Mouseovers have been added to the map. Put your mouse cursor on a state
to see the three most recent polls (if they exist).
While Mississippi is pretty far from New Hampshire, there is political action there, too.
Former governor, Ronnie Musgrove (D) is going to
newly appointed senator Roger Wicker (R) who replaced the recently retired Sen. Trent Lott.
Musgrove has won a statewide election in Mississippi and Wicker has not so this could be a real horse race.
Chuck Schumer (D-NY), chairman of the DSCC, has plenty of money to spend on races like this, whereas
his counterpart at the NRSC, Sen. John Ensign (R-NV), has a much smaller bank balance and has to
be more judicious in funding races.
Ensign is surely sore at Lott for making him spend money on what was a safe seat until a week ago.
State law calls for a special election, but the governor, Haley Barbour (R) and the attorney general,
Jim Hood (D), disagree on when state law requires the election to be held.
Hood wants it quickly (which favors the much better-known Musgrove) and Barbour
wants it in November (to give Wicker time to become better known).
The bashing of Mike Huckabee--from the Republicans--has begun.
Not a peep from the Democrats. They like Huckabee. They think he's in over his head and will be easy prey
in November, in the unlikely event he gets that far.
It's the Republican establishment that hates Huckabee. The reason is clear but the media are scared
to talk about it. The truth is what the current administration really cares about is
tax cuts, expecially big ones for the rich.
What was the first thing George Bush after Jan. 20, 2001? Tax cuts, including lowering the
top marginal rate from 39.6% to 35%. If you are making $10 million a year, that's $460,000 extra in your
pocket. After Bush's 2004 victory, he said that the election gave him political capital and he intended
to spend it. So what did he do? He spent two months traveling around the country trying to sell a plan
to privatize (read: phase out) social security. He didn't spend two months trying to get a constitutional
amendment banning abortions or forbidding same-sex marriages. He could have, but didn't want to spend his
political capital that way. Even when pleasing the Base was cheap he didn't do it.
Remember that his long-time friend, Harriet Miers, was his first Supreme Court nominee, and he asked her to
withdraw only after the Base protested loudy. The Republican party's dirty little secret is that upper
management really doesn't care much about the social issues; they care about taxes. They trot out the social
issues just before each election to whip the Base up into a frenzy and conveniently forget about them after winning.
Huckabee is a real threat because he sincerely believes in the Bible.
He's not just making it up to get votes. He's become their Frankenstein monster
and must be eliminated.
While it has been completely under the radar, today Wyoming holds Republican caucuses (Democrats hold theirs March 8).
Almost no candidate has been to Wyoming, in part because it is a huge state, with few delegates in the middle of nowhere.
It does have great scenic beauty, however. A candidate could have gone there for some R&R under the guise of campaigning
for the Wyoming caucuses, but it didn't happen. Nevertheless, Wyoming may give us a clue as to what Western
Republicans are thinking in the absence of a barrage of TV ads, flyers, and e-mails.
Below are the New Hampshire polls. The complete polls for all states are
here. Iowa is always hard to predict
because the turnout is so low (while 2008 was double 2004, it was still a small fraction of the
electorate). In Hampshire turnout is always high, but it has a different problem: it is an open
primary. When a voter walks in, the poll worker says: "Good day sir/madam, would you like a Democratic
ballot or a Republican ballot?" If the answer is: "I dunno, what do you think?" the poll worker is kind
of stuck. About 40% of the New Hampshire voters are registered as independent and many of them like
both Barack Obama and John McCain. If they ask for a Democratic ballot, it helps Obama and hurts McCain,
and vice versa. All the polls show that large numbers of New Hampshire independents like both men but
haven't decided which ballot they want yet. This makes polling unpredictable.