Catherine Cortez Masto

Democrats Pick Up First Seat, but Bayh Loses, Rubio Wins
Republicans say they are surprised things are this competitive given Trump, blue-state heavy map

Pennsylvania GOP Sen. Patrick J. Toomey has trailed his Democratic opponent Katie McGinty in 10 of the last 12 public polls. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Update: 8:38 p.m.

The first big result of the night (for Senate races) is in: Evan Bayh has lost his bid in Indiana to return to the Senate.

Republicans in Tight Races Hit Opponents on Clinton Emails
GOP candidates try to turn tables on Democrats and their presidential nominee

New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte released an ad tying her Democratic opponent, Gov. Maggie Hassan, to the Hillary Clinton email scandal. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Just days after Democrats were tying Republican candidates to Donald Trump’s hot mic moment, Republicans in contested races are seizing FBI Director James B. Comey’s revelation about possible new evidence in the Hillary Clinton email investigation to attack their Democratic opponents.

Comey announced last Friday the discovery of emails pertaining to the investigation of Clinton’s use of a private email server during her tenure as secretary of State. He has since been pummeled by Democrats, concerned that his unusual move could influence the election.

‘Wal-Mart Moms’ Don't Know Much About Senate Candidates
Focus group participants familiar with presidential race, very little down-ballot

Nevada Rep. Joe Heck is among the candidates in Senate races that "Wal-Mart moms" know little about. But they revealed, in a focus group on Tuesday, that they know a lot about the presidential race. (Bill Clark/Roll Call file photo)

The Senate race in Nevada between Democrat Catherine Cortez Masto and Republican Rep. Joe Heck is one of the marquee battlegrounds of 2016 — a contest that could determine which party controls the legislative body next year.

And yet, with just two weeks before Election Day, a key bloc of voters doesn’t know much about the race, its candidates, or even whom they’ll vote for.

Harry Reid's Last Senate Stand
Silver State election could help swing the Senate back to Democrats

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid speaks about Hillary Clinton and Nevada Democratic Senate candidate Catherine Cortez Masto with campaign staff and volunteers at the Washoe County Democratic Party office in Reno, Nevada. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

HENDERSON, Nev. — Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid isn’t on this year’s ballot, but he has at least one heavyweight bout left in him.

Since returning to his home state over the weekend, the Senate Democratic leader has been the focus of near-constant attention, doing interviews, holding events and rallying the party faithful for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign and for Catherine Cortez Masto to succeed him. Nevada has emerged as a critical battleground in the Democrats’ efforts to retake control of the Senate.

The Senate: How the Challengers Rank
A new No. 1 rises thanks to his unexpected strength in a Republican state

Democrats are counting on Missouri Secretary of State Jason Kander to win his Senate race against Sen. Roy Blunt. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

How bad can it get for the GOP?

That’s the question party strategists are asking themselves this week after the revelation last Friday of a video in which Donald Trump bragged about sexually assaulting women. Already, former Trump supporters like Sens. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire and Rob Portman of Ohio, and Rep. Joe Heck of Nevada have decided to no longer back their own party’s presidential nominee. Other Republicans may not be far behind. 

Are Senate Republicans Over-Performing Trump?
Kelly Ayotte, Marco Rubio lead the way among GOP senators

Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte is over-performing her party's presidential nominee Donald Trump by almost 9 points in New Hampshire. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Republicans have always believed that to hold their Senate majority they needed to run ahead of Donald Trump.

Some of their candidates are having more success than others.

In TV Ads, Senate Democrats Avoid Trump
Party strategists say their campaigns run deeper than the GOP nominee

North Carolina's Deborah Ross, center, has not yet linked her opponent Sen. Richard M. Burr to Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump in TV advertising in their Senate race. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Democrats have run TV ads accusing North Carolina Sen. Richard M. Burr of profiting from his office, undermining Medicare, and exacerbating congressional gridlock.  

And yet, a month before Election Day, the party’s candidates and their allies have conspicuously and surprisingly avoided one subject altogether in their on-air barrage: Donald Trump.

NRA Hits Cortez Masto as Another Harry Reid
Group spends $1 million on new ad in Nevada Senate race

The NRA says in a new ad that Nevada Democratic Senate hopeful Catherine Cortez Masto would vote like retiring Sen. Harry Reid. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The National Rifle Association dropped $1 million on a new ad hitting Nevada Democratic Senate candidate Catherine Cortez Masto as being a repeat of retiring Sen. Harry Reid.

The ad highlights Reid's leadership in the Senate when he was majority leader and his votes for gun control and for judges whom the ad called "anti-gun." The ad then says Reid is trying to force Nevada to elect Cortez Masto, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.

Can Joe Heck Really Win in Nevada?
Democrats say no but admit they have a lot of work left to hold Reid's seat

Nevada Rep. Joe Heck has held a consistent edge in the polls in his Senate race against Democrat Catherine Cortez Masto. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The first debate is around the corner. Early voting begins in a month. And Election Day is just seven weeks away.

And yet, polls show Rep. Joe Heck is still ahead in the Nevada Senate race.

Big Ad Buys in Nevada Hit Heck on Trump, 'Big Oil'
Environmental, Democratic groups target Republican in Nevada Senate race

Nevada Rep. Joe Heck, right, is compared to Donald Trump in a new ad from the Senate Majority PAC. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The League of Conservation Voters is dropping $860,000 on an ad buy against Nevada Republican Senate candidate Joe Heck while another group is launching a new ad tying the congressman to his party's presidential candidate.

The league's ad says Nevada has created 25,000 clean energy jobs but Heck compromised them “when he votes big oil’s way,” the Reno Gazette Journal reported. The ad says he has received more than $300,000 in contributions from the oil and gas industry.