Tomorrow is election day. Time to earn my junior pundit merit badge with stunningly inaccurate predictions that, 24 hours from now, I'll look back on either as a product of my youth and inexperience, or a good joke to be enjoyed with a hearty chuckle...
Only one that I've followed is here in Massachusetts. 16 years of the Republicans holding the corner office, and providing a (mostly weak and ineffective) check on the excesses of the super-majority Democratic legislature comes to an end as Deval Patrick wins handily over Kerry Healey.
House Of Representatives:
The conventional wisdom in the mainstream press has been, for a couple of months now, has been that the Democrats would take back the House of Representatives. Handily. Big Democratic wave. The conventional wisdom of the right half of the blogosphere for the past week or so is that the mainstream press has been "cocooned" and missed the story. I suspect that the truth is somewhere in the middle. I don't think that the Democrats take as many seats as the mainstream press does, but I think that they take enough. They need 15 seats - I think that they end up taking 17 or 18, giving us Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
I hope I'm wrong...
RI: The RSCC poured millions of dollars into defending Lincoln Chaffee, who only votes right once, on the organization of the Senate. Chaffee ekes out a race that looked lost 3 months, 2 months, 1 month, even 1 week ago. And the Republicans regret it if he provides the margin for holding the Senate, as he pulls a "Jumpin'" Jim Jeffords. (He'll only switch if that gives the Dems control...)
CT: Some of the nutroots are still engaged in the fantasy that Mr. Lamont goes to Washington. No chance. Lieberman wins, comfortably if not big.
NJ: Menendez is a crook. Tom Kean Jr. is an empty suit. The crook has a "-D," the empty suit has an "-R." The crook wins.
PA: In 1962, Edward McCormack told Ted Kennedy, in his first Senate campaign, that "if your name were Edward Moore, your candidacy would be a joke." I don't know what Bob Casey Jr's middle name is, but if it were his last name, that would hold here. Unfortunately, he's going to win, on the strength of his father's name, and the vilification of Rick Santorum. It's a closer loss than many expected, but it's a loss, and it is a signficant loss for conservatives in America, as Santorum is one of their best friends in the Senate.
VA: George Allen has had to run against James Webb and The Washington Post. He's not done either particularly well, but he's done it well enough to hang on.
MD: The shocker of the night. In a race that the mainstream press never, ever considered competitive, Michael Steele takes 30% of the black vote and becomes the only black Republican in the US Senate.
TN: In Maryland, Barack Obama urged voters to look beyond the color of the candidate's skin. In Tennessee, he asks them to send another black Senator. He doesn't get his request in either place, as Tennessee sends Bob Corker to Washington, and Harold Ford has to get a real job.
OH: Like Santorum in Pennsylvania, Dewine loses a tighter race than many expected, but he loses nonetheless.
MO: Jim Talent holds on. Wins by 3-4 points. And Amendment 2 goes down.
MN: Klobuchar holds the seat for the Democrats. In a different year, the Republicans might have challenged for this one, but the headwinds are just too strong.
MT: In a race that was given up two weeks ago, Conrad Burns storms back and survives.
Net: Democrats take 2 Republican seats (PA, OH). Republicans take 1 Democratic seat (MD). Democrats improve by 1, but remain in the minority in the US Senate.