Skip to comments.Election oddsmaker now predicts Talent and Thune victories. Pryor's odds downgraded too
Posted on 10/24/2002 3:57:29 PM PDT by rmmcdaniell
(Latest Update Oct. 24) Jim Talent (R) favored over Sen. Jean Carnahan (D), 40 to 39 (Talent has a 50.6% chance to win; Carnahan's chances downgraded from 50% on Oct. 24 and from 51.3% on Sept. 22, and on Sept. 4 from 52.2% and on Feb. 15 from 53.3%)
DEMOCRATIC SEAT AT CRITICAL RISK Sen. Jean Carnahan (D) has never won an election. She was appointed to this seat after her late husband, former Gov. Mel Carnahan, was elected to it in 2000 after dying in a plane crash, defeating then-Sen. John Ashcroft, the current U.S. attorney general. Though Carnahan trumpets her support of Pres. Bushs war on terrorism and his 2001 tax cut, Republicans have taken aim at her tenuous position. Her opponent is former U.S. Rep. Jim Talent, who lost a close gubernatorial contest in 2000. Recent polls give Talent a slight edge. talent's performance in the recent debate was particularly impressive. For the first time this year, on Oct. 24, we shifted this race to favoring Talent.
(Latest Update Oct. 24) John Thune (R) favored over Sen. Tim Johnson (D), 40 to 39 (Thune has a 50.6% chance to win; chances upgraded from 50% Oct. 24)
DEMOCRATIC SEAT AT CRITICAL RISK Six years ago, then-U.S. Rep. Tim Johnson (D) was the only Senate challenger to topple an incumbent. This time, Sen. Johnson is himself the vulnerable incumbent, fighting hard to hold back a strong bid by U.S. Rep. John Thune (R). Being a House member from this state is a good launching pad to seek a Senate seat because both posts are elected statewide; Johnson proved that last time and Thune is hoping to prove it again. Though Johnson and Thune are the candidates, and competent ones at that, they are often seen as stand-ins for Tom Daschle, the Senate Democratic leader also from this state, and President Bush, who won South Dakota by a sizable 60-38 percent margin in 2000. A Republican win would be a stinging slap at archenemy Daschle. In such a small state, media dollars go a long way and South Dakota voters have already been served up more ads than most voters ever see. Polls rate it close, but Thune seems to now have a very slight advantage.
UPDATED OCT. 24) Mark Pryor (D) favored over Sen. Tim Hutchinson (R), 30 to 29 (Pryor has a 50.8% chance; chances downgraded from 51.3% Oct. 24; Hutchinson's chances upgraded from 50% on Oct. 8, from 50.4% on Aug. 28 and from 52.9% on Aug. 26)
REPUBLICAN SEAT AT CRITICAL RISK First-term Sen. Tim Hutchinson (R) is in a major battle with Attorney General Mark Pryor (D). Hutchinsons divorce and subsequent remarriage to a former staffer tarnished his personal reputation in the eyes of many voters. Pryor is the son of a former governor and senator, David Pryor. Recent polls mark Hutchinson as one of the most vulnerable Senate incumbents. We now rate Pryor a slight favorite.