The 2022 US Senate Seats Up for Grabs

by John English

Here are the Senate seats that will be subject to the 2022 US midterm elections, separated way too early into four categories.

==LIKELY TO FLIP==

PAT TOOMEY (R-PA), 59 – Open seat; 2-term Toomey is retiring.
Pennsylvania is a purple state that’s managed to have at least one Republican senator since 1947, save for those eighteen months where Arlen Specter flipped from R to D in an effort to keep his seat. Bob Casey Jr (D) is the other senator, but the favorability of the GOP has dropped there over the past two years and especially since Election Day. It largely depends on what type of candidate the GOP nominates, but Lt. Gov. John Fetterman (D) looks like a decent bet to win it all if he wins the primary.

RON JOHNSON (R-WI), 65 – Undecided if running for 3rd term.
Wisconsin was a blue state that has trended purple recently. Trump’s shocking win in the state in 2016 was the first time the GOP nominee had won the state since Reagan’s 1984 historic landslide. Johnson came into office in 2010 with the Tea Party wave, but his recent antics with Russia and his “What armed insurrection?” defense of Trump has turned off many suburban voters. Johnson hasn’t decided if he’s running for a third term. Either way, I think the seat will go blue.

==TOSS-UP==

RAPHAEL WARNOCK (D-GA), 51 – Special election; he just started his 1st term.
He just got in, and he has 18 months to prove to Georgians he deserves to keep the job. The question is if the normally red state will continue with two Democratic senators now that Trump’s not in office. The right GOP candidate could knock him out in what will surely be a close election.

CHUCK GRASSLEY (R-IA), 87 – Undecided if running for 8th term.
He hasn’t made a decision yet, but come on, he’ll be 89 on Election Day 2022. He already has one primary challenger in-state representative Jim Carlin. Iowa’s redness has been getting darker, but this is also the state that had Sen. Tom Harkin (D) for thirty years.

MAGGIE HASSAN (D-NH), 62 – Running for 2nd term.
New Hampshire is purple but it’s deep red compared to its neighbors. Kelly Ayotte was arguably a victim of 2016 Trumpism, and this is the first time since the 1970’s they have had two Democratic senators. I believe she’s vulnerable.

ROB PORTMAN (R-OH), 65 – Open seat, 2-term Portman is retiring.
While they keep re-electing Sherrod Brown, Ohio is red, and I have a hard time seeing the state go with two Democrat senators. Portman would have been a shoo-in for re-election had he run again, but now it’s a matter of the Ohio GOP picking a candidate who isn’t Jim Jordan-level terrible to keep it in their column.

==LIKELY SAFE==

RICHARD SHELBY (R-AL), 86 – Open-seat, 6-term Shelby is retiring.
The only way this would go blue is if the ALGOP nominates Roy Moore again.

LISA MURKOWSKI (R-AK) , 63 – Running for 4th term.
Stared down Sarah Palin and won. Unapologetic with her conviction vote.

MARK KELLY (D-AZ), 56 – Special election; he just started his 1st term.
The AZGOP have only themselves to blame for having two Democratic senators, which they seem to find preferable than when they were represented by John McCain and Jeff Flake.

MARCO RUBIO (R-FL), 49 – Running for 3rd term.
Ivanka Trump has decided not to primary him, a positive. The bloom has really fallen off the rose for Rubio, who would still like to be president someday. Will the state that until 2019 hasn’t had two Republican senators since 1875 keep two pro-Trump Republicans now?

RAND PAUL (R-KY), 58 – Running for 3rd term.
His base loves him, few others do. McConnell’s landslide re-election tells me that Paul’s only fear is if a credible primary challenger emerges, and so far, one has not. I could see a lot of blue money being poured into this race that Paul still wins by 10%.

RICHARD BURR (R-NC), 65 – Open seat, 3-term Burr is retiring.
The unpopular Thom Tillis enjoyed a late surge of support to keep the Senate red when it looked more likely that Biden would win the 2020 presidential election. Burr would have coasted to re-election; considering how deceptively purple this state has become, I wouldn’t guarantee this seat stays with Republicans.

==GUARANTEED SAFE==

MIKE LEE (R-UT), 49 – Running for 3rd term.
Many Democrats and independents may not like how he morphed from a Never Trumper in 2016 to one of Trump’s biggest cheerleaders by the 2020 election, but this is Utah, where Trump won 58% of the vote. The state is 49% Republican, 15% Democrat, and 36% Other/Unaffiliated, the majority of which votes Republican. Steve Schmidt’s dream to primary him is a joke. I’m 99% certain Mike will be re-elected, and I’m 100% certain the seat will be occupied by a Republican.

PATRICK LEAHY (D-VT), 80 – Undecided if running for 9th term.
This seat will stay blue whether he retires or not.

CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY), 70 – Running for 5th term.
The only thing he has to fear is if AOC tries to primary him.

JOHN BOOZMAN (R-AR), 70 – Running for 3rd term.
ALEX PADILLA (D-CA), 47 – Special election; he just started his 1st term.
MICHAEL BENNET (D-CO), 56 – Running for 3rd term.
RICHARD BLUMENTHAL (D-CT), 75 – Running for 3rd term.
BRIAN SCHATZ (D-HI), 48 – Running for 3rd term.
MIKE CRAPO (R-ID), 69 – Running for 5th term.
TAMMY DUCKWORTH (D-IL), 52 – Running for 2nd term.
TODD YOUNG (R-IN), 48 – Running for 2nd term.
JERRY MORAN (R-KS), 66 – Running for 3rd term.
JOHN KENNEDY (R-LA), 69 – Running for 2nd term.
CHRIS VAN HOLLEN (D-MD), 62 – Running for 2nd term.
ROY BLUNT (R-MO), 71 – Running for 3rd term.
JOHN HOEVEN (R-ND), 63 – Running for 3rd term.
CATHERINE CORTEZ MASTO (D-NV), 56 – Running for 2nd term.
JAMES LANKFORD (R-OK), 52 – Running for 3rd term.
RON WYDEN (D-OR), 71 – Running for 6th term.
TIM SCOTT (R-SC), 55 – Running for 3rd term.
JOHN THUNE (R-SD), 60 – Running for 4th term.
PATTY MURRAY (D-WA), 70 – Running for 6th term.

Any questions?

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