News Column

Last-minute Cash Pouring Into Senate Races

Nov. 5, 2012

Last-minute cash has been flowing into U.S. Senate races as control of the upper chamber still appears to be up for grabs on Election Day, observers say.

Both parties have spent money on senatorial campaigns in Ohio, Arizona, Illinois and Missouri, among others, which observers say suggests both parties think the Senate's balance of power remains in play, The New York Times reported Sunday.

With just a day to go, Republicans face losing Senate seats in Indiana, Maine and Massachusetts. If that happens, the Times said the best GOP leaders can do is hope for a tie, meaning they'd have to sweep contests in which they either lead or are nearly tied -- Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Virginia and Wisconsin -- and hope that Josh Mandel can pull out an upset victory against incumbent Democrat Sherrod Brown.

Thirty-three seats are up for grabs: 21 Democrat, 10 Republican and two Independent.

Allies of both parties hope voters aren't wedded to candidates in several states, observers told the Times.

In the past two weeks, the U.S. Senate race between Democrat Tim Kaine and Republican George Allen in Virginia was infused with $22 million, the Times said. Third-party groups dumped $17.2 million into Wisconsin in the race between Democratic U.S. Rep. Tammy Baldwin and Republican Tommy Thompson, for example.

Groups also channeled millions of dollars in last-minute funding into Arizona, Indiana, Montana and Nevada.

Source: Copyright United Press International 2012

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