2010 Elections: Parties Draw Battle Lines in Campaign for Congress

The Money Race

The single biggest factor that prevents many Republican party operatives from predicting a slam dunk success at taking the majority is money.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has $26 million on hand, compared to the NRCC's $10 million. That is more than two and a half times as much cash on hand the Democrats have over their Republican counterparts. While that is a lot smaller than the advantage the Democrats had at this point in the 2008 cycle, but a significant and possibly critical advantage nonetheless.

Sessions conceded the importance of money, but he made clear that he doesn't think his candidates need to have more money than the Democrats in order to win back the House.

"We don't need to outraise the DCCC, but we need to be competitive and within some parity. In wave cycles, it's true that the challengers don't need to match the incumbents to beat them. It was proven in 2008," Sessions said.

"In 2006, losing GOP incumbents had a 171 percent cash-on-hand lead over their challengers," he said. "Having a lot of money is a great position to be in, but it is not the final indicator about where you are going to end up on election night.

"We do not have the White House, We do not own the Senate or the House, so we will have to stay after it," he added.

Running on Results, Against Washington

Democrats are eager to paint themselves as the party of results on big-ticket items such as health care reform, Wall Street reform and economic recovery.

But Obama and his political team are also fond of separating him from the rest of unpopular Washington (read: Congress), which could prove uncomfortable for his Democratic brethren on the campaign trail over the next six months.

"There is a great deal of concern about Washington and about the national political climate," Kaine said.

"The strain that is the most powerful strain is a perception that the big tough issues will not be tackled by the culture of Washington that seems to value the status quo rather than making the necessary changes," he said. "This president has been willing to tackle the tough issues."

Although Kaine was not willing to predict any numerical breakdown for the results in November, he did predict the Democrats will still be in the majority.

"We are going to perform in the midterms in such a way that the president will have strong majorities in both houses," Kaine said.

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