My Senate forecast- that Republicans will pick up 8 Senate seats – assumes that the Republican Ken Buck will squeak by incumbent Democrat Michael Bennet in Colorado, but I have been upfront in acknowledging that this race can tip either way. In the end, I went with Buck because I think the national fundamentals favor the Republican.
The latest word I’m receiving from people working in that state indicates the race is even closer than I anticipated. Evidently the DNC analysis of early voting returns, based on their forecast model and historical data, is projecting that Bennet will win a nail biter, 50.04%-49.96%, over Buck. Put another way, and I quote, “That equates to a difference of less than 1000 votes across the state, or less than one vote per precinct.”
What does this mean? Obviously, turnout is crucial to determining the winner – and winning Colorado is essential if Republicans are going to take the Senate. As of now, this is the closest Senate race in the nation. Even more importantly, however, it suggests there will almost surely be a recount in Colorado – with all the excitement that entails. Does anyone remember the Franken-Coleman debacle in Minnesota’s Senate race? That took weeks to resolve. It’s going to be deja vu all over again.
Now, to really make things exciting, let’s extend that recount scenario to the Nevada, Illinois and Washington Senate races. The midterm elections could extend into December! I love politics!
Which reminds me: I’ll be at the Grille tomorrow night, cohosting the Election Night extravaganza with my colleague Bert Johnson. As always, we’ll spend the night parsing the returns, mocking the media coverage, and saying “We told you so”. There is a cash bar in case you are wondering what you can do for me. Festivities begin at 8.
I’ll also be live blogging the event – in 2008 we set a record for audience participation on the blog that stood until Scott Brown night in Massachusetts. Let’s break that record tomorrow night – log in to the Presidential Power site, and send in your comments.
In the interim, as most of you have grown accustomed to during election season, I’ll be emailing frequent blog post notices updating the midterm scene throughout today and tomorrow as sources begin reporting in.