The Key Senate Races of 2020
With all the uncertainty about the presidential election and the effort to win back the House of Representatives, it is absolutely vital to preserve Republican control of the Senate. RJC members often ask for information about the key races and candidates, so I'm excited to share some of my observations about the battle for the Senate with you in the weeks ahead.
The class of Senators seeking reelection now were the GOP's majority-makers in 2014. Now, six years later, Democrats' top targets are Senators who flipped previously Democrat seats and made Mitch McConnell the Senate Majority Leader: Cory Gardner of Colorado, Joni Ernst of Iowa, Thom Tillis of North Carolina, and Steve Daines of Montana.
Democrats are also pulling out all the stops to defeat Senator Martha McSally in a special election to fill the last two years of the late Senator John McCain's term in Arizona. And they're once again targeting Susan Collins. My former colleague from Maine is one of the most effective Senators in either party, but it's always a challenging state for the GOP.
Then there are the red states where Democrats will try to sneak up on us. Regardless of the hype, I'm confident that Majority Leader McConnell of Kentucky, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, John Cornyn of Texas, and Dan Sullivan of Alaska will be just fine if Republicans are vigilant and generous with support for these proven leaders. I'm also confident that a focused GOP effort in Georgia will secure victory in the special election to fill the last two years of since-retired Senator Johnny Isakson’s term and in Senator David Perdue's reelection bid.
Because the GOP did so well in 2014, there are not many offense opportunities this year, but we will reclaim the Alabama seat liberal Democrat Doug Jones won in a 2017 special election and rising star John James has a real chance to unseat little-known incumbent Gary Peters in Michigan.
Of course, not every Senator is seeking reelection. Voters in Wyoming, Kansas, and Tennessee will pick new Senators, likely all Republicans. The new Senator from New Mexico is likely to be a Democrat.
Bottom line: control of the Senate is up for grabs, and my former colleagues are counting on support from Republican activists like you. We've got the high-quality candidates, but it will be all hands on deck to ensure they have the necessary resources to see the effort through to victory.
Please watch this space for more in-depth analysis on individual races in the weeks and months ahead. If you’d like to share your thoughts with me on any of these races, please email me at NColeman@RJCHQ.org.