Amid 2012 Hopefuls' Career Implosions, Future Looks Bleak for GOP

News & Politics

Two things have happened recently to drive home the point that the Republican Party is in massive decline. The Democratic Caucus in the U.S. Senate reached sixty members and we saw three potential 2012 GOP presidential careers' unexpectedly implode. Where are they going from here?

The GOP might regain some momentum by winning the governor's races this November in either/both New Jersey and Virginia, but their prospects of picking up seats in the 2010 Senate elections look exceedingly bleak. The Democrats have very strong candidates running in Missouri, Ohio, Kentucky, and New Hampshire in what should all be open seats. The Republicans will have to stage upset victories in all four of those seats and find a way to win elections in Delaware, Colorado, or Connecticut to gain any ground. And most of the emerging races are on Republican ground. Texas could become a competitive seat once Kay Bailey Hutchison resigns to run for governor. It remains to be seen if Charlie Crist will prevail in Florida's closed GOP primary. Sen. Richard Burr of North Carolina is polling terribly and could become vulnerable if the Democrats find a strong challenger. Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana could have difficulty weathering his diaper-wearing visits to the Cat House if Rep. Charlie Melanchon gets in the race.

The Dems have a little housecleaning to do. They will have contentious primaries in Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and New York. But they should be favored to win all of those races. My best guess is that the Democrats will pick up a net of four to six seats, giving them 64-66 senate seats for the 112th Congress.

The House is another matter.

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