Midterm Updates: Another Democrat Bites the Dust?

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    Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

As gridlock continues to wear away at the patience of a nation, Congressional midterms wage on — and Democrats are looking at what could be a very rough fallout in the Senate. Just how rough depends on who you ask, but even the more moderate estimates of disaster think it likely that Republicans have the edge.

FiveThirtyEight made its own forecast for the Senate fallout, mixing together a combination of poll averages, bias considerations, past state partisanship trends, and candidate qualifications. In general, projections from the data group are very close to what an average of polls would show, with the exception of Kentucky, Georgia, and Arkansas, which they tilt toward the GOP far more than the polls, believing that polling for the Democratic candidates in said states has been inflated by outside factors that are likely to change on election day.

Even remaining in keeping with average poll findings, Democrats are looking at a four seat loss, in Alaska, Louisiana, Montana, and West Virginia, with the likely loss of South Dakota, and the probably gain of Georgia. This equals out to a fifty-one to forty-nine split, and averaged probabilities end up with a fifty-seat tie, with Vice President Joe Biden as tie breaker. Taking into account FiveThirtyEight’s less hopeful view of Kentucky, Georgia, and Arkansas, and the majority may well be lost, especially given that nine races considered toss-ups gave Democrats very tight odds — between 42 and 62 percent — of winning. Comparatively, The Washington Post tends to be a little less optimistic, while The New York Times has a more positive outlook for Democrats.

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