Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Rhode Island U.S. Senate- Race of the Day

42 Days Until Election Day

Rhode Island U.S. Senate

Status: Democrat Incumbent
2016 Presidential Result: Blue State (East)

Outlook: Safe Democrat

As a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Democrat Sheldon Whitehouse has the chance to say something this coming Thursday during the special Brett Kavanaugh hearing, in which an accuser may or may not show up, then he will in the context of a pro-forma reelection campaign.

Seeking a third term, the patrician Whitehouse, who of course has a politically interesting surname, said recently that if Democrats "get gavels" they will investigate why Republicans are unwilling to believe a totally unsubstantiated allegation from 36 years ago involving teenagers. Throughout his time in the Senate, Whitehouse has always been counted on as a sharp-tongued partisan. The fact that he hails from a very liberal state certainly has helped his ability to win politically at home.

In 2006, he was one of several Democrats to unseat GOP incumbents. In this case, he defeated Lincoln Chafee, who was the most left-leaning Republican in the Senate. Coincidentally, both of their fathers, who would go on to prominent careers in government, were roommates at Yale University. The Senator's reelection in 2012 was no sweat for him, and 2016 looks to be the same situation. There was talk that Chafee, who has since formally joined the Democrats, after a stint as Governor, and including brief 2016 Presidential bid, might primary his old rival (and even run to his left), but that did not happen. The September primary did however see a little known liberal activist named Patricia Fontes, take 23 percent against Whitehouse.

The GOP bench in Rhode Island is pretty thin. A young State Representative did enter the race, but failed to win the party endorsement against former state Supreme Court Justice Robert Flanders, and then stepped aside. In the primary, Flanders took 88 percent against his sole opponent, Florida based businessman Rocky de la Fuente, who was seemingly running for the Senate in every state of the Union this year.

Flanders is stressing his middle-class roots as the opponent to Whitehouse, and is polling in the low to mid 30's. It's possible he will finish with a percentage total in the 40s, but there is no indication that this race will be competitive.

U.S. Senate races predicted thus far: 
19 D (9 Safe, 5 Likely, 2 Leans, 3 Tossup)
  7 R (2 Safe, 1 Likely, 4 Tossup)

Total with predictions thus far:
42 D (23 holdovers, 9 Safe, 5 Likely, 2 Leans, 3 Tossup)
49 R (42 holdovers, 2 Safe, 1 Likely, 4 Tossup)


At 2:59 PM, Blogger Steve Boudreaux said...

Whitehouse is ANNOYING.


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