Senate GOP Claims They Will Gain A Stronger Majority In 2018

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Robert Donachie Capitol Hill and Health Care Reporter
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National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) Chairman Sen. Cory Gardner told his Republican colleagues Tuesday that he believes the caucus would pick up five seats if the November midterm elections were held tomorrow.

“I think come November we will continue to build our strong economy message,” Gardner told The Hill. “The benefits of the tax cuts are real. Today Democrats are advocating a massive tax increase at the Commerce Committee.”

The Colorado Republican reportedly gave his colleagues an energized speech Tuesday in which he made the prophetic statement and claimed his reasoning was based on recent polling data.

Republicans feel that any major shift in power is more likely to happen in the House than the Senate, which is somewhat corroborated in a recent Axios and Survey Monkey poll from Mar. 5.

The poll shows Democratic Sens. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Jon Tester of Montana, Joe Donnelly of Indiana and Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota as the most vulnerable Democrats in the upcoming election cycle. It also shows Democratic Sens. Claire McCaskill of Missouri falling behind Missouri GOP Attorney General Josh Hawley.

Also WATCH: Pennsylvania House Race Too Close To Call

Gardner’s statement comes at a time when a Democratic candidate in Pennsylvania defeated a Republican challenger Tuesday in a district that President Donald Trump won by 20 percentage points. The special House race featured Democratic candidate Conor Lamb and Republican candidate Rick Saccone.

House Republican leadership does not seem to be concerned about Tuesday evening’s loss, claiming that Lamb is more of a conservative candidate than a true, mainline Democrat.

Speaker of the House Paul Ryan threw cold water on the narrative that Tuesday evening’s special election in Pennsylvania is indicative of Republicans losing control of the House in the upcoming November election cycle.

“I think the candidate that is going to win this race is the candidate that ran as a pro-life, pro-gun, anti-Nancy Pelosi candidate. That is the candidate that is going to win this race. This is something that you aren’t going to see repeated because they (Pennsylvania) didn’t have a primary,” Ryan told reporters Wednesday morning. “You will have primaries in this other races and those primaries are going to bring candidates to the Left.”

“Both of these candidates ran as conservatives, I don’t think you are going to see that throughout the country,” Ryan said.

Lamb lambasted Republicans for trying repeatedly to repeal Obamacare, claimed a GOP tax bill was a “giveaway” to the rich and he also supports background checks for gun purchasers.

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