Tina Smith Listed Among Top 10 Most Vulnerable Senators

Tina Smith

Sen. Tina Smith (D-MN) was recently listed as one of the top 10 most vulnerable senators seeking reelection in the nation, joining fellow Democrats like Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) and Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND).

Unlike like her Democratic colleagues, however, Smith is campaigning in her first race for the U.S. Senate since she picked up her current seat by appointment after Al Franken resigned, making her particularly susceptible to defeat, according to Roll Call.

The publication’s semi-annual rankings consider polling as well as “conversations with strategists from both sides of the aisle” to determine the most vulnerable House and Senate incumbents, updating the list on a monthly basis. This month, Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) dropped off the list, clearing room for Smith in the number 10 spot.

“Smith is running in the one Upper Midwest state that Trump did not carry in 2016, and she continues to lead GOP state Sen. Karin Housley—although sometimes by single digits—in public polling of the special election,” Roll Call explains. “National Democrats made a last-minute investment here last week, but that’s likely an insurance policy since Smith got a late start and wasn’t very well-known from her previous role as lieutenant governor.”

Smith is one of seven other Democrats on the list, with Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV) and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) the only two Republicans making the list. On Monday, Smith participated in several of the Democratic-Farmer-Labor (DFL) Party’s final get-out-the-vote efforts, including multiple stops with Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN-05).

On the House side, Rep. Erik Paulsen (R-MN-03) and Rep. Jason Lewis (R-MN-02) occupy the sixth and seventh spots respectively among the most vulnerable House incumbents, all of whom are Republicans.

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Anthony Gockowski is managing editor of The Minnesota Sun. Follow Anthony on Twitter. Email tips to anthony.gockowski@gmail.com.

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