National Republicans have introduced a genuine challenge to Delaware’s Democratic leaning by putting in play the person who may be the single viable GOP candidate for VP Joe Biden’s unexpired Senate seat. Today, Congressman Mike Castle (R) responded positively to National Republican Senatorial Committee recruiting efforts and announced his decision to run for the seat.
Attorney General Beau Biden, the vice president’s son, is expected to be the Democratic contender in next fall’s election. In spite of Beau Biden’s high-profile name, political analyses are predicting an extremely competitive race. According to Politico, “[Castle’s] decision is poised to set up a marquee matchup between two of the biggest names in Delaware politics,” while RedState claims, “Castle’s expected entrance into the race instantly makes the race for one of the Democrats’ safest seats competitive.”
Some analyses even give the early advantage in the race to Castle, a former governor who has been elected statewide for over 25 years. Rothenberg Political Report cites polls as it “[moves] the Delaware Senate seat from Currently Safe for Democrats to Lean Takeover for the GOP.”
It is too early to give a meaningful advantage to either candidate. In fact, it still remains to be seen if Biden will hold onto the bid. Recently returned from a year-long deployment in Iraq, Biden is still in the process of determining his political trajectory. Nonetheless, we can reasonably expect that he will run. And we can now expect an extremely tight race.