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Refusing to Take the Senate Seriously

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Even if Donald Trump is defeated, the next Democratic president is likely to be in a position of not being able to pass major federal legislation or get any federal judges confirmed, not to match be subjected to countless frivolous investigations. And prominent younger Democrats in marginal states just don’t seem to care:

Even with wins in Colorado and Maine, Team Blue would have only netted one seat, which means they’d have to flip two in light-red territory. CNN’s Harry Enten explains why that’s unlikely:

Beyond [Colorado and Maine], the Democratic pickup opportunities slim dramatically. Of the other 20 Republican-held seats up for election, 16 of them are in states that were 10 points or more Republican than the nation as a whole in a weighted average of the last two presidential elections. None of these races look competitive at this time.

The other four have leaned 5 to 10 points more Republican than the nation in a weighted average of the last two presidential elections: Arizona (Martha McSally), Georgia (David Perdue), Iowa (Joni Ernst) and North Carolina (Thom Tillis).

… Elected Republican incumbents are, at this point, expected to be running for all these seats, except for Arizona. Generally, incumbents tend to do better than non-incumbents. Even if the 2018 political environment were in effect (i.e. one where they won the national House vote by high single digits), the lean of each state in the 2018 House elections suggests that only Arizona (because McSally wasn’t elected) would go to the Democrats.

In other words, even if Democrats win the national popular vote in a 2018-esque landslide, chances are they’ll come up at least one seat short. And did I mention that the party’s best prospective Senate candidates in Georgia, and the “reach” states of Texas and Montana, have all ostensibly decided to launch far-fetched presidential campaigns, instead? Or that Joe Manchin is seriously considering resigning his seat to run for governor in West Virginia, in which case, Democrats will effectively need to flip five seats after they (almost certainly) forfeit the Mountain State and Alabama?

Bullock apparently passing up a very winnable Senate seat for a jerkoff presidential campaign is particularly infuriating.

Another guy who has zero shot of passing Joe Biden in the “moderate white guy” lane has some thoughts:

“As a senator, most senators don’t — you don’t become even the vice chair of a reasonably important committee until your third term,” Hickenlooper said. “I have not talked to [Schumer] yet, but I, back and forth, have said, ‘Yes, I will sit down; I’d be happy to talk to you.’ But by the time I got to my third term, I’d be eighty.”

First of all, the idea that you have to be a committee chair to have power in the Senate is absolutely bonkers. Being a marginal Senate vote gives you almost as much ability to influence legislation as the president! Ben Nelson got to write substantial parts of the ACA to his specifications as a nothing two-termer! In any case, you know what’s a far less powerful position than being a United States Senator? Dropping our of the presidential race in November because you don’t want to finish 16th in Iowa, which is where Hickenlooper’s transparently presidential hopeless campaign is headed. But ego and belief in the king-like powers of the presidency are apparently both powerful drugs.

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