As election season comes to a close, it seems likely that the final call on which party has won Senate control will not be made on Election Day.
According to fivethirtyeight.com, “there’s only a 27% chance (the Republicans) will be able to claim their victory within the first 24 hours or so after polls close on November 4.”
This is dependent on various factors, including Independent Greg Orman‘s decision on who to caucus with if he wins his race in Kansas, and the possibility of runoffs in Georgia and Louisiana.
The Louisiana runoff would come about if no one candidate wins more than 50% of the vote on Election Day. Louisiana holds a ‘jungle primary‘, which is a primary election in which all candidates run in the same primary regardless of party affiliation.
There are nine candidates on the ballot, and Democratic incumbent Mary Landrieu is facing strong challenges from both Republican Bill Cassidy and Republican Rob Maness in the primary. It looks like Landrieu will come out ahead, with Cassidy next, though very unlikely that any candidate will make the 50% cutoff.
The runoff would take place on December 6th, between Landrieu and the winning Republican (likely Cassidy).
Polls have already been done on the likely outcomes of the runoff, and CNN’s polling indicates “Cassidy would fare slightly better in a runoff than Landrieu, 50%-47%.”