News from the Votemaster
Over time, some pollsters have come to believe that the question "Who do you expect will win?" has more predictive value than "Who will you vote for?" If, for example, a person is a Democrat in an area full of Republican yard signs or vice versa, the "Who do you expect to win?" question takes into account local information that the voter has about friends, neighbors, and so on. Using this question, for example,, Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS) is in better shape than polls indicate. If the "expectation" survey holds, the Republicans are likely to get 52 or 53 seats in the Senate.
It is not exactly news, but yet another poll shows that Americans don't like Congress much. Half of all Americans strongly disapprove of the job Congress is doing. About 30% approve of the job the Democrats are doing and 25% approve of the job the Republicans are doing. On the whole, most voters like what their own party is doing though. Democratic voters approve of the Democrats in Congress 56-42; Republican voters approve of Republicans in Congress 55-38.
The two biggest and most influential newspapers in Kentucky have both endorsed Alison Lundergan Grimes in her race against Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY). The Louisville Courier-Journal wrote: "We urge voters to choose the future and elect Alison Lundergan Grimes." The Lexington Herald Leader wrote: "Kentuckians can send a powerful message on Nov. 4 and carve out a better future by retiring McConnell and making Grimes their senator."
Newspaper endorsements don't carry anywhere near the weight they used to. Nevertheless, in a race as close as this one, if the endorsements sway even one percent of the voters, it could matter. To some extent, McConnell made it easy for them to endorse his opponent as he refused to sit down with their editorial boards and answer their questions, as Grimes did.
In 2008, political guru Charlie Cook said six races were tossups at this point in the cycle. In 2010, it was seven. This year Cook says there are 10 tossups. While this situation is exciting for political junkies, it puts the party committees in a bind: where to spend precious dollars? Chris Cillizza, Aaron Blake, and Sean Sullivan rate the 13 states most likely to flip as follows, from most likely to least likely: Montana (D), West Virginia (D), South Dakota (D), Arkansas (D), Louisiana (D), Alaska (D), Colorado (D), Kansas (R), Iowa (D), Georgia (R), North Carolina (D), New Hampshire (D), and Kentucky (R). The (D) or (R) indicates the party that occupies the seat now.
Marist polls released yesterday put five states in the "too close to call" category. They are: North Carolina, Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, and Kansas.
Evangelical leaders realize that they got Republican presidential candidates in 2008 and 2012 who basically ignored them, in large part because they didn't settle on a single candidate to work for during the primaries. They are determined to avoid that fate in 2016. In a series of clandestine meetings over the past 2 months, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee have been auditioning for the role of standard bearer for the evangelicals. Of course understanding the problem doesn't mean a solution is at hand. Cruz supporters question Huckabee's fiscal record. Huckabee's supporters doubt Cruz' ability to connect with religious voters. In addition, if former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum joins the mix, some religious leaders will go for him. In other words, while all evangelical leaders realize that having a single candidate would greatly increase their influence, they aren't very close to having one.
The eldest son of former Florida governor Jeb Bush yesterday said that his father is seriously thinking of running for President in 2016. He added that if he had been asked a few years ago, he would have said it was unlikely. Bush would face serious obstacles if he were to decide to run. To many Republicans, his policies on immigration and the Common Core educational standards are anathema. However, in the absence of Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ), many large donors would shower money on him.
The other Bushes--the ones who count, Bush 41 and Bush 43, are all in favor of Bush 45. George H.W. Bush always thought Jeb was the smartest of his children, with ambition to spare. On the other hand, Bush vs. Clinton would sound a lot like 1992, and the Bushes know how that one ended.
When big tech companies in Silicon Valley like Facebook, Google, and Yahoo! started to get involved in politics, they didn't realize how tricky it could be. Initially they teamed up with ALEC, a conservative group that aligns with their views of immigration. But they soon discovered that ALEC also opposes renewable energy, which got them into hot water with many of their executives and employees back in California. Long-time political operatives are very cynical. They will cozy up to anyone if that helps get a certain bill through Congress, and then switch sides on the next issue. This kind of horse trading and back stabbing is par for the course in Washington, but it is new to the tech giants who are just getting started there.
