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Race for the Senate 2016: Analysis from on the ground

The 2016 campaign has featured one of the most unpredictable presidential races in American history. While almost every polling metric forecasts the battle between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump marching toward a predictable end, the battle for the Senate is heating up. One-third of the US Senate is up for reelection and about 11 of those seats are truly competitive.

National media discussion of the battle for the Senate is often limited to the names of the Democratic and Republican Senate nominees and their most recent poll standings. Beyond that, coverage is thin. To combat that lack of information, FixGov is launching a two-week series that will take a closer look at the 11 most competitive races for the United States Senate.

Rather than analyzing these from a perch at Brookings, we chose to ask the experts. We went to some of the top political scientists in each state who are closely following the race to answer a few basic questions:

  1. What are the three most important issues on the campaign trail in your state?
  2. How have the candidates handled these issues and which candidate has been the strongest?
  3. Who are the key interest and demographic groups in your state that have the power to influence the outcome of the election?
  4. How have outside surrogates, SuperPACs, or other outside spending played a role in the race?
  5.  National media attention to this Senate race has been substantial. What important aspects have the media overlooked that may surprise outside observers on Election Day?
  6.  How has the Presidential race influenced the Senate race in your state?

The result has been a fascinating deep dive into some contentious races, with sometimes surprising commentary about what has been happening on the ground. Starting with a post about the Arizona Senate race later today, we will run a post each day until the Friday before the election.

Our guest experts will analyze races in:

Arizona
Florida
Illinois
Indiana
Nevada
New Hampshire
North Carolina
Missouri
Ohio
Pennsylvania
Wisconsin

In the meantime, tweet your thoughts about these races using #FixGovSenate

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