Senate Republicans are looking strong going into the 2012 election, poised to pick up enough states to create a four-seat majority and possibly a filibuster-proof lead if the eventual GOP presidential nominee routs President Obama, according to party leaders and a new election analysis.

“Barring an unexpected reelection landslide by President Obama, Republicans are at least slightly favored to take the Senate. It’s just a basic matter of numbers,” says Larry Sabato, the University of Virginia political analyst, in a new report.

He predicts that Republicans are likely to win Republican Senate seats in North Dakota, Missouri, Montana, and Nebraska. He also sees chances for the GOP to take seats in Virginia, New Mexico and Wisconsin. A sweep would give the Republicans 54 Senate seats and make Sen. Mitch McConnell the majority leader.

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