February marks the true start of filing deadline season, making this as good a time as any to take a look at Senate recruiting and assess how each party has fared. Given the circumstances of this cycle, it’s probably not that surprising that Democrats have excelled while Republicans have struggled.
This wouldn’t be a very fair exercise without making some caveats. First, given that there are only eight GOP-held seats up this cycle, Democrats’ recruiting task has been considerably easier than that of Republicans. Not only has the NRSC and the GOP Senate leadership had to find candidates to run in at least a dozen potentially competitive Democratic-held seats, they also had to recruit candidates for their three open seats.
Second, if the map seems hospitable for Republicans given that President Trump carried 10 of the Democratic-held seats, the GOP has been recruiting against the tide of mid-term history in which the party in power nearly always loses seats and a political environment that is increasingly tilted against them. Trump is unpopular and Democrats have an advantage on the generic
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