The Midterms Minute is a look at the candidates and races in battleground districts that you need to know about, shout about and support to make the biggest impact possible in the election on November 6th.
As of the release date of episode #1218, we are 25 days out from election day. That’s less than 4 weeks to help candidates campaign. That’s just 4 weekends of volunteering. It’s October and state voter registration deadlines are quickly passing, so if you are still not registered, or know someone who is putting it off, make that your first priority.
Because we’re running short on time, for the next few weeks we are only going to highlight on air the battleground races that are considered toss ups. However, we will still provide information for ALL of the battleground races in the show notes and at The Midterms Minute H.Q..
Today, we’re just going to focus on the flippable, toss up, battleground races for the Senate that we haven’t covered yet. As a quick overview, 35 of the 100 Senate seats are up this November, including two special elections. Democrats are defending 26 seats, 10 of which are in states Trump won. They must retain all 10 of those Senate seats and pick up at least 2 more to take the Senate and though do-able, it’s not going to be easy.
ARIZONA: We’ll start with Arizona, where Republican Jeff Flake’s Senate seat is open and entirely in play for Democrats. In fact, it might be Democrat’s best shot at picking up a seat. Since Flake decided to screw over the entire country for decades by voting for Kavanaugh before leaving congress, it’ll feel extra good to flip his vacated Senate seat. Arizona’s ninth district Democratic Representative Kyrsten Sinema is facing Arizona’s 2nd district Republican Representative Martha McSally. McSally is trying to paint Sinema as anti-military because she participated in anti-war protests after nine eleven. As of early September, Sinema has a slight lead in the majority of polls, but this race is still a toss up and a win requires Democratic latino voters to turn out in full force.
NEVADA: Next-door in Nevada, Republican incumbent Senator Dean Heller is facing a challenge from Democratic Representative Jacky Rosen. This seat is in play because Nevada has the one Senate seat Republicans are trying to defend in a state Clinton won. The polls currently show Heller and Rosen tied, with Rosen leading within the margin of error. Trump is backing Heller and even held a rally for him last month in Las Vegas, while Heller tries to frame himself as very bipartisan. Rosen has nicknamed Heller “Senator Spineless” and called him out for cracking under GOP party pressure and voting for the Obamacare repeal bill. Heller also voted for Kavanaugh, and Rosen - a woman - is not about to let any voter forget that. The race is rated a toss up.
TENNESSEE: After voting for Kavanaugh and pretty much everything else on Trump’s agenda, Tennessee Senator Bob Corker is finally going away. In this open seat race, former Democratic Governor Phil Bredesen is facing horror show Republican Representative Marsha Blackburn. The outside money flowing in has been gigantic, with Blackburn getting the majority. We don’t have time to highlight all the terrible things Blackburn has said and done while in the House, so I think all we have to say is that she is aligned with Trump on absolutely every thing and might like the idea of a border wall even more than he does. Bredesen is down in about half the polls and The Cook Political Report has rated this race a toss up.
TEXAS: Moving on now to Texas, where we finally have a real shot at not having to look at or listen to Ted Cruz anymore. Wouldn’t that be nice? Democratic Representative Beto O’Rourke is a strong challenger who has been able to raise significant money and grab the national spotlight. Despite that though, O’Rourke is down in the latest polls by 5 to 9 percentage points. Cruz has been grasping at straws to try to damage O’Rourke’s image. His latest attempt was twisting O’Rourke’s completely valid criticisms of our criminal justice system to call him “divisive and dangerous.” But this is still a toss up race.
Finally, for anyone who is already registered to vote or thinks they are, please, please, please take a few seconds today to confirm your registration. Voter purging is happening across the country and the sooner you know there is an issue, the better your chance of getting it corrected before election day. Visit HeadCount.org to quickly be directed to your state’s specific website to confirm your voter registration. If there is a problem, contact 866-OUR-VOTE to report the problem and get guidance ASAP.
So, if making the Blue Wave a reality in November is important to you, be sure to hit the share buttons to spread the word about supporting Democrats in battleground races across the country via social media so that others in your network can spread the word too.
THE MIDTERMS MINUTE
REGISTER TO VOTE: RocktheVote.org/register-to-vote/
CONFIRM VOTER REGISTRATION: HeadCount.org/verify-voter-registration/
CHECK VOTING DATES & POLICIES: RocktheVote.org/voting-information/
Get Involved/Resources: THE MIDTERMS MINUTE H.Q.
FLIPPABLE TOSS UP BATTLEGROUND SENATE SEATS
AZ-Sen: Kyrsten Sinema (D)
NV-Sen: Jacky Rosen (D)
TN-Sen: Phil Bredesen (D)
TX-Sen: Beto O'Rourke (D)
Posted October 12th, 2018; Researched & Written by Best of the Left Communications Director, Amanda Hoffman
Hear the segment in the context of Best of the Left Edition #1218: Kavanaugh forced upon America (Supreme Court)