The PJ Tatler

Crystal Ball Says GOP Picks Up 8 in the Senate

Larry Sabato’s final Crystal Ball mid-term prediction says that tonight will be a good to great night for the Republicans.


He predicts that Louisiana goes to a runoff, and that Georgia may also, but that both end up in the GOP column. Recent polls agree, though the dynamics of a run-off make those races dicey to predict now. The runoffs will be on different dates, which could turn them into national races, or at least give them both high national attention, and therefore spending — especially if control of the Senate is still up for grabs based on those races’ results. Which is possible.

If Sabato is right and those two seats stay undecided tonight, then the GOP still will be assured of taking control of the Senate in January. But there is one more wrinkle, at least — Alaska. Given the size of the state and the difficulty of just moving around it this time of year, it could be a week or two before we have a result there.

Even though I blanked the likely Louisiana overtime election, I’m sticking to my call that the GOP picks up 7. But I’m feeling cranky about that. The Democrats’ ground game overperformed in 2012 and could do that again. There have been numerous reports — too many to ignore — of voting machines going rogue and voting Democrat when voters were trying to vote Republican. It’s feeling like the Republicans have gotten into the third quarter with a lead, but they have a weak defense. Will it hold up? We’ll see.