Senate control seems to be the #1 story this election season. As it turns out, the results from Election Day itself may not answer the question. A number of things may be unsettled for weeks and the 100th Senator may not be known until after the new Congress is sworn in.
If Republicans control 51 seats or Democrats control 50 seats after Election Day, we'll know the majority party at that time regardless of whether one or more of the events below come to pass.
If we don't know the majority party, a runoff in Louisiana means we may not know who controls the Senate until December 6. An independent's victory in Kansas and/or South Dakota means we may not know until the new Senate is sworn in (on or about January 3). A runoff in Georgia doesn't take place until January 6, creating the prospect of the party in control on January 3 losing it shortly thereafter. If more than one of these events occurs, it complicates things even further.
One additional complication not considered above: Although not up for re-election this year, Maine's independent Senator Angus King could also play a role in Senate control if he were to decide to caucus with the Republicans instead of the Democrats in 2015. While unlikely, it is not an impossible scenario. In fact, he has endorsed his colleague, Republican Susan Collins for re-election, a race she is expected to win easily.
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