GOP in Good Shape to Take Senate Majority

Republicans need a net gain of 3 seats, and 5 Dem-held seats are toss-ups
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 6, 2011 1:08 PM CST
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky., gives thumbs up after addrssing the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Washington, Thursday, Feb. 10, 2011.   (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

(Newser) – Thanks in part to a rash of Democrats retiring from the Senate, things are looking pretty good for the Republicans in 2012. In the first edition of its 2012 race ratings, The Hill places five seats currently held by Democrats in the “toss-up” column—and Republicans only need a net gain of three seats to win control. Three of those toss-ups are due to retirements; the other two are Montana Sen. Jon Tester and Nebraska Sen. Ben Nelson.

The situation is less clear on the House side, thanks to redistricting. But Democrats need 25 seats to retake the majority, and are starting that fight by targeting the 14 Republican-held seats that are the most Democratic-leaning. Some of the seats are in districts that both President Obama and John Kerry took in the past two presidential elections.

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