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‹ 2000 United States Senate elections of 2000 (President Delay) 2002 › ›
United States Senate elections of 2000
Class I (34 of the 100) seats to the United States Senate
November 4, 2000
Majority party Minority party
Trent Lott official portrait Tom Daschle, official Senate photo
Leader Trent Lott Tom Daschle
Party Republican Democratic
Leader's seat Mississippi South Dakota
Last election 54 seats 46 seats
Seats after 51 49
Seat change -3 +3
Popular vote 37,732,128 36,057,338
Percentage 51.3% 49.21
Swing +0.9% -1.2%
2000 Senate election map
  Democratic hold
  Democratic pickup
  Republican hold
Majority Leader before election
Trent Lott
Republican Party
Elected Majority Leader
Trent Lott
Republican Party


In 2000, elections for one-third of the seats in the United States Senate occurred (they coincided with the United States presidential election, of George W. Bush as president). The Senate elections featured a number of fiercely contested elections that resulted in a victory for the Democratic Party, which gained four net seats from the Republican Party in the Senate. (Democrats had already gained one seat since the 1998 elections when Zell Miller (D-Ga.) was appointed following the death of Paul M. Coverdell (R-Ga.).)

This was six years after many Republicans had won seats in Senate Class 1 during the elections of 1994, and it was this group who were seeking reelection or retiring in 2000. Because such a large number of these seats were being defended by Republicans, most of the races that were considered to be in play were won by challenging Democrats. They defeated Republican senators Spencer Abraham (R-Mich.), Rod Grams (R-Minn.), John Ashcroft (R-Mo.), and Slade Gorton (R-Wash.), as well as winning the open seat in Florida. Ashcroft's defeat was noteworthy in that his opponent, Mel Carnahan, had died before the election, but still won. (The Democratic governor had promised to appoint Carnahan's wife to the seat if he won). The Republicans did defeat one incumbent, Chuck Robb (D-Va.), and win an open seat in Nevada.

This resulted in the Democrats winning control of the Senate for only 17 days, since Al Gore was still Vice President and President of the Senate. But the Republicans won control the chamber with the tie-breaking vote of the new Vice President Dick Cheney on January 20. The small Republican Majority would last until May 24, 2001 when Republican Senator Jim Jeffords of Vermont left the Republican Party and became an Independent who chose to caucus with the Democrats. The Republicans won back the Senate in the 2002 Midterm elections.

Senate contests in 2000[]

Bold = Winning candidate Blue = Democratic Gain Red = Republican Gain Gray = Retiring Senator

State Incumbent Party Status Opposing Candidates
Arizona Jon Kyl Republican Re-elected, 79.3% William Toel (Independent) 7.8%
Vance Hansen (Green) 7.8%
Barry Hess (Libertarian) 5.1%
California Dianne Feinstein Democratic Re-elected, 55.8% Tom Campbell (Republican) 36.6%
Medea Benjamin (Green) 3.1%
Gail Lightfoot (Libertarian) 1.8%
Diane Beall Templin (American Independent) 1.3%
Jose Camahort (Reform) 0.9%
Brian M. Rees (Natural Law) 0.6%
Connecticut Joe Lieberman Democratic Re-elected, 63.2% Philip Giordano (Republican) 34.1%
William Kozak (Concerned Citizens) 2%
Wildey J. Moore (Libertarian) 0.7%
Delaware William V. Roth, Jr. Republican Retired Republican Victory Mike Castle (Republican) 55%
Thomas R. Carper (Democrat) 45%
Florida Connie Mack Republican Retired, Democratic victory Bill Nelson (Democrat) 51%
Bill McCollum (Republican) 49%
Georgia1 Zell Miller Democratic Re-elected, 58% Mack Mattingly (Republican) 38%
Hawaii Daniel Akaka Democratic Re-elected, 72.7% John Carroll (Republican) 24.5%
Lauri Clegg (Natural Law) 1.2%
Lloyd Jeffrey Mallan (Libertarian) 0.9%
David Porter (Constitution) 0.7%
Indiana Richard Lugar Republican Re-elected, 66.5% David Johnson (Democrat) 31.9%
Paul Hager (Libertarian) 1.6%
Maine Olympia Snowe Republican Re-elected, 68.9% Mark Lawrence (Democrat) 31.1%
Maryland Paul Sarbanes Democratic Re-elected, 63.2% Paul Rappaport (Republican) 36.7%
Massachusetts Ted Kennedy Democratic Re-elected, 72.9% Jack E. Robinson III (Republican) 12.9%
Carla Howell (Libertarian) 11.9%
Philip Lawler (Constitution) 11.9%
Dale Friedgen (Independent) 0.5%
Michigan Spencer Abraham Republican Defeated, 47.9% Debbie Stabenow (Democrat) 49.4%
Minnesota Rod Grams Republican Defeated, 43.3% Mark Dayton (Democrat) 48.8%
James Gibson (Independence) 5.8%
Mississippi Trent Lott Republican Re-elected, 65.9% Troy Brown (Democrat) 31.6%
Jim Giles (Independent) 0.9%
Missouri John Ashcroft Republican Defeated, 48.4% Mel Carnahan

3 (Democrat) 50.4%

Montana Conrad Burns Republican Re-elected, 51.6% Brian Schweitzer (Democrat) 46.2%
Gary Lee (Reform) 2.2%
Nebraska Bob Kerrey Democratic Retired: Democratic victory Ben Nelson (Democrat) 51%
Don Stenberg (Republican) 48.8%
Nevada Richard Bryan Democratic Retired: Republican victory John Ensign (Republican) 55.1%
Edward M. Bernstein (Democrat) 39.7%
None of These Candidates 1.9%
Kathy Rusco (Green) 1.7%
J.J. Johnson (Libertarian) 0.9%
Ernie Berghof (Independent American) 0.4%
Bill Grutzmacher (Citizens First) 0.3%
New Jersey Frank Lautenberg Democratic Retired: Democratic victory Jon Corzine (Democrat) 50%
Bob Franks (Republican) 50%
New Mexico Jeff Bingaman Democratic Re-elected, 61.7% William T. Redmond (Republican) 38.3%
New York Daniel Patrick Moynihan Democratic Retired: Democratic victory Hillary Rodham Clinton (Democrat) 55%
Rick Lazio (Republican) 45%
North Dakota Kent Conrad Democratic Re-elected, 61.4% Duane Sand (Republican) 38.6%
Ohio Mike DeWine Republican Re-elected, 59.9% Ted Celeste (Democrat) 35.9%
Pennsylvania Rick Santorum Republican Re-elected, 52.4% Ron Klink (Democrat) 45.5%
Rhode Island2 Lincoln Chafee Republican Re-elected, 56.8% Robert Weygand (Democrat) 41.1%
Tennessee Bill Frist Republican Re-elected, 65.1% Jeff Clark (Democrat) 32.2%
Texas Kay Bailey Hutchison Republican Re-elected, 65% Gene Kelly (Democrat) 32.3%
Utah Orrin Hatch Republican Re-elected, 65.6% Scott Howell (Democrat) 31.5%
Vermont Jim Jeffords Republican Re-elected, 65.6% Ed Flanagan (Democrat) 25.4%
Virginia Chuck Robb Democratic Defeated, 47.7% George Allen (Republican) 52.3%
Washington Slade Gorton Republican Defeated, 48.6% Maria Cantwell (Democrat) 48.7%
Jeff Jared (Libertarian) 2.6%
West Virginia Robert Byrd Democratic Re-elected, 77.7% David Gallaher (Republican) 20.2%
Joe Whelan (Libertarian) 2.1%
Wisconsin Herb Kohl Democratic Re-elected, 61.5% John Gillespie (Republican) 37%
Wyoming Craig L. Thomas Republican Re-elected, 93.7% Mel Logan (Democrat) 6.3%

1 special election held due to death of Paul Coverdell (R-Ga.) -- next regular election held in 2004.
2 Chafee had been appointed on November 2, 1999, following the death of his father, John Chafee (R-R.I.).
3 Mel Carnahan was deceased at the time of the election; his wife Jean would eventually be appointed.