Will the Senate majority flip…and flop?

Senate majority flip flopRepublicans and Democrats are running neck and neck in a race for the Senate. Hoping to keep their advantage — currently 54 seats to 46(1) — Republicans are defending 24 seats as Democrats struggle to hold on to 10.

There’s no easy call for 2016. The majority may come down to races in eight toss-up states.  

Democrats might pick up the five seats necessary to clinch the Senate majority. But even if they do, the tug-of-war could end up very differently two years from now. In 2018, Democrats will be hard-pressed to defend a full 24 seats.

Election campaign chart

(1) Senators Angus King (I-ME) and Bernie Sanders (I-VT) caucus with the Democrats.