A somewhat obscure Pentagon office has spent $85 million since 2009 on programs to help overseas troops vote. Some states are experimenting with what is essentially online voting, a practice that virtually all security experts say is vulnerable to hacking. It also violates federal law. As a consequence of the movement to online voting, the Pentagon's inspector general. Jon Rymer, is taking a close look at the systems already in place. It is a slippery slope from letting overseas voters print absentee ballots and then sign them and mail them in to full electronic voting.
Here is a massive poll dump from YouGov and Marist.
|State||Democrat||D %||Republican||R %||I||I %||Start||End||Pollster|
|Alaska||Mark Begich*||44%||Dan Sullivan||48%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Arkansas||Mark Pryor*||42%||Tom Cotton||47%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Arkansas||Mark Pryor*||43%||Tom Cotton||45%||Oct 19||Oct 23||Marist Coll.|
|Colorado||Mark Udall*||45%||Cory Gardner||46%||Oct 18||Oct 22||Marist Coll.|
|Colorado||Mark Udall*||47%||Cory Gardner||46%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Delaware||Chris Coons*||54%||Kevin Wade||36%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Georgia||Michelle Nunn||44%||David Perdue||47%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Hawaii||Brian Schatz*||70%||Cam Cavasso||18%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Iowa||Bruce Braley||44%||Joni Ernst||44%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Iowa||Bruce Braley||46%||Joni Ernst||49%||Oct 18||Oct 22||Marist Coll.|
|Idaho||Nels Mitchell||30%||Jim Risch*||61%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Illinois||Dick Durbin*||52%||Jim Oberweis||39%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Kansas||Pat Roberts*||42%||Greg Orman||38%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Kansas||%||Pat Roberts*||44%||Greg Orman||45%||Oct 18||Oct 22||Marist Coll.|
|Kentucky||Alison L-Grimes||39%||Mitch McConnell*||45%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Louisiana||Mary Landrieu*||42%||Bill Cassidy||46%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Massachusetts||Ed Markey*||54%||Brian Herr||32%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Maine||Shenna Bellows||30%||Susan Collins*||65%||Oct 15||Oct 21||U. of New Hampshire|
|Maine||Shenna Bellows||35%||Susan Collins*||54%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Michigan||Gary Peters||49%||Terri Land||41%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Michigan||Gary Peters||51%||Terri Land||42%||Oct 20||Oct 22||Rasmussen|
|Minnesota||Al Franken*||48%||Mike McFadden||39%||Oct 20||Oct 22||Mason Dixon|
|Minnesota||Al Franken*||51%||Mike McFadden||41%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Mississippi||Travis Childers||28%||Thad Cochran*||50%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Montana||Amanda Curtis||38%||Steve Daines||56%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|North Carolina||Kay Hagan*||43%||Thom Tillis||43%||Sean Haugh||7%||Oct 19||Oct 23||Marist Coll.|
|North Carolina||Kay Hagan*||44%||Thom Tillis||41%||Sean Haugh||2%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Nebraska||Dave Domina||30%||Ben Sasse||59%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|New Hampshire||Jeanne Shaheen*||46%||Scott Brown||41%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|New Jersey||Cory Booker*||51%||Jeff Bell||39%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|New Mexico||Tom Udall*||52%||Allen Weh||36%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Oklahoma||Matt Silverstein||27%||James Inhofe*||63%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Oregon||Jeff Merkley*||51%||Monica Wehby||39%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Rhode Island||Jack Reed*||65%||Mark Zaccaria||20%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|South Carolina||Brad Hutto||28%||Lindsey Graham*||43%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|South Dakota||Rick Weiland||25%||Mike Rounds||38%||Larry Pressler||17%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|South Dakota||Rick Weiland||29%||Mike Rounds||43%||Larry Pressler||16%||Oct 19||Oct 23||Marist Coll.|
|Tennessee||Gordon Ball||33%||Lamar Alexander*||55%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Texas||David Alameel||35%||John Cornyn*||57%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Virginia||Mark Warner*||49%||Ed Gillespie||39%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|West Virginia||Natalie Tennant||34%||Shelley M. Capito||56%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
|Wyoming||Charlie Hardy||27%||Michael Enzi*||67%||Oct 16||Oct 23||YouGov|
* Denotes incumbent
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Oct26 2014 Is the Year of the Independent
Oct26 Armies of Poll Watchers Are Being Mobilized for Election Day
Oct26 A GOP Senate Would Lead to Endless Battles on Many Issues
Oct25 Republican Pollster Gives Begich Massive Lead in Alaska
Oct25 Joni Ernst Skips Meeting with the Des Moines Register
Oct25 Could Michelle Nunn Actually Win in Georgia?
