A longtime conservative activist suggests it's going to be tough for Republicans to hold on to the U.S. Senate this fall.
"It's so lopsided this year. Republicans are defending a lot more seats than the Democrats are," observes Gary Bauer, president of American Values and a former staffer in the Ronald Reagan White House.
In the U.S. Senate, Republicans currently hold 54 seats while 34 seats are up for re-election this year. Twenty-four are held by Republicans.
An analysis of the current Senate races shows Republicans will likely hold on to 48 seats and Democrats will keep 47 seats, leaving five "toss-up" races to decide who has the majority after November. That analysis is at website centerforpolitics.com.
"And quite a few of those seats," says Bauer, "are in at best purple states that we can win but Barack Obama has won a couple of times. And so the challenge becomes a very substantial one."
There is a chance the current GOP presidential primary can help in the General Election, says Bauer. That's because Donald Trump and Ted Cruz may bring voters to the polls, he predicts, especially those who identify as working-class and lower-middle-class voters.
"They're feeling very threatened economically and otherwise," Bauer says of those voters, "and they are not fans of Hillary Clinton or the Left's policies."
Those voters could turn out in record numbers, he says, which could bode well for GOP candidates facing tough re-election challenges in states like Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.