Ballot Box

Sen. Kyl: 'It will not be as easy' for O'Donnell

Senate GOP Whip Jon Kyl (Ariz.) on Wednesday agreed with predictions that Tea Party candidate Christine O'Donnell's upset primary win has imperiled Republican hopes for taking over the Senate, but said he will help her anyway.

"The conventional wisdom was that Mike Castle was seen as a shoo-in," Kyl told The Hill. "Obviously it will not be as easy for Christine O'Donnell. I'm just assuming that's true; I haven't seen poll results."

Kyl said he is undecided about whether he will donate funds to O'Donnell, but said he will support her candidacy.


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Race ratings: Delaware likely to remain in the Dem column

Vice President Joe Biden's former Senate seat is more likely to stay in Democratic hands after the victory of Christine O'Donnell in the Republican primary Tuesday.

The Ballot Box has shifted the Delaware Senate race from "leans Republican" to "leans Democratic."

Republicans had been hopeful of capturing the seat with centrist Rep. Mike Castle (R-Del.) as the party's nominee. O'Donnell's bid is far more problematic for the GOP.

She is a perennial candidate who has made several unsuccessful runs for office. O'Donnell has been a frequent guest on television and radio shows to advocate for abstinence and other social issues, which won't win centrists or Democrats in Delaware. In 2008, she said then-Sen. Barack Obama was "anti-American."

A Public Policy Polling survey out Wednesday shows Democrat Chris Coons enters the general election race with a 50-34 lead over O'Donnell. Had Castle won Tuesday night, he would have a 45-35 lead over Coons, according to the Democratic firm's Sept. 11-12 poll of 958 likely Delaware voters.

O'Donnell has the support of Sarah Palin and Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), and the national party appears willing to support her.

"I reached out to Christine this morning, and as I have conveyed to all of our nominees, I offered her my personal congratulations and let her know that she has our support," Sen. John Cornyn (Texas), chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, said in a statement  Wednesday. "This support includes a check for $42,000 — the maximum allowable donation that we have provided to all of our nominees — which the NRSC will send to her campaign today."

She certainly needs the money — O'Donnell had only $20,000 banked at the end of August. Coons has almost $1 million.

See the Ballot Box's complete race ratings here.

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CHART: Results of Tuesday night's races

The Hill compiled the results of major primaries held across the U.S. on Tuesday.

Find the results of these key races below, with the winners bolded. The New Hampshire Republican Senate primary remains too close to call.

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Coons campaign wastes no time labeling O'Donnell 'extreme'

So how happy is the campaign of New Castle County Executive Chris Coons (D) that his opponent this fall will be Tea Party-backed Christine O'Donnell?

Just look at the splash page of the candidate's website, which features a photo of O'Donnell under the heading, "It's Official: Meet our GOP Opponent: Christine O'Donnell."

The splash page labels Coons "a leader focused on creating jobs, not promoting bizarre conspiracy theories and an extreme social agenda."

It foreshadows just how harsh the Democratic message about O'Donnell will be this fall.

Public polls on a hypothetical general-election match-up between O'Donnell and Coons, taken before O'Donnell's primary win Tuesday, had the Democrat leading by double digits.

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Ex-Rep. Bass wins primary for old job

New Hampshire Republican Charlie Bass is one step closer to getting his old job back.

The former congressman, who lost to now-Rep. Paul Hodes (D-N.H.) in 2006, defeated broadcaster Jennifer Horn (R) and Bob Giuda, a former state lawmaker, in Tuesday’s 2nd district primary.

Bass had 42 percent of the vote to 35 for Horn and 18 for Giuda. With 142 of 188 precincts reporting, The Associated Press declared him the winner.

Hodes is running for the Senate, and his Democratic-leaning district is seen as a possible pickup for Republicans.

Bass and Horn clashed over support for congressional term limits, while Giuda, the party's 2008 nominee, touted his experience.

Tea Party support was also an issue in this race.

When he kicked off his campaign in February, Bass proclaimed his affection for the conservative Tea Party. "I love them," he told reporters. "God bless every single one of them. Their agenda is exactly the same as mine."

But Horn attacked Bass relentlessly for tacitly endorsing congressional spending increases during his six terms in office.

"I really think he's kidding himself," Horn said about Bass’s embrace of the Tea Party. "The Tea Party is looking for a return to limited spending, limited government. Charlie stood for and voted for exactly the opposite of that throughout his tenure in Congress."

Ultimately, she raised less than $200,000 for her campaign. Bass, on the other hand, pulled in more than $530,000.

Bass faces Democrat Ann McLane Kuster in November.

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