The 2012 campaign for U.S. Senate, including Montana's Epic 2012 Senate Battle Royale, is shaping up to be one of the nation's most competitive in history. The Washington Post continues to rank Jon Tester v. Denny Rehberg among its top 10 races in the country, moving it from fifth to sixth on the list, while putting the overall picture into context:
The nature of the map and the high number of quality candidates who have stepped forward in the first year of the 2012 election cycle could put upwards of half of the 33 Senate seats in play.
Already, the Cook Political Report lists 10 Senate races as toss-ups — more than at this point in the 2010, 2008 or 2006 elections. Cook also rates 21 races as being at least somewhat competitive at this point, which is at least five more than any of the three preceding elections.