WASHINGTON — The news just keeps getting worse for Republicans in this year's campaigns for Congress.
When Rep. Thomas M. Reynolds of New York announced Thursday he was retiring, that made it 26 GOP lawmakers calling it quits. Only seven seats are being given up by Democrats, who see a chance to fatten their majority.
Things are not much better for the GOP on the Senate side. Democrats feel confident that they can pick up retiring Republican John W. Warner's seat in Virginia, and are campaigning hard for GOP seats being vacated in Colorado and New Mexico. Republicans have yet to recruit top-tier candidates to challenge Democratic senators in GOP-leaning Montana, South Dakota and Arkansas.
The Democrats' majority in the Senate is effectively 51 to 49, including two independents who align themselves with the Democratic Party.
Money is pouring in to the party, and some are talking about making a run for as many as 50 GOP House seats. Less-partisan analysts suggest Democrats can pick up 10 to 20 seats. The House breakdown: Democrats 233 seats, Republicans 198, four vacant.