States With the Closest Senate Races This Election

The U.S. Senate is the most powerful body in congress. Currently, though, the Senate is split evenly between Republicans and Democrats (including Independents who caucus with the Democrats). Vice President Kamala Harris can cast tie-breaking votes, effectively putting the chamber in Democratic control. However, with the midterm elections only days away, that may soon change. 

This year, there are 35 Senate seats up for grabs in the Nov. 8 elections – 14 of which are currently held by Democrats and 21 that are held by Republicans. In most of those races, the results are already all but assured, with one party heavily favored to win. Still, there are a handful of key races in which candidates are neck and neck, and the results of these toss-up races will determine the balance of power in the Senate for at least the next two years. (Here is a look at the U.S. senators who became less popular in the last year.)

24/7 Wall St. reviewed election analysis from data analytics company FiveThirtyEight to identify the elections that will determine which party controls the Senate. Races are ordered from least competitive to most competitive, according to FiveThirtyEight as of Oct. 31, 2022, and alphabetically within ties. FiveThirtyEight’s forecasting is based on a number of factors, including polling, fundraising, historical voting patterns, and expert analysis. A full description of the methodology is available here

We also included supplemental analysis from the Cook Political Report and, for each race, listed the candidates who are running for, or endorsed by, one of the two major political parties. Write-in candidates are not listed. 

Which party controls the Senate will have massive implications for the country. With the Republican Party strongly favored to win a majority in the House of Representatives, a victory in the Senate would likely grant the GOP control of the entire legislative branch. Such an outcome would hamstring the Biden Administration’s policy agenda and likely result in deadlock between the legislative and executive branches. (Here is a look at America’s most politically divided cities.)

Based on projections from FiveThirtyEight, the five tightest Senate races this November are in Georgia, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Arizona, and New Hampshire. Currently, Democrats hold the seat that is up for grabs in every one of those states, with the exception of Pennsylvania. If the GOP can flip just one of them while maintaining power in Pennsylvania, the Democratic Party will lose control of the U.S. Senate.

Click here to see states with the closest senate races this election.

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