Thursday, August 07, 2014

Race of the Day- Delaware U.S. Senate

89 Days Until Election Day

Status: Democrat Incumbent
2012 Presidential Result: Blue State (East)

Outlook: Safe Democrat

In a year where Democrats are finding themselves playing defense throughout the virtual Senate map, Delaware is one state where they need not worry. Having first been elected four years ago in a special election, incumbent Chris Coons is poised to win a six year term in a state where Republicans are a distinct political minority.

Coons' Senate career was not even supposed to happen. He was running in 2010 as a severe underdog to moderate Republican Congressman Mike Castle, who had held virtually every other elected position in the state. Castle was expected to serve four years in the Senate and then many believed he would step aside and the seat would go to State Attorney General Beau Biden, who could then claim the seat his father Joe held for decades. However, the plans of Castle and the Bidens were soon thwarted when Castle was shocked in a primary to Tea Party backed political commentator Christine O'Donnell. With that primary result, went away what was an almost certain GOP Senate pickup and O'Donnell generated almost as many headlines as votes, as among other things, she would run an ad proclaiming that she was not a witch.

With Castle's political career having come to an end, there is really not anybody else in the Delaware GOP ready to step up and give Coons a contest. Some even were resigned to O'Donnell making another bid for the Senate, but she decided to take a pass this time, in part due to family concerns. For months, it looked like Coons may even be reelected without Republican opposition. Recently though, two GOP candidates did file and will face off in a September primary. That contest will surely get a lot less attention as compared to what happened in 2010, but the expected winner of the nomination is Kevin Wade, a businessman, who has made a couple recent runs for federal office, including his stint as the party's sacrificial Senate nominee in 2012.  He is now back for what is likely to feel like a re-run, but all things considered, he will probably fare a bit better against Coons in a midterm than he did against the more established Delaware Senior Senator in a Presidential year.

Wade, if nominated, will once again do little to make news or embarrass anybody this year, but it is pretty much a lost cause in a state where Republicans will need to continue the rebuilding process before they are likely to win a statewide federal race again.

Wade campaign link:

Senate races predicted thus far: 2 D (1 Safe, 1 Tossup), 3 R (1 Safe, 1 Leans, 1 Tossup)
Overall predicted thus far: 36 D, 33 R (net Republican gain of 2)


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