Oct25 Angus King Might Switch Parties
Oct25 Conservative Group Tries to Get North Carolina Democrats to Vote for Libertarian
Oct24 Wasserman Schultz Says Obama is Campaigning, but Is Unable to Say Where
Oct24 Is 2014 a Wave Year?
Oct24 Hillary Clinton Tries Out Populist Theme
Oct23 Does the Ground Game Really Matter?
Oct23 Who Is Being Attacked Most?
Oct23 Koch Brothers Soften Their Ads
Oct23 DSCC Spending Again in Kentucky
Oct23 Takeaways from the final Scott-Crist Debate in Florida
Oct23 Judges Make Rulings with an Eye to Future Attack Ads
Oct23 Political Animosity Exceeds Racial Hostility
Oct22 Republicans Doing Well in Early Voting
Oct22 Pew Study Examines Media Habits by Political Persuasion
Oct22 Republican Attacks on Illegal Immigration Could Help in 2014, Hurt in 2016
Oct22 Wisconsin Gubernatorial Race Could Impact 2016
Oct22 Battle for the NRSC Chairmanship Has Already Started
Oct22 Jeb Bush Could Tolerate Tax Increases as Part of a Deal
Oct21 Obama Voted Yesterday
Oct21 Michelle Obama Hits the Campaign Trail
Oct21 Republicans Are Improving Their Ground Game
Oct21 Republicans Are More Skeptical About Ebola Response than Democrats
Oct21 Tiny Island Near Russia Could Determine Control of the Senate
Oct21 More on Voter ID Laws
Oct21 Ted Cruz Announces His 2016 Platform
Oct20 Gubernatorial Races Hotter than Senate Races
Oct20 Obama Finally Hits the Campaign Trail
Oct20 Warren Campaigns in Colorado
Oct20 The Most Polarized Voters Are Also the Most Likely Vote
Oct20 Holding Local Elections in Even-numbered Years Could Increase Turnout
Oct20 Romney Leading the 2016 Republican Polls
Oct19 Supreme Court Says Texas May Enforce Voter ID Law in November
Oct19 In Final Stretch, No Pattern is Emerging
Oct19 Black Turnout Could Be the Deciding Factor in Many Races
Oct19 Many Transgender Americans May Lose the Right to Vote Due to ID Laws
Oct19 Hillary Clinton Tests 2016 Themes
Oct18 Pollster Who Worked for Romney Reflects on What He Learned in 2012
Oct18 Bill Clinton Is Trying to Save Pryor
Oct18 Republicans Attack New Ebola Czar
Oct18 Wife of Gov. Christie Earned Half a Million on Wall Street
Oct17 Only 25% of Registered Voters Have Been Contacted
Oct17 Democrats Trying to Paint David Perdue as a Mini-Mitt
Oct17 Ebola Has Been Hugely Politicized