If nothing else, the past week brought home the importance of keeping the Senate under Republican control for the next two years. Paul Mirengoff usually takes the time to sort the races out for us, but we have let the task go this year. Now is the time. Last night John took up Minnesota’s Karin Housley v. Tina Smith race in the post nearby.
Below is my unscientific selection of the five best takeaway opportunities in races where money is most needed. (I omit Rick Scott because he should not be short of resources in his race against Bill Nelson in Florida.) I will separately address top Republican seats to be defended. I include my own telegraphic notes and a link to the official campaign site in each case so that readers can contribute if they feel so inspired.
Top takeaway opportunities:
• Josh Hawley v. Claire McCaskill.
A former law clerk to Chief Justice John Roberts, Josh is the incumbent Missouri attorney general. I met Josh Hawley this past January and heard him make his pitch. He is a brilliant young conservative and one of the most impressive politicians I have met. Retire Claire McCaskill!
Most recent poll has Hawley +2. RCP aggregation here.
Please contribute to Josh Hawley here.
• Kevin Cramer v. Heidi Heitkamp.
Rep. Cramer was elected to North Dakota’s at-large seat in Congress six years ago in the same election that Heitkamp narrowly won. He has been reelected by huge margins in each subsequent election. President Trump recruited him to run against Heitkamp. I met him earlier this year and wrote about this race at some length in “Not high on Heitkamp.” Heidi Heitkamp — what a phony.
Most recent poll has Cramer +4. RCP aggregation here.
Please contribute to Kevin Cramer here.
• Mike Braun v. Joe Donnelly.
Running in a conservative state, Donnelly impersonates an average Indianan. Mike Braun is a successful and conservative businessman. What’s not to like? This is a winnable race.
Most recent poll has Braun +2. RCP aggregation here.
Please contribute to Mike Braun here.
• Patrick Morrissey v. Joe Manchin.
In the world of phony Democratic moderates, Joe Manchin takes the cake. West Virginia is Trump country and deserves better. Patrick Morrissey is the incumbent attorney general, a serious and likable man.
Most recent poll (of registered voters) has Manchin +12, but he has not made the sale. Even in that poll he is lodged at 45 percent. He is not sitting pretty. RCP aggregation here.
Please contribute to Patrick Morrissey here.
• Matt Rosendale v. Jon Tester.
Matt Rosendale is the incumbent Montana state auditor. Jon Tester plays the part of an independent voice for Montana but is a reliable party-line vote for Chuck Schumer. This is a difficult but winnable race.
Most recent poll has Tester +4 and just under 50 percent. RCP aggregation here.
Please contribute to Matt Rosendale here.