If the elections were held today, of the ten incumbent Democrat senators running for re-election this fall, five would lose to their Republican opponents and likely two more, meaning Republicans could pick up 7 of 10 Democrat Senate seats or more.
This is according to a new Axios/Survey Monkey poll.
In the poll, Trump’s approval rating tracks strongly with Republican candidate polling. All five of the states in which the Republican is leading his Democratic opponent, President Trump’s approval rating is over 50%. The president is also polling at 54% in Ohio, where Republican challenger Jim Renacci is trailing the Democrat incumbent by five points. I look for Renacci to overcome that gap and win the seat in November.
Both Pennsylvania and Florida could be surprises. Both were strong for Trump in 2016. I see Pennsylvania as a tossup and I believe Rick Scott, with far better name recognition, exposure, track record, and a better organized and funded campaign, will win the Florida seat currently occupied by Bill Nelson.
On a side note, I expected Joe Manchin of West Virginia to have switched parties already. Not switching is hurting him terribly. Since Manchin’s election in 2012, West Virginia has gone deep red, thanks in large part to President Trump’s reviving the dying coal industry. I see no way he gets re-elected as a Democrat. If he switches parties and wins the primary, if there is one, his chances of re-election are good. Manchin, currently a moderate Democrat, bucked his party several times over the years, voting with Republicans.
I see 7 of the 10 seats swinging to the Republican side this fall, which would be very bad news for Democrats and would put the Republicans within just two seats of the magic 60-seat, filibuster-proof majority.