In 2014, Republicans faced a relatively "friendly" Senate map: most of the competitive races were seats held by Democrats in states that are considered Republican or swing states. That allowed us to flip 8 seats from Democrat to Republican, while holding all the Republican seats. The end result is a 53-47 GOP majority in the United States Senate for the next two years.
Enter the 2016 map. Here, the map is more or less flipped. While there are two Democrat-held seats that are expected to be competitive (Nevada and Colorado), the majority of races that are expected to be very competitive will be for Republican-held seats -- Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Wisconsin, Ohio, Illinois, and a handful of others . As it currently stands, the GOP can only lose two of these races in 2016 -- if it loses three or more, Republicans will lose their Senate majority.
The first race in the 2016 cycle? Louisiana's Senate run-off election on December 6, 2014.
Yes, I know. 2014 and 2016 are two years apart. But here's the key: if Republicans win the Louisiana race, our incoming majority will be stronger -- a 54-46 seat majority. That means we have a bigger cushion in case 2016 shapes up to be a tough year for the GOP.
Don't get me wrong. I am not giving up on holding (and even expanding!) our Senate majority in 2016. We have some very exciting opportunities, such as defeating Harry Reid in Nevada. However, it's better to be safe than sorry, and whether we win or lose the Louisiana Senate race this year could literally decide whether we hold or lose our Senate majority in 2016.
Defeat Mary Landrieu
Mary Landrieu, Louisiana's Democrat Senator up for re-election this year, faces a tough battle. After a well-fought Republican primary, Republicans have united behind Dr. Bill Cassidy, who represents Louisiana's 6th District in the U.S. House of Representatives. The latest poll for the race shows Cassidy up by 11% -- but in a December run-off, with Election Day on a Saturday, nothing can be taken for granted.
Landrieu votes with President Obama over 95% of the time. She scores a dismal 3% on the Heritage Action scorecard. And even when she tried to rally Senate Democrats to vote in favor of approving the Keystone Pipeline, she fell just short of the 60 votes needed. Even with all 45 Republican Senators voting for the bill, Landrieu failed to persuade even just 15 Democratic Senators who would be willing to work together and pass the bill.
It's time to send Mary Landrieu home.
Learn how you can get involved to #DefeatLandrieu by visiting LAGOP.com!