U.S. Senate Battleground Review

As we continue to prepare for the 2012 elections, I wanted to give you an update on the national U.S. Senate battleground.  As you may know, there are major opportunities for the GOP – possibly building our Senate numbers as high as 60 seats.  Here’s the breakdown:

The U.S. Senate’s current partisan composition is:

–       51 Democrats

–       47 Republicans

–       2 Independents


33 seats are up for re-election, including:

–       21 seats currently held by Democrats

–       10 seats currently held by Republicans

–       2 seats currently held by Independents


Of those Republican seats up for re-election, only 2 are considered possible battlegrounds:

–       Scott Brown – Massachusetts

–       Dean Heller – Nevada


Of those Democratic seats up for re-election, at least 9 are considered possible battlegrounds:

–       Daniel Akaka (retiring) – Hawaii

–       Kent Conrad (retiring) – North Dakota

–       Claire McCaskill – Missouri

–       Jon Tester – Montana

–       Jim Webb (retiring) – Virginia

–       Jeff Bingaman (retiring) – New Mexico

–       Herb Kohl (retiring) – Wisconsin

–       Bill Nelson – Florida

–       Sherrod Brown – Ohio


Then there are two Independents, one of whom is retiring and both of whom could find their seats in play in a good year:

–       Joe Lieberman (retiring) – Connecticut

–       Bernie Sanders – Vermont


That doesn’t even mention what’s happening here in California, where 20-year incumbent Dianne Feinstein’s approval rating is the lowest in her career, and according to the last Field Poll, more Californians want her replaced than want her re-elected.


The U.S. Senate battleground demonstrates the huge challenges facing Democrats in 2012.  With America sitting at this important crossroads, we have the opportunity to win the White House, hold our majority in the House of Representatives, and take a commanding majority in the U.S. Senate.  I’ll keep you posted as events unfold.

Shawn Steel

RNC National Committeeman

California Republican Party


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