Thursday, April 26, 2018


The irony is that Republicans have a slew of races where they have good shots to win, as long as their candidates have the resources, particularly in the Senate. But a lot of them are running in states where there isn’t an extensive assemblage of deep-pocketed GOP donors. A candidate such as Kevin Cramer in North Dakota has a great shot at winning — if he’s not $3.5 million behind Heidi Heitkamp. In a normal set of circumstances, Missouri’s Claire McCaskill would be considered toast — except she’s got about $9 million more in her campaign fund than Republican state attorney general Josh Hawley. Ditto Jon Tester, who’s got $6 million more than his best-funded challenger, former state judge Russell Fagg. Even in West Virginia, Joe Manchin has about $4 million more than either Evan Jenkins or Patrick Morrissey. (Don Blankenship is self-funding, but he’s starting to sink in the polls, and let’s face it, you would rather not nominate a candidate whose résumé features, “spent a year in jail following the deadly 2010 explosion at his Upper Big Branch Mine.” More on Don Blankenship below. (As this Republican strategist joked, “Jenkins will have the easiest time winning over the votes of West Virginia Democrats . . . because he was a Democrat until about ten minutes ago.” Jenkins switched parties in 2013.) --Jim Geraghty

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