Expert says Senate will be up for grabs in 2020

Elaine Kamarck, a fellow at the left-leaning Brookings Institution, said Friday that Democrats will have a better chance of winning the Senate majority in 2020.

"We always knew that it was hard [for Democrats] to take the Senate, mostly because of the seats that [were] up," Kamarck, who is also the director of the Center for Effective Public Management, told Hill.TV's Jamal Simmons on "What America's Thinking." 

"That will not be the case in 2020. There are more Republican seats up. There's the excitement of a presidential [race], and we've got a big age gap in the electorate these days. The more young people vote, the more Democratic outcomes are, and we're going to see that, I think, in 2020," she continued.

"So Democrats have a lot to look forward to," she added. 

Kamarck's comments come as new polling shows Democrats feeling increasingly optimistic about their future after their midterm victories. 

A new American Barometer survey found that 53 percent of Democrats polled said they felt "more optimistic" about the direction of the country, while 13 percent said they felt "more pessimistic," and 34 percent answered "about the same as before." 

Still, winning back the Senate won't be easy for the party. 

If Gov. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) holds his lead in Florida and defeats Sen. Bill NelsonClarence (Bill) William NelsonMcCaskill: 'Too many embarrassing uncles' in the Senate Bill Nelson uses farewell address to remind colleagues ‘no one person is above the law’ Coal supporter Manchin named top Dem on Senate Energy Committee MORE, Republicans are likely to have a 53-47 edge in this year's Senate. 

In 2020, the best Democratic chances for gains are in Maine and Colorado, which are the only states won by Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonLanny Davis says Nixon had more respect for the Constitution than Trump Clinton commemorates Sandy Hook anniversary: 'No child should have to fear violence' Sanders, Warren meet ahead of potential 2020 bids MORE in the last presidential race that have GOP incumbents up for reelection.

Democrats will also be defending Sen. Doug Jones's seat in Alabama, which could be tough to hold.

Other possible targets for Democrats in 2020 include Sens. Joni ErnstJoni Kay ErnstSenators offer measure naming Saudi crown prince 'responsible' for Khashoggi slaying Trump shock leaves Republicans anxious over 2019 Iowa’s Ernst will run for reelection in 2020 MORE (R-Iowa), Thom TillisThomas (Thom) Roland TillisSenate votes to overturn IRS guidance limiting donor disclosure GOP tensions running high on criminal justice bill Trump tells McConnell to let Senate vote on criminal justice reform MORE (R-N.C.) and David Perdue (R-Ga.). 

— Julia Manchester