Republicans Are Likely To Pick Up Senate Seats In Three Key States

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Phillip Stucky Political Reporter
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Three states have a voting history that is favorable to Republican Senate candidates, according to a historical analysis published Thursday.

President Donald Trump carried all three states — Pennsylvania, Missouri and Indiana — during the 2016 presidential election. Each state has a history of supporting Senate candidates that are the same party as the president greater than 50 percent of the time, according to political analysis blog Smart Politics.

There are 10 Senate Democrats in states that Trump carried in the 2016 presidential election, but the majority of them have a long history of supporting the party that opposes the sitting president, according to the analysis.

Indiana supported the president’s party 55.6 percent of the time since 1966, and Missouri was the most supportive, voting in favor of the president’s party 61.1 percent of the time. Pennsylvania broke even, voting in support of the president’s party exactly 50 percent of the time.

Sen. Joe Donnelly is currently serving his first term as senator of Indiana. He invested $5.6 million in the race and barely survived with 50 percent of the vote. The University of Virginia’s Center for Politics rated Donnelly’s race as a “toss-up,” indicating that the race could go either way in 2018.

Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill isn’t as vulnerable as Donnelly. She’s in her second term and defeated Republican candidate Todd Akin by 15 percentage points to earn 54.8 percent of the vote. She won her first time with 49.6 percent of the vote. She’s raised and spent over $32 million during the course of her two campaigns, according to political encyclopedia Ballotpedia. Despite her advantages, the Center for Politics also rated her race as a “toss-up.”

Sen. Bob Casey of Pennsylvania is also in danger of getting replaced by a Republican. Although the Center for Politics rated the race as “likely Democratic,” he won by a considerably smaller lead in his second term. He originally won with 58.6 percent of the vote, but his 2012 reelection campaign only earned 53 percent of the vote, according to Ballotpedia.

Democrats need to hold on to each seat they currently possess and gain an additional three or four seats in order to take control of the Senate.

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