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2022 Midterm Elections

What does the Senate do and how many seats are up for grabs in the Midterm Elections?

The terms for Senators is six years, and every two years a third of Senate seats are up for election. Who is up for election this year?

A woman holds a campaign towel at a campaign rally for Pennsylvania Democratic U.S. Senate candidate John Fetterman ahead of the 2022 U.S. midterm election in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S. November 7, 2022.  REUTERS/Quinn Glabicki

The Senate is the upper chamber of the US Congress, with each of the fifty states having two representatives. The House of Representatives is the lower chamber, and the 435 members are distributed among states based on their population. Together, the founding fathers believed that these two houses would balance power between states with large differences in population.

A term for a US Senator last six years, compared to only two in the House, and each election cycle (midterms and general), a third of Senator’s seats are up for election.

Currently, there is a fifty-fifty split in the Senate, with Vice President Kamala Harris able to cast the tie-breaking vote.

Senators Pat Toomey (PA - R), Rob Portman (OH - R), Jim Inhofe (OK - R), Richard Burr (NC - R), Richard Shelby (AL - R), Roy Blunt (MO - R) and Patrick Leahey (VT - I) are all retiring. The fact that an incumbent is not in the race makes the state more competitive. We can look to Ohio and Pennsylvania as clear examples of this phenomenon.

Of the thirty-five races up for grabs, twenty-two were held by Republicans, which in theory, should give Democrats an advantage as they need to hold onto far fewer seats. Whether or not that turns out to be true... will be seen over the next few days.

Which states have the same Senate races?

  • Alabama: Will Boyd (D) & Katie Britt (R)
  • Alaska: Lisa Murkowski (R) & Kelly Tshibaka (R) & Patricia Chesbro (D) & Buzz Kelley (R)
  • Arizona: Mark Kelly (Incumbent- D) & Blake Masters (R)
  • Arkansas: John Boozman (Incumbent - R) & Natalie James (D)
  • California (special & regular election): Alex Padilla (Incumbent- D) & Mark Meuser (R)
  • Colorado: Michael Bennett (Incumbent- D) & Joe O’Dea (R)
  • Connecticut: Richard Blumenthal (Incumbent- D) & Leora Levy (R)
  • Florida: Marco Rubio (Incumbent- R) & Val Demings (D)
  • Georgia: Raphael Warnock (Incumbent- D) & Herschel Walker (R)
  • Hawaii: Brian Schatz (Incumbent- D) & Bob McDermott (R)
  • Idaho: Mike Crapo (Incumbent- R) & David Roth (D)
  • Illinois: Tammy Duckworth (Incumbent- D) & Kathy Salvi (R)
  • Indiana: Todd C. Young (Incumbent - R) & Thomas McDermott Jr. (D)
  • Iowa: Chuck Grassley (Incumbent -R ) & Michael Franken (D)
  • Kansas: Jerry Moran (Incumbent - R) & Mark R. Holland (D)
  • Kentucky: Rand Paul ( (Incumbent- R) & Charles Booker (D)
  • Louisiana: Does not have a primary, many candidates appear on the November ballot.
    • John Neely Kennedy (Incumbent - R)
    • Beryl Billiot (Independent)
    • Gary Chambers (D)
    • Devin Lance Graham (R)
    • Xan John (Independent)
    • W. Thomas La Fontaine Olson (Independent)
    • Bradley McMorris (Independent)
    • M.V. Mendoza (D)
    • Luke Mixon (D)
    • Salvador Rodriguez (D)
    • Aaron Sigler (L)
    • Syrita Steib (D)
    • Thomas Wenn (Independent)
  • Maryland: Chris Van Hollen (Incumbent - D) Chris Chaffee (R)
  • Missouri: Trudy Busch Valentine (D) & Eric Schmitt (R)
  • Nevada: Catherine Cortez-Masto (Incumbent- D) & Adam Laxalt (R)
  • New Hampshire: Maggie Hassan (Incumbent- D) & Don Bolduc (R)
  • New York: Chuck Schummer (Incumbent- D) & Joe Pinion (R / Conservative Party)
  • North Carolina: Cheri Beasley (D) & Ted Budd (R)
  • North Dakota: John Hoeven (Incumbent - R) & Katrina Christiansen (D)
  • Ohio: Tim Ryan (D) & JD Vance (R)
  • Oklahoma (regular): James Lankford (Incumbent - R) & Madison Horn (D)
  • Oklahoma (special): Kendra Horn (D) & Markwayne Mullin (R)
  • Oregon: Ron Wyden (Incumbent - D/ Independent) & Jo Rae Perkins (R / Constitution Party)
  • Pennsylvania: John Fetterman (D) & Mehmet Oz (R)
  • South Carolina: Tim Scott (Incumbent - R) & Krystle Matthews (D)
  • South Dakota: John Thune (R - Incumbent) & Brian Bengs (D)
  • Utah:
    • Mike Lee (Incumbent - R)
    • Tommy Williams (Independent American Party of Utah)
    • James Arthur Hansen (L)
    • Evan McMullin (Independent)
  • Vermont: Peter Welch (D) & Gerald Malloy (R)
  • Washington: Patty Murray (Incumbent -D) & Tiffany Smiley (R)
  • Wisconsin: Ron Johnson (Incumbent- R) & Mandela Barnes (D)

What is the state of the race?

We all know the polls can be wrong, this midterm season is no different, and with many races within two to three points, they are well within the margin of error. Currently, FiveThirtyEight, which tracks all major polls, gives Republicans a better chance of taking control of the Senate.

There are fourteen states where Republicans are expected to easily win, compared to nine states where Democrats are in the same position.

Races in Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, Ohio, and Pennsylvania are those that should be watched carefully. These states, plus those in the ‘Lean’ category, will determine the makeup of the senate.

Strong RepublicanLean Republican Toss Up Lean DemocratStrong Democrat
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