Tags: GOP | Senate | seats | midterms

Larry Sabato: GOP has 50-50 Chance at Controlling Senate in November

Thursday, 23 Jan 2014 11:33 PM

By Greg Richter

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Republicans will definitely pick up seats in the Senate in November's midterm elections, says political scientist Larry Sabato, with the chances of gaining control of the body at 50-50.

Democrats currently control the Senate by a 55-45 margin, which means Republicans need to win six seats in November to take control. The GOP already has a majority in the House of Representatives.

Appearing Thursday on Fox News Channel's "The Kelly File," Sabato said he considers West Virginia and South Dakota locks for Republicans, while they have the edge in Montana.

That leaves three more states they must win, and the most competitive seats are in deep red Republican states with Democratic incumbents, such as Arkansas, Louisiana, North Carolina, and Alaska, he said.

"This is the six-year election of a two-term Democratic administration, and we have a phenomenon we call the sixth-year itch," Sabato told host Megyn Kelly. "Usually it's a bad year for the incumbent White House party. Well, guess what? We're starting to see a little drift in the direction of Republicans."

Early readings show Republicans are on the cusp of picking up the Senate, he said.

"They may fall just short; they may fall over the line. But they're going to pick up seats."

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