With the midterm elections only 3 days away, it is important to remember what is at stake during this election. The most obvious would be control of the Senate, as the current majority held by the Democrats is considered to be at stake. However, we must also remember that this election is about electing leaders who will make the right decisions for their constituents, and not just for their own power. With that being said, here are some of the important races in the country, and why they matter.
First we start off with the Senate. The current balance has Democrats in power with a majority of 55 to 45. Experts do not expect either side to win a large majority, but they do believe that it is most likely that the Republicans will take the Senate. However, key races for both sides include Louisiana, Georgia, Iowa, Kansas, Colorado, Alaska and North Carolina. Louisiana is the most interesting case at this time. There are currently three vying for the one open seat, incumbent Democrat Mary Landrieu, Republican Congressman Bill Cassidy and Republican Colonel Rob Maness. In the open primary to be held on November 4, Landrieu is expected to win as Maness will take votes from the frontrunner Cassidy. However, the top two will go into a runoff in December, and polls have Cassidy defeating the incumbent Senator Landrieu by around 5 points. However, some expect Maness, a Conservative, to play more of an upset roll that the mainstream media would like to anticipate. Maness has been crucial in the election so far, running as a Republican with a clear Conservative message. It is a shame Maness hasn’t been polling too well, as he would certainly be a strong Conservative voice in the Senate.
Another key race is taking place in Iowa, where there are no incumbents seeking the open seat. Republican Joni Ernst has led polling recently by only 1 point. The Democrat in the race, Bruce Braley, is still keeping up and could push ahead in the coming days. This race really is a toss-up, and either side could win, although I do predict Ernst to win that seat. In Colorado Republican Cory Gardner is attempting to defeat incumbent Senator Mark Udall. Most polls have Gardner ahead in the polls by about three points, although the media has treated this as a very close race. I would expect to see Gardner pull off the win there by 1 or 2 points. The Alaska Senate race has also been quite interesting. Although it is not gathering as much attention, the race is close there as well where Republican Dan Sullivan is attempting to unseat Democratic incumbent Mark Begich. Most polls have Sullivan up by around 3 points lately, so I predict another Republican victory here.
In Georgia and North Carolina we see two other close races with three candidates. In Georgia the race is between Republican David Perdue, Democrat Michelle Nunn and Libertarian candidate Amanda Swafford. Real Clear Politics has Perdue up by an average of 0.3 at this time, and the three way impact makes it likely we will see this race go to a runoff in January. I expect Perdue to be the victor in the end. In North Carolina we actually see a change in the tossups. Republican Thom Tillis is attempting to unseat Democrat incumbent Kay Hagan but is not faring well in the polls. Most recent polls have Hagan up by at least 1 point, and another Libertarian candidate, Sean Haugh, could take votes from Tillis. I expect Hagan to keep her seat in this race.
In Kansas we are seeing the results of a politician who has not been listening to the concerns of their people. Pat Roberts is in a closer than expected race for his seat against an Independent candidate, Greg Orman. After Roberts defeated Dr. Milton Wolf, the Conservative candidate, Roberts was leading the Democrat in the race. However, the Democrat dropped out, and most of the momentum shifted to Orman. A few polls have Orman over Roberts by less than 1 point, but I would argue this race could go either way. If so, a message could be sent to politicians like Roberts that their constituents do hold the final say in their careers, no matter how safe they think they are.
We are seeing a similar case in Kentucky with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. McConnell defeated his Republican challenger Matt Bevin with ease, but lied quite a bit in the process. This has hurt him a bit as his race against Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes has given him more of a challenge than expected. I expect McConnell to win, but many were concerned that the Republicans may have lost another politician in a leadership position this election cycle.
Two of my favorite races come out of Arkansas and Nebraska. In Arkansas, Republican Congressman Tom Cotton is leading incumbent Democrat Mark Pryor. I expect Cotton to pull off that victory and be a strong voice in the Senate. In Nebraska, College President Ben Sasse is polling way ahead of his Democratic opponent, and is expected to win easily. Sasse will certainly join Senators Ted Cruz and Mike Lee in creating a strong voice for Conservatives in the Senate.
Two other races I have been following closely come from New York and Massachusetts, both in the race for Governor. In New York, incumbent Democrat Andrew Cuomo leads Republican challenger Rob Astorino by quite a bit, but Astorino’s momentum has been strong lately. Astorino has a strong message that has been praised by many. New York is doing poorly under Cuomo, and the state needs a strong change in leadership. Astorino can provide that change, but he needs people to vote and let their voices be heard. I am hoping to see an upset in New York on Tuesday. In Massachusetts, Republican Charlie Baker is likely to defeat Democrat Attorney General Martha Coakley. This would be significant to see a Republican victory in another deep blue state.
Each of these races has been interesting to watch, and I consider them to be some of the most important in the election cycle. People have the opportunity to vote for strong Conservative choices that will defend the Constitution, and I hope they will do so. Remember to vote on November 4th, and remind others to do so as well!