Senate Watch 2020

New Senate 2020 Polls Look Promising For Democrats

Will it affect the chamber’s majority come November?

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This November, all eyes will be on the U.S. Senate, where both parties are fighting to claim majority leadership. In Senate Watch 2020, we'll bring you regular updates, including races to watch, expert predictions, and interviews with the key players. This week, two races switched from "Lean GOP" to "Toss-up."

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Republicans currently hold a three-seat majority in the chamber, which they're hoping to defend come November. There are multiple toss-up races on the horizon, and last week, Politico labeled two additional states "toss-ups": Iowa and Montana.

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They're in good company, joining tight races in the following states:

  1. Arizona
  2. Alabama
  3. Colorado
  4. Maine
  5. North Carolina

Do analysts think Republicans or Democrats will claim majority?

“The race for Senate control is now close to a coin flip.” — Steven Shepard, Politico

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In Iowa, Theresa Greenfield (D) is currently leading Sen. Joni Ernst (R) by two points, according to a new poll from GQR Research. Ernst, the early favorite, is finishing her first senate term, following service in the state legislature and the Iowa Army National Guard. She's been criticized for voting with Trump's agenda more than 90% of the time.

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Greenfield, her challenger, is a real estate developer in Des Moines and a former urban planner, who's made protecting social safety nets like Social Security a centerpiece of her platform.

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In Montana, it's the battle of the Steves. Governor Steve Bullock (D) is now leading Sen. Steve Daines (R) by two points, according to new polling from Public Policy Polling. Daines is finishing his first senate term, having previously worked at a software company and Procter & Gamble. Earlier this month, he gained criticism in his opposition to D.C. statehood.

"It’s important for senators and congressmen, in fact, most of the time, [to] get out of this city and go out to where the real people are at across the country and ask them what they think.”

Sen. Steve Daines (R-Mont.), arguing against D.C. statehood

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Bullock, his challenger, has been the Democratic governor of Montana since 2013. After an unsuccessful bid for president, he announced his senate run in March. It'll be an uphill battle, since President Trump won Montana by 20 points in 2016. He's prioritizing campaign finance reform, preserving public land, and net neutrality.

That's all for now! Tune in for the next round of Senate Watch 2020.

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