Elizabeth Dole is the senator from North Carolina. She is running against Kay Hagan, who is a Democratic senator, who wants a promotion. I have been watching the race but not really posting that much about it. I was talking with Kos about the political landscape and I brought up this race. We both think that it is a very winnable seat for the Democrats.

From DailyKos (brownsox):

If you’re looking for a guide on how to run a flawless campaign, perhaps the best example for this cycle comes from North Carolina’s U.S. Senate race, from Democrat Kay Hagan.

Rasmussen. 10/8. Likely voters. MoE 4%. (9/23 results)

Hagan (D) 49 (48)
Dole (R) 44 (45)
Cole (R) 2

That’s a nice-looking five-point lead for the Democrat, and even Republican-leaning pollster Civitas has Hagan ahead 45-42.

Meanwhile, Hagan is racking up newspaper endorsements; she received the Winston-Salem Journal’s endorsement today, to follow the Greensboro News and Record and the Asheville Citizen-Times. From the Journal endorsement:

Hagan, 55, is a bundle of brains and energy. A lawyer and former banker, she has been a leader in the state Senate almost since the day she entered 10 years ago. Alongside budget committee co-chairwoman Sen. Linda Garrou, Hagan led the crafting of the budgets that have guided state spending on schools, roads, social services, economic development and much more.

The editorial outlines the chief complaint against Dole:

No one questions Dole’s work ethic. She’s a vibrant woman. But while in Washington, Dole has reserved her best efforts for issues of importance to the national Republican Party and the Bush administration, not North Carolinians.

As the nation’s financial system teeters, we must also question Dole’s leadership on the Senate Banking Committee. She may have co-sponsored legislation to improve federal regulation a few years ago, but she could not win its passage even in a Republican-led Senate.

This is reflective of perhaps the greatest success for the Hagan campaign and Democratic organizations in the state. The selection of a successful message (that Dole was out of touch, ineffective, and a Washington insider) and relentlessly and effectively pursued that message.

The DSCC’s ads in the North Carolina race have been some of the best we’ve seen, blending humor and cold facts to cast Dole as an absentee backbencher.

Hagan began this race trailing by 15 points. Today, she stands poised to win it. She has run a nearly flawless campaign, independent organizations have been at their most effective, and as a result, Elizabeth Dole’s days in Washington are numbered.

On the web:
Kay Hagan for North Carolina

Update by kos: This is fun: