By Molly K. Hooper - 01/03/14 09:17 AM EST
A high-ranking House GOP lawmaker predicts big congressional wins for his party in November.
Cole, a close ally of Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and former head of the National Republican Congressional Committee, also thinks House Republicans will pick up seats in the lower chamber, though he said there are fewer opportunities for gains there.
Cole cautioned that his colleagues need to “make sure that we don't do something foolish” that could jeopardize a good showing in the midterms.
He said the GOP can’t allow Washington to “default on the debt or shut down the government -- things of that nature are actually the greatest political danger to us.”
In the Senate, Republicans are defending 14 seats this cycle, while Democrats are defending 21 seats.
The GOP could pick up seats in South Dakota, West Virginia, Arkansas, Louisiana, Montana, Louisiana and North Carolina, Cole said.