As I predicted, Merkley wins his seat in the Senate race: Republican Falls in Oregon Senate Race. So, we officially have 57 seats.
In other good news, Alegre and Campskunk at Alegre's Corner point out that we have a shot at the Alaska Seante seat after all, even if Stevens manages to pull out this immediate win: Let's Welcome Our 57th Dem Senator, Jeff Merkley. Read the comments for the details, but it turns out that if a Senator or House Representative needs to be replaced in Alaska, the governor can't just appoint someone to fill the slot. A special election must be called within three months at the outside. So, the scenario is Stevens must step down due to his multiple felony convictions, Gov. Palin can scrounge amongst her political allies in Alaska to try to get a stand in but that person won't have very long to make a claim to the seat because a special election must be called so quickly. The current Democrat, Begich, is the front-runner and likely to win that election.
We're going to get that seat one way or the other.
Also, Chambliss continues not to receive 50% of the vote in Georgia, throwing it to a run-off election and Minnesota is setting up for a full recount. Dems better be prepared to go all out in Georgia to defeat Chambliss. It is pay back time.
Someone needs to go wine and dine the senators from Maine and make them a few offers they cannot refuse, such as promises of some plum committee assignments, if they will pull a Jeffords and go Independent to caucus with the Democrats. I'm sure there are a few assignments currently belonging to Joe Lieberman that he's not making very good use of and which might tempt one or the other of them, don't you?