Much has changed since our spring Senate power rankings. Some previously unexpected candidates like Alan Grayson and Joe Heck have jumped in, while some anticipated ones like Kay Hagan have passed on the 2016 elections. One thing we do know, though, is that the race for control of the Senate remains precariously balanced between the two parties.
Three clear tiers of Senate races have emerged 15 months away from the next election, when Democrats would need to win four seats (five if they lose the White House) to recapture control of the chamber.
Republicans look more likely than not right now to lose two blue-state seats. But after that, it’s far too early to say whether one party or the other holds a definitive advantage in five toss-up seats—four held by Republicans and one by retiring Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid.
After that, another handful of five swing states could potentially come into play later—but only if something dramatic happens. Ultimately, many if not all of these races are going to track closely with the presidential campaign, but each party is still maneuvering and preparing to raise and spend millions of dollars in the hope that a percentage-point swing here or there could end up swinging the Senate.
Without further ado, here’s our look at the 2016 Senate landscape, ranked in terms of which seats look most likely to change hands next year: