These 5 different scenarios could impact midterm Senate races: analysis
Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) speaking to CPAC 2013. Photo by Gage Skidmore.

The 2022 battle over the 50-50 split U.S. Senate could be impacted by five different scenarios, according to an analysis posted online on Thursday by The Washington Post.

According to Aaron Blake, one scenario is that conservative voters close ranks behind troubled GOP Senate nominees.

"Polls suggest that has happened with Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania, J.D. Vance in Ohio, Sen. Ron Johnson in Wisconsin and perhaps with Blake Masters in Arizona," Blake wrote. "Right-leaning voters who didn’t like them increasingly do — or at least have decided that the GOP gaining Senate votes is important enough that they can hold their noses. This was somewhat to be expected — and had been predicted — but the scale of this effect matters."

Such a scenario would likely mean the GOP would win the Senate, in addition to the House, which they are largely expected to retake.

A second scenario is that Trump-backed nominees could sink the GOP.

Blake noted three candidates that Trump backed hard in the GOP primaries: Oz, Masters, and Herschel Walker in Georgia.

"If those candidates are double-digits underwater or thereabouts on Election Day, it’s much more difficult to see the party closing the gap," Blake wrote. "It seems possible that Republicans leave these swing seats on the table — a scenario that could trace back not just to bad candidates, but to Donald Trump’s elevation of them in the primaries."

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A third scenario is that gas prices could have more of a regional effect, Blake argued.

"In Nevada, for instance, gas is over $5 per gallon, up more than a dollar since last year. It’s also risen in recent weeks in Arizona ($4.33), where it is up nearly a dollar over the past 12 months," he wrote. "By contrast, gas prices are near $4 in Pennsylvania, but the increase over the past year has been significantly less. And in Georgia and North Carolina, they’re relatively low and have been flatter over the past year. They’ve dropped somewhat in recent weeks in Wisconsin (but are still up from last year)."

Read the rest of full analysis here.