Ten Races Where Mitt Romney Could Sink GOP Candidates
Mitt Romney’s campaign woes have taken a toll on Republican candidates in Democratic-leaning or swing states.
Polls show that some Republicans who had been running ahead of Democratic opponents have now slipped into tight contests, while others who had been surging around Labor Day have now dropped behind.
The impact of Romney’s struggles is not as evident in heavily Republican states, where President Obama appears to have little or no coattails.
Here are ten elections where Obama’s strength — or Romney’s weakness — could sink Republican nominees:
Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown
The freshman Republican shocked the Democratic establishment by winning a 2010 special election for the Senate seat long held by Ted Kennedy, but now he’s suffering from anti-Romney backlash in Mitt’s home state. The GOP presidential candidate, a former Massachusetts governor, is trailing in Bay State polls by as many as 33 percentage points. Even though the state has a large bloc of independents — and Brown is one of the most independent Republicans in the Senate — a massive Obama blow-out could make a flawed Democratic nominee, Elizabeth Warren, a senator.
Connecticut Senate candidate Linda McMahon
Just when Republican Senate candidate Linda McMahon was surging, Mitt Romney’s “47 percent” controversy came along. The former wrestling CEO, who has run a disciplined and well-organized campaign, saw a short-lived lead over Democrat Chris Murphy turn into a small but significant deficit over the past three weeks. McMahon still has a chance if her attacks on Murphy’s attendance record and personal finances become significant issues in the eyes of the voters. But a double-digit win by Obama could doom her best efforts.
Rhode Island House challenger Brendan Doherty
Freshman Democrat David Cicilline is in trouble not because of anything he’s done in Washington, but because of the mess he left behind in Providence. Cicilline, the city’s former mayor, said two years ago that he was leaving the city in excellent condition. The current mayor, Democrat Angel Taveras, has described Providence’s finances as a ”Category 5 hurricane.” His Republican opponent, former Rhode Island State Police Chief Brendan Doherty, has remained competitive in a state with a three-to-one Democratic registration edge and an independent governor who is backing President Obama. Cicilline is trying to tie Doherty to the Romney-Ryan agenda, prompting Doherty to tell the Associated Press: ”I am not a part of any radical position. I’m running as Brendan Doherty. I’m my own man.” Doherty could be the right candidate in the wrong year.