officials have communicated to Dodd their belief that his position was untenable...Botton line: from a micro perspective, the GOP gains nothing from today. From a macro perspective, anytime three major Democratic party figures retire...ain't good for that party.