A closer look at the Senate


It’s early yet in the race for the US Senate, and many races which figure to heat up are as yet uncontested. For example, Mary Landrieu (D-LA) figures to be a major target for Republicans this cycle, but as yet a challenger has not stepped forward officially. Here are the states where the battle has already begun. Alaska: Incumbent Ted Stevens (R) is under investigation, but has 862K on hand. Challenger Rocky Caldero (D) is not well-funded as yet, with only 14K. Colorado: In a battle for an open seat, Mark Udall (D) has a huge lead over Robert Schaffer (R), with 2.5M compared to 683K. Georgia: Incumbent Saxby Chambliss has 3.371M on hand, three Democrats vying for the right to challenge him total less than 200K. Idaho: Incumbent Larry Craig (R) does not have a whole lot of cash with 549K in the bank, but it’s a lot more than challenger Larry Larocco’s (D) 44K. Iowa: Incumbent Tom Harkin (D) has 2.644M George Washingtons in his account. Challenger Steve Rathje (R) Not so much – 16K. Maine: This is a battleground, with the national Democratic party going after incumbent Susan Collins (R), who has 2.307M. Challenger Thomas Allen (D) is not far behind with 1.718M. Minnesota: Another battleground, with incumbent Norm Coleman sitting on 3.982M. Challenger Al Franken (D) has 1.952M in the bank, and another prospective challenger, Michael Ciresi (D), has 643K. Nebraska: Incumbent Chuck Hagel (R) has been critical of Iraq policy, and while there is no Democrat in the race yet, he’s facing a serious primary challenge from Jon Bruning (R). Bruning’s winning the cash war, 643K to 483K. Former Nebraska Sen. Bob Kerrey (D) says he may enter the race if Hagel retires. New Hampshire: Incumbent John Sununu has a target on his back. He is sitting on 2.107M. The best funded of three challengers is Katrina Swett (D) with 1.078M. New Mexico: Incumbent Pete Domenici (R) is well ahead of challenger Don Wiviott (D), 1.054M to 405K. Oregon: Incumbent Gordon Smith (R) is a target as well, but with 3.517M, his current opponent Steven Novick has a lot of ground to make up from his current total of 177K. Texas: Can the Democrats outs incumbent John Cornyn (R) If not, it will not be because of lack of funding. Cornyn has a healthy 5.347M in the bank, but challenger Mikal Watts (D) has an almost as healthy 4.898M.