WASHINGTON (AP) — The fates of President Barack Obama and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney in November are likely to impact more than the White House. They will help shape a number of key Senate and House races.
The prospect of presidential coattails — or the opposite, a drag — is factoring into the way races down the ballot are being run, especially in close contests.
Romney's struggle to overcome his remarks about the "47 percent" of Americans who don't pay income tax offers an early demonstration of how the top of the ticket can quickly shake other races.
His comment that they think they are "victims" entitled to government help sent Republican Senate candidates scrambling. In Massachusetts, Connecticut, Nevada and Hawaii, Republicans respectfully but surely disavowed Romney's remarks.