When it comes to Republican chances of winning the Senate race in Michigan this year, we have been skeptical. While our colleagues at the Cook Political Report have Democratic Sen. Carl Levin’s seat rated as a Toss-Up , the Rothenberg Political Report /Roll Call has had it rated as Democrat Favored.
As we wrote in the Nov. 8 edition of the Report ($), and continue to believe, the fundamentals in Michigan favor a Democratic candidate in a federal race. But this may not be a typical cycle. Rep. Gary Peters, the likely Democratic nominee, still has plenty of work to do to improve his standing statewide. After all, former Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land, the likely GOP nominee, has held a narrow advantage in five of the last six public polls, and Gov. Rick Snyder (R) is looking better in his re-election effort, possibly boosting Land’s chances. At a minimum, Democrats will have to spend some money to defend Michigan.
So, while the state’s fundamentals still favor Peters, questions about the president’s impact on the midterm elections and greater uncertainty about the appeal of the two Senate hopefuls cause us to change our Rothenberg Political Report /Roll Call rating of the Michigan Senate race to Lean Democrat from Democrat Favored.
Read more in the February 28 issue of The Rothenberg Political Report ($).