But, in Minnesota, a state where the Democrats thought they had a fairly easy pickup in November, it looks like the Democrats may be about to eat one of their own.
Al Franken, far and away the leading Democratic candidate for Senate, wrote a piece for Playboy magazine in 2000, variously described as "humor" or "satire" (I haven't read the entire piece--only quoted snippets here and there--so I can't fully judge it myself). Planned Parenthood is now sharply criticizing him for the Playboy piece, as have a couple of sitting members of Congress from Minnesota.
Earlier this spring, it came to light that a company owned by Franken failed to pay workers' compensation payments that should have been paid.
What looked like a very promising candidacy is now in danger of crashing and burning...which could result in the re-election of a very conservative Republican Senator, Norm Coleman, who holds a seat that should have gone Democrat in November. Of course, Franken may very well end up winning this thing before it's over but factions within his own party may make that less likely to happen (although, some would say that Franken himself would be responsible for his own demise).
So, while the presidential race is obviously very important, it will be interesting to watch what happens to the U.S. Senate because it will directly affect the degree to which Obama can implement the policies he most wants to champion.