Could the GOP Take Control of the Senate This Fall?

Some Dems aren't ruling it out

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For months, Democrats have worried that the GOP might gain control of the House come November. The Senate, however, was considered safe. Until now. According to the Wall Street Journal, Democrats are openly acknowledging that Republicans could take the upper chamber. "I think there is definitely a chance" said Gary Nordlinger, a Democratic strategist Washington speaking with the Journal. "I wouldn't call it a probability, but there is certainly a chance." Could Republicans really mount this kind of comeback?

  • Dems Should Take This Seriously, writes Mark Halperin at Time: "Losing control of the Senate is not out of the question... Obama's alienation of independents and white voters, along with the enthusiasm gap between the right and the left, means that Republicans are on a trajectory to pick up massive numbers of House and Senate seats, perhaps even to regain control of Congress."

  • I Don't Buy It, writes Josh Green at The Atlantic: "One reason for my reluctance to fully embrace the Armageddon-for-Democrats scenario has to do with the rhythms of how the media cover the two parties, and how I expected them, at some point, to change. When a single party holds power, that party appropriately tends to be the focus of attention. But when the possibility that the other party might take over becomes real--and we're certainly at that point--the attention starts to shift. This always struck me as a potential problem. I don't really imagine that Republicans plan to repeal health care or the new financial regulations (although, who knows?). But they haven't offered up much in the way of a compelling alternative agenda."

If Democrats are going to run on a “What Social Security problem?” platform at a time when voters are increasingly serious and unwilling to accept political spin, they may be in more trouble than we imagined.

But the wild card may be Republicans’ own untested candidates (Rand Paul and Sharon Angle, for example). They will have to make sure they hold their own seats (Ohio is a tough race) and hope voters are finally immune to the kinds of tricks (George Bush! Abortion will be illegal!) that have gotten rather weak Democratic candidates through past races.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.