According to a Sunday report from The Washington Post, Republicans are "increasingly nervous" about losing control of the Senate.
The report states that Republicans fear there could be a Democratic blue wave in November, not just because Democratic voters are energized, but also because President Donald Trump seems to have bungled the federal government's response to the coronavirus pandemic, which has had a devastating impact on the economy.
A GOP strategist explained that the party's senators are now in a difficult position, trying to distance themselves from Trump's failures while touting their own accomplishments.
"It is a bleak picture right now all across the map, to be honest with you. This whole conversation is a referendum on Trump, and that is a bad place for Republicans to be. But it's also not a forever place," the strategist said.
Another Republican insider conceded that Trump's endorsements and support are not always beneficial for senators.
"It's not always ideal for him to be like, lavishing praise on you. So it's a really tough dynamic," they said.
Democrats need only four seats to flip the Senate, and a number of Republican incumbents seems uniquely vulnerable. Senators Susan Collins of Maine and Thom Tillis of North Carolina will both have to fend off strong Democratic challengers, and GOP leadership is "alarmed" about the situation in their districts.
Some believe the contest between Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden, the Democratic Party's presumptive presidential nominee, will eclipse the Senate races. If Trump manages to beat Biden, the GOP will remain in control of the upper chamber, more optimistic strategists reportedly believe.Although states such as Maine and Colorado appear to be leaning Democratic, Trump could carry Iowa, Arizona, and North Carolina. Furthermore, the GOP could conceivably pick up a seat in Alabama, where Democratic Sen. Doug Jones won a special election three years ago.
According to Stewart Boss, a spokesman for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, the Democratic Party is well-positioned to defeat the GOP.
"Democrats have expanded the Senate map and put Mitch McConnell's majority at risk with impressive challengers, record-breaking grass roots fundraising, and a focus on the issues that matter most to voters like defending coverage protections for preexisting conditions," he said.
Polling suggests that Democrats are indeed in a strong position. According to a Hart Research Associates survey released earlier this week, Biden has opened up a wide lead over Trump in a number of key Senate battlegrounds. The former vice president is ahead in Montana, Arizona, Maine, North Carolina, Iowa, and Colorado.