New Senate Polls

After their new House polls yesterday, some of which were very strange but most of which were good, Reuters and Zogby have produced a series of Senate polls. Here are the polls, along with the new five poll averages that will result from these polls and other new polls today. The new averages are in parenthesis:
  • Pennsylvania: Casey (D) 48%--36% Santorum (R) (Casey 49.4%--39.2% Santorum)
  • Maryland: Cardin (D) 45%--37% (R) Steele (Cardin 48.4%--41.0% Steele)
  • Montana: Tester (D) 46%--42% Burns (R) (Tester 48.6%--Burns 42.6%)
  • Rhode Island: Whitehouse (D) 45%--41% Chafee (R) (Whitehouse 44.6%--Chafee 40.6%)
  • Ohio: Brown (D) 41%--41% DeWine (R) (Brown 45.4%--41.6% DeWine)
  • New Jersey: Menendez (D) 45%--35% Kean (R). (Menendez 42.2%--40.6% Kean)
  • Tennessee: Ford (D) 40%--40% Corker (R) (Corker 43.2%--43.0% Ford)
  • Missouri: Talent (R) 43%--39% McCaskill (D) (Talent 45.2%--44.4% McCaskill)
  • Virginia: Allen (R) 48%--37% Webb (D) (Allen 47.8%--42.2% Webb)
  • Arizona: Kyl (R) 45%--36% Pederson (D) (Kyl 48.4%--40.0% Pederson). Note: the Arizona poll was conducted by Behavior Research Center, not Zogby)
  • Connecticut: Lieberman (R) 53%--33% Lamont (D) (Lieberman 49.0%--Lamont 40.2%)
It is certainly depressing to see the Connecticut Senate race fall behind Arizona in the five-poll average, but I have little doubt that the Zogby poll is way out of whack (it happens sometimes--at least one in every twenty polls is screwed up badly anyways). Still, it takes all of the fun out of Tester moving into a very solid position, and both Chafee Whitehouse and Menendez noticeably improving their positions. Brown's lead over DeWine dropped because the Survey USA poll showing a ten-point gap in that race fell out of the moving average. Ford's brief lead over Corker disappeared because his internal poll dropped out of the average. Certainly a mixed bag, as Cardin improved while Webb dropped, and Casey improved while Pederson dropped. More thoughts on these polls:
  • There are far more undecideds found in these surveys than in almost all other surveys right now. I simply do not believe there are that many undecideds in our current political environment.
  • Zogby isn't exactly the most reliable pollster either, even if he is from Update New York.
  • If these polls show a pattern that might be reflected by current committee strategy, they show that the Republican "firewall" strategy of all but abandoning Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Montana in favor of defending Ohio, Tennessee and Missouri might be having its desired effect for Republicans. Democrats are pulling away in the former three states, while Republicans are