With two weeks to go until the 2014 United States midterm elections — although the advent of extended voting makes that a quasi-fictional deadline — it would appear to be curtains for the Democratic majority in the Senate. Although there is some movement their way in Republican seats, some of which is due to ‘”independents” — i.e. Republicans who think the party is now too crazy for them — the key seats that the Democrats need to hold appear lost, from a combination of immense amounts of right-wing money and poor campaigning by the Dems themselves.
Two hitherto neck-and-neck races appear to be widening in favour of the GOP, with Joni Ernst pulling ahead by around 2.5% in Iowa, and Cory Gardner opening up a 4.4% lead in Colorado. Three other Democratic Senate seats are regarded as gone — in Montana, a 16% gap has opened up after the first Democratic candidate withdrew in the wake of a plagiarism scandal, and in Arkansas, one of the last Southern red states (i.e. Republican voting in presidential polls) with a Democratic Senator, Mark Pryor is trailing Tom Cotton by 5.5%. In West Virginia, held for decades by John Rockefeller, a Democrat with a Republican name, the GOP has turned it from competitive seat into a lead of 6%.