This week saw two noteworthy Democratic Senate candidates join 2022 races — Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes in Wisconsin and former Rep. Abby Finkenauer in Iowa.

Questions remain as to whether or not these hopefuls —who at just 34 and 32 years-old respectively represent a generational shift as well — would be challenging an incumbent GOP senator, given that Iowa’s Chuck Grassley and Wisconsin’s Ron Johnson are still undecided on running again. If they both do though, it’s only Johnson who would be in a truly competitive contest. And even if Iowa is an open seat, it’s one where Republicans would still have a clear advantage.


Barnes’s entrance into an already-crowded Democratic primary to take on Republican Sen. Ron Johnson (if he runs again) gives us one of the biggest missing pieces to consider when looking holistically at the Wisconsin race. We moved this race’s ratings last week from Lean Republican into Toss Up, citing several potentially strong candidates already in the race, along with the likelihood that Barnes was going to join the fray. On Tuesday, he

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