In it, but not of it. TPM DC

So far Alison Lundergan Grimes has fared remarkably well against Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell in conservative-friendly Kentucky during a conservative-friendly year.

But lately there have been signs of trouble for the underdog Democrat, even as she remains upbeat about her chances. Two more of them emerged on Friday.

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A month ago, Missouri GOP prosecutor Brian Stumpe had less than $100 on hand in his campaign to unseat Cole County Circuit Court Judge Patricia Joyce, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Now, just a few weeks later, he has received $100,000 -- all of it funneled into his campaign by a national group, the Republican State Leadership Committee, which has spent a total of $200,000 so far in this race for a single state judgeship.

So just what the heck is going on? Democrats and liberals on the ground in Missouri would tell you that somebody is trying to purchase the judgeship, and they have some suspicions about some Koch-esque Missouri multi-millionaires who might be behind the RSLC's interest in the race.

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Ebola is a terrible disease that has ravaged West Africa and taken a life in America. It seems evident that some breach of protocol allowed a Texas nurse to travel from Dallas to Cleveland and back after she had helped treat an Ebola patient but before she started showing symptoms herself. Mistakes have been certainly made, as they say.

But Ebola is also virtually no threat to the general U.S. population. The flu has and will kill many more people. Ebola has taken one life in the United States and the number of infected Americans is literally in the single digits. And as Atlanta's Emory University Hospital, which has housed two Ebola patients who recovered and didn't infect anyone else, has shown, the American health care system can contain the disease.

It isn't a surprise to see conservative media beating the drum of conspiracy and incompetence. But now, with all perspective and nuance being tossed aside, the more mainstream media is starting to pick it up, too.

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The race for Senate control is very close and there's a significant chance that Americans won't know on election night which party controls the Senate.

It may even remain an open question until after the next Congress convenes on Jan. 3, 2015.

That uncertainty could spark chaos in the lame-duck session and hit pause on Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's (R-KY) plans to redecorate the majority leader's ornate suite.

Forecasters roundly give Republicans an edge to win the net six seats they need to claim the Senate majority. The New York Times sees a one-third chance that the race will end in a 50-50 tie or be decided by a one-seat margin.

Here are four plausible scenarios that could push the Senate fight into overtime.

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