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2012 U.S. Senate Incumbent Cash on Hand Rankings

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Most "safe" incumbents lagging behind the pack in cash on hand through 2010

As day breaks on Thursday, some D.C. officeholders are making one final push on the last day of fundraising for the first quarter of 2011.

And while new quarterly numbers won't be available for a few weeks, here is how the nation's 25 U.S. Senators running for reelection in 2012 stack up relative to one another in terms of cash on hand through the 4th Quarter of 2010:

Cash on Hand for 2012 U.S. Senate Incumbents Through 2010

Rank
State
Senator
Party
Cash on Hand
1
MA
Scott Brown
GOP
$7,176,245
2
CA
Dianne Feinstein
Democrat
$3,853,697
3
FL
Bill Nelson
Democrat
$3,083,493
4
UT
Orrin Hatch
GOP
$2,509,182
5
NJ
Bob Menendez
Democrat
$2,426,682
6
IN
Richard Lugar
GOP
$2,351,185
7
MI
Debbie Stabenow
Democrat
$2,033,077
8
MN
Amy Klobuchar
Democrat
$1,613,680
9
OH
Sherrod Brown
Democrat
$1,520,209
10
NE
Ben Nelson
Democrat
$1,450,037
11
PA
Bob Casey
Democrat
$1,315,935
12
ME
Olympia Snowe
GOP
$1,234,629
13
TN
Bob Corker
GOP
$1,135,539
14
WI
Herb Kohl*
Democrat
$1,004,348
15
MO
Claire McCaskill
Democrat
$905,018
16
DE
Tom Carper
Democrat
$799,054
17
RI
Sheldon Whitehouse
Democrat
$722,999
18
NY
Kirsten Gillibrand
Democrat
$614,593
19
WY
John Barrasso
GOP
$601,811
20
MT
Jon Tester
Democrat
$561,822
21
VT
Bernie Sanders
Independent
$535,594
22
WA
Maria Cantwell
Democrat
$499,264
23
MS
Roger Wicker
GOP
$402,771
24
MD
Ben Cardin
Democrat
$385,385
25
WV
Joe Manchin
Democrat
$377,306
* Herb Kohl has not yet officially announced his 2012 plans. Source: Table compiled from FEC data.

It remains to be seen how these numbers will change by next month, but it is interesting to note that almost all of the incumbents deemed "safe" by the leading D.C. prognosticators rank in the bottom half of cash on hand.

Larry Sabato, Charlie Cook, and Stu Rothenberg each agree that Ben Cardin (#24), Roger Wicker (#23), Bernie Sanders (#21), John Barrasso (#19), Kirsten Gillibrand (#18), Sheldon Whitehouse (#17), Tom Carper (#16), and Bob Corker (#13) are all 'safe' in 2012.

The only two Senators unanimously considered safe at the top of the list by these three political observers are California's Dianne Feinstein (#2) and Utah's Orrin Hatch (#4).

Feinstein, of course, represents the most populous state in the nation, so even a relatively safe candidate in the Golden State needs to raise more money than most senators to reach the millions more voters that populate California.

(However, last week Smart Politics challenged the notion that Feinstein is invincible as she seeks a fifth term next year).

Candidates will begin to roll out their new fundraising totals in about a week, with FEC data published in the middle of April.

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Remains of the Data

Plurality-Winning Governors Elected At Century-Long High Water Mark

The rate of gubernatorial candidates elected without the support of a majority of voters is at its highest level since the 1910s.

Political Crumbs

Seeing Red

Congressman Nick Rahall's failed bid for a 20th term in West Virginia this cycle, combined with a narrow loss by Nick Casey to Alex Mooney in Shelley Moore Capito's open seat, means that West Virginia Democrats will be shut out of the state's U.S. House delegation for the first time in over 90 years. The Republican sweep by two-term incumbent David McKinley in the 1st CD, Mooney in the 2nd, and Evan Jenkins over Rahall in the 3rd marks the first time the GOP has held all seats in the chamber from West Virginia since the Election of 1920. During the 67th Congress (1921-1923) all six seats from the state were controlled by the GOP. Since the Election of 1922, Democrats have won 76 percent of all U.S. House elections in the Mountain State - capturing 172 seats compared to 54 for the GOP.


Home Field Advantage?

When the 114th Congress convenes in a few days, Maine will be represented by one home-grown U.S. Representative: Waterville-born Republican Bruce Poliquin. With the departure of Millinocket-born Mike Michaud, who launched a failed gubernatorial bid, the Pine Tree State was poised to send a House delegation to D.C. without any Maine-born members for the first time since 1821. Three-term U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree (born in Minnesota) coasted to reelection as expected, however Poliquin edged Kentucky-born Emily Cain by 5.3 points to keep the streak alive. Since 1876, a total of 208 of the 222 candidates elected to the nation's lower legislative chamber from the state have been born in Maine, or 94 percent.


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