Republicans Are Showing Serious Swagger Ahead of Election Day

Republicans aren’t playing the expectation game. They are boldly optimistic with two days to go.

WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 18: Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus (R) talks with members of the press after speaking at the National Press Club March 18, 2013 in Washington, DC. During his remarks on a recent 'autopsy' held by the RNC on its shortcomings in the 2012 presidential campaign, Priebus announced a series of recommendations including fewer presidential debates, an earlier national convention, and community outreach programs in addition to other new initiatives.
National Journal
Nov. 2, 2014, 7:23 a.m.

Re­pub­lic­ans aren’t tem­per­ing ex­pect­a­tions ahead of Elec­tion Day. They’re bra­cing for a GOP Sen­ate takeover.

“Their mes­sage isn’t work­ing and our ground game is whip­ping their ground game,” Na­tion­al Re­pub­lic­an Com­mit­tee Chair­man Re­ince Priebus said dur­ing a Sunday ap­pear­ance on ABC’s This Week. “If you look at Col­or­ado we are up up by 105,000 votes right now. Cory Gard­ner is tied with wo­men with Mark Ud­all. We are win­ning His­pan­ic voters in Col­or­ado. We are whip­ping them in Arkan­sas. We are at dead-even on early votes right now in Iowa.”

Priebus ad­ded that the GOP was “ob­vi­ously” win­ning in Montana, West Vir­gin­ia, and South Dakota.

“I have not even talked about Alaska, Louisi­ana,” he said. “We are go­ing to see what is go­ing to hap­pen in North Car­o­lina and New Hamp­shire.”

In the game of ex­pect­a­tions, it’s typ­ic­al for parties to re­main cau­tiously op­tim­ist­ic be­fore a ma­jor elec­tion even when everything looks to be go­ing their way. Re­pub­lic­ans, however, are nearly gloat­ing.

They have good reas­on to be so con­fid­ent. With just two days be­fore the elec­tion, most pun­dits and poll­sters pre­dict Re­pub­lic­ans win the Sen­ate. The Wash­ing­ton Post‘s fore­cast­ing mod­el puts the GOP’s chances of a takeover at 94 per­cent. And in Iowa, where Sen­ate Ma­jor­ity Lead­er Harry Re­id has said the en­tire fu­ture of the Sen­ate rests, Re­pub­lic­an can­did­ate Joni Ernst is up by 7 points.

Demo­crats, mean­while, stayed away from cit­ing many spe­cif­ic races Sunday. Demo­crat­ic Na­tion­al Com­mit­tee Chair­wo­man Debbie Wasser­man Schultz told This Week that she was con­fid­ent Demo­crats could hold their ground in North Car­o­lina and New Hamp­shire; races there are close, but they have nearly al­ways leaned in Demo­crats’ fa­vor. She also said she still be­lieved the Demo­crat­ic eco­nom­ic mes­sage of in­creas­ing the min­im­um wage and en­sur­ing equal pay for wo­men was still an ef­fect­ive mes­sage. Over­all, she is put­ting her faith in the Demo­crat­ic turnout ma­chine mak­ing the dif­fer­ence in tight races.

“I think we are go­ing to hold the Sen­ate. We have a ground game that I know Re­ince would take ours over theirs any day of the week,” Wasser­man Schultz said.

In a sign of just how con­fid­ent Re­pub­lic­ans are head­ing in­to Elec­tion Day, when asked if it would be a “fail­ure” for the RNC if Demo­crats man­aged to run away with the elec­tion in the fi­nal hours of the cam­paign, Priebus stood his ground.

“I think we have to take the Sen­ate,” Priebus said. “I would be very dis­ap­poin­ted.”

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