November 5, 2008

THANKS, MAVERICK/SARAH:

Nine races still too close to call (ANDY BARR | 11/5/08, Politico)

Senate races in Minnesota, Alaska and Oregon may be headed toward recounts. Georgia’s Senate race, meanwhile, is likely headed toward a runoff.

While Democrats picked up five seats Tuesday night — falling four short of the 60 seats needed for a filibuster-resistant majority — Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee spokesman Matthew Miller said the committee is still focused on the potential pickup opportunities remaining on the board. [...]

National Republican Senatorial Committee spokeswoman Rebecca Fisher seemed upbeat about Tuesday’s results, pointing out “we consider it a win if they didn’t get to 60.”

“I don’t think anybody expected us to hold where we held,” Fisher added.


Gordon Smith is apparently toast, but they hold the others, amazingly. John McCain was the only Republican candidate this year who could have held it this close and but for a few bad breaks would have won.

MORE:
For the Republicans, It Could Have Been Worse (Michael Grunwald, Nov. 05, 2008, TIME)

Looking back at our races to watch, just about all the conservative Republicans in traditionally red territory held seats needed by the GOP to avoid a blowout: Senators Roger Wicker in Mississippi, Mitch McConnell in Kentucky and, probably, Saxby Chambliss in Georgia, along with House members John Shadegg in Arizona, Cynthia Lummis in Wyoming and the Diaz-Balart brothers in Florida. It looks like graft-convicted Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska will somehow retain his seat long enough to get expelled, and his ethically and temperamentally challenged porkmate, Don Young, was reelected as well; Michelle Bachmann of Minnesota survived her McCarthyite rant on Hardball, and Ohio's similarly obnoxious Jean Schmidt once again avoided a well-deserved early retirement. Republicans even ousted four first-term Democrats before they could get entrenched in deep-red districts — not only the clearly doomed Casanova Tim Mahoney of Florida, but Nancy Boyda of Kansas, Dan Cazayoux of Louisiana and Nick Lampson of Texas. (See the Top 10 video campaign moments.)

Democrats did knock off a few fire-breathing right-wing targets: wacky Bill Sali of Idaho, who protested a minimum-wage hike by introducing a bill to repeal the law of gravity; Marilyn Musgrave of Colorado, who once declared gay marriage the greatest threat to America; Tom Feeney of Florida, an escapee from the Abramoff scandal; and Elizabeth Dole of North Carolina, who ran ads calling her Christian opponent "godless." They also defeated some impressive Republicans who could have helped lead the party out of the wilderness, like moderate Congressman Christopher Shays of Connecticut, conservative Senator John Sununu of New Hampshire, and pragmatic Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory, who had hoped to swim upstream into the governor's office. (See pictures of 60 years of election night drama.)

Still, it could have been worse.

Posted by Orrin Judd at November 5, 2008 10:33 PM
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