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Senate Dem 50   GOP 47   Ties 3
House Dem 202   GOP 203   Ties 30

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strong Dem Strong Dem (48)
weak Dem Weak Dem (2)
barely Dem Barely Dem (0)
tied Exactly tied (3)
barely GOP Barely GOP (2)
weak GOP Weak GOP (5)
strong GOP Strong GOP (40)
strong Ind Strong Ind (0)
weak Ind Weak Ind (0)
barely Ind Barely Ind (0)
Map algorithm explained
Senate polls today: DE FL IL NC NV OR SC WA WI WV RSS
Dem pickups: (None) GOP pickups: AR CO IN ND PA WI PDA

PW logo Sink Retakes Lead in Nevada Dead Heat in Vermont
Poll Offers Sliver of Hope for Democrats Manchin Holds Double-Digit Lead
Dayton Leads in Minnesota Sandoval Maintains Wide Lead in Nevada

News from the Votemaster            

IPhone App Available for electoral-vote.com     Permalink

There seems to be an iPhone app for everything, and now there is one for this site. If you want to follow the polling data on your iPhone, you can get the app here.

Polls That Omit Cell Phones May be Biased     Permalink

A new study from the Pew Research Center notes that a quarter of U.S. households no longer have landlines--and thus cannot be reached by pollsters who use only landlines. None of the automated pollsters, which includes Rasmussen, SurveyUSA, and PPP, call cell phones and thus have to correct for this effect. If cell-phone-only households voted the same way as landline households, missing them wouldn't matter, but there is an increasing amount of evidence that cell-only households are more Democratic than landline households. In a recent poll, Pew tried to determine the amount of this effect by interviewing 2816 registered voters of whom 786 were called on their cell phone. Among landline voters the Republicans led by 1%. Among cell-only voters, the Democrats led by 3%. When only likely voters were counted, a similar bias was encountered. Polls in March and June of this year showed this effect as well, but the poll in the middle of the summer did not show it. With a 4-point bias among 25% of the population, the total effect on the poll could be around 1%.

All Eyes on Showdown Between O'Donnell and Coons     Permalink

All eyes? That's what CNN said in its headline. Why would all eyes be on O'Donnell and Coons? Is this a competitive race? Not at all. A slew of polls puts Coons 15% ahead. Chris Cilllizza of the Washington Post gives three reasons "explaining" the media's fascination with O'Donnell: (1) She upset the favorite in the race (but so did Sharron Angle and she is not a media sensation), (2) she has said plenty of wacky things (but so has Angle), and (3) she is very different from everyone else running for office this year (Angle is hardly a generic Republican). So what gives? Maybe the truth is staring everyone in the face but nobody dares to say it: Angle is 61 and with flaming red (obviously dyed) hair, is kind of strange looking and clearly not a beauty queen (although she beat one, Sue Lowden, in the Republican primary). In contrast, although O'Donnell is 41, she could easily pass for 30 and is strikingly attractive. Could it be that something in the glass of television camera lenses makes them automatically point at good-looking women? While not provable, this hypothesis is probably as good as any at explaining why a debate between an unknown, boring County Executive and a cute nonwitch is national news, especially when the results of this election are pretty well known already.

Anyway, the debate was broadcast on national television last night. As expected, Coons was boring and O'Donnell hemmed and hawed and tried to avoid saying anything of substance. When Wolf Blitzer asked her: "What would you cut in the federal budget? And don't just say waste, fraud and abuse, because everybody says that" she said she would cut waste, fraud and abuse. She was also easily flummoxed by easy questions. When she railed against activist judges, Blitzer asked her to name one recent Supreme Court decision she disagreed with and she couldn't name even one. It is hard to imagine that many votes were changed by the debate.

Brown and Whitman Engage in a Blistering Debate     Permalink

In a different debate--one that actually meant something--California gubernatorial candidates Jerry Brown (D) and Meg Whitman (R) really went after each other Tuesday night. The two are both plausible candidates in a close race. They sparred over tax issues (Whitman wants to eliminate the state's estate tax; Brown says that would mostly help millionaires), environmental laws (Whitman wants to study the matter; Brown wants to enforce them), and whether an unknown aide of Brown's calling Whitman a "whore" was worse than former California governor Pete Wilson calling the members of Congress "whores." The issue of maidgate also came up, with moderator Tom Brokaw asking Whitman how, if she could not find an illegal immigrant working in her own home, she expected businesses to do so. The four more recent nonpartisan polls in the race have given Brown leads of 5%, 4%, 7%, and 9%, suggesting that he is slightly ahead.

Bipartisan Majority Favors Ending Bush Tax Cuts for the Wealthy     Permalink

A new poll shows that when doing a poll, the devil is in the details (as usual). When the pollster asked people if they were in favor of extending the Bush tax cuts, 54% said yes, with strong support from Republicans and strong opposition from Democrats. But when the question was reworded to ask if the respondent supported continuing the middle-class tax cuts while letting the tax cuts for people earning more than $250,000 expire, 65% of the Democrats, 64% of the Republicans, and 63% of the independents were in favor. With such strong majorities in favor of this approach, it is incredible that the Democrats in Congress threw away a golden opportunity to force the Republicans to vote on eliminating the tax cuts for the rich. This could have been the dominant election issue as we go down to the wire. Instead, the vote has been put off until a lame-duck session of Congress after the election.

Voters Camped Out to Vote Early in Tennessee     Permalink

Early voting began in Tennessee yesterday. Some voters demonstrated their passion for democracy by camping out in front of a precinct in Nashville starting at 7 P.M. Tuesday. While camping out for tickets to concerts and sports events is common, to do so in order to vote--when an early vote doesn't count any more than one cast on election day--is fairly unusual.

Republicans Leading in 8 out of 10 Open House Districts     Permalink

New polls from Penn Schoen Berland in 10 open House races put the Republicans ahead in 8 of them. This is just another sign that the Republicans will do very well on Nov. 2. The results of the polls are given below.

For the first time, our running count of House seats puts the Republicans ahead, with 203 seats to the Democrats' 202. The remaining 30 districts have not been polled and were close enough last time that it is hard to make a realistic call. If the 30 seats split evenly, the Republicans will have a 1-seat majority in the House. However, experience shows that in wave years, one party usually wins most of the close races. So if the Republicans win 2/3 of the 30, they would end up with 223 seats to the Democrats 212. But there are still almost 3 weeks to go, and in politics, a week is a long time.

Today's Polls: DE FL IL NC NV OR SC WA WI WV + 18 House polls     Permalink

New Senate Polls

State Democrat D % Republican R % I I % Start End Pollster
Delaware Chris Coons 54% Christine O-Donnell 33%     Oct 11 Oct 12 SurveyUSA
Delaware Chris Coons 57% Christine O-Donnell 38%     Oct 08 Oct 12 Opinion Research
Florida Kendrick Meek 22% Marco Rubio 44% Charlie Crist 30% Oct 06 Oct 10 Quinnipiac U.
Illinois Alexi Giannoulias 37% Mark Kirk 37%     Sep 30 Oct 10 Paul Simon Public Policy
North Carolina Elaine Marshall 38% Richard Burr* 52%     Oct 12 Oct 12 Rasmussen
Nevada Harry Reid* 46% Sharron Angle 43%     Oct 08 Oct 11 Suffolk U.
Nevada Harry Reid* 48% Sharron Angle 49%     Oct 11 Oct 11 Rasmussen
Oregon Ron Wyden* 52% Jim Huffman 36%     Oct 10 Oct 10 Rasmussen
South Carolina Alvin Greene 11% Jim DeMint* 58%     Oct 05 Oct 10 Winthrop U.
Washington Patty Murray* 51% Dino Rossi 43%     Oct 08 Oct 12 Opinion Research
Wisconsin Russ Feingold* 42% Ron Johnson 51%     Oct 11 Oct 11 Rasmussen
Wisconsin Russ Feingold* 44% Ron Johnson 52%     Oct 08 Oct 12 Opinion Research
West Virginia Joe Manchin 42% John Raese 39%     Oct 02 Oct 07 Penn Schoen Berland
West Virginia Joe Manchin 44% John Raese 44%     Oct 08 Oct 12 Opinion Research
West Virginia Joe Manchin 46% John Raese 49%     Oct 12 Oct 12 Rasmussen

New House Polls

CD Democrat D % Republican R % I I % Start End Pollster
AK-AL Harry Crawford 36% Don Young* 58%     Oct 09 Oct 10 PPP
AR-01 Chad Causey 34% Rick Crawford 46%     Oct 05 Oct 07 Penn Schoen Berland
HI-01 Colleen Hanabusa 41% Charles Djou* 45%     Oct 02 Oct 07 Penn Schoen Berland
IL-10 Daniel Seals 49% Robert Dold 37%     Oct 02 Oct 07 Penn Schoen Berland
MI-01 Gary McDowell 39% Dan Benishek 42%     Oct 02 Oct 07 Penn Schoen Berland
NH-02 Ann McLane Kuster 42% Charlie Bass 45%     Oct 05 Oct 07 Penn Schoen Berland
NJ-12 Rush Holt* 51% Scott Sipprelle 46%     Oct 09 Oct 12 Monmouth U.
NY-01 Tim Bishop* 51% Randy Altschuler 39%     Oct 06 Oct 10 Siena Coll.
NY-19 John Hall* 43% Nan Hayworth 46%     Oct 05 Oct 10 Siena Coll.
NY-23 Bill Owens* 44% Matt Doheny 39%     Oct 05 Oct 07 Siena Coll.
PA-07 Bryan Lentz 39% Patrick Meehan 40%     Oct 02 Oct 07 Penn Schoen Berland
PA-11 Paul Kanjorski* 40% Lou Barletta 47%     Oct 05 Oct 10 Franklin+Marshall Coll.
RI-01 David Cicilline 47% John Loughlin 36%     Oct 04 Oct 06 Quest Research
RI-02 Jim Langevin* 65% Mark Zaccaria 26%     Oct 04 Oct 06 Quest Research
TN-08 Roy Herron 37% Stephen Fincher 47%     Oct 02 Oct 07 Penn Schoen Berland
WA-03 Denny Heck 40% Jaime Herrera 42%     Oct 02 Oct 07 Penn Schoen Berland
WI-07 Julie Lassa 35% Sean Duffy 44%     Oct 02 Oct 07 Penn Schoen Berland
WV-01 Mike Oliverio 42% David McKinley 39%     Oct 02 Oct 07 Penn Schoen Berland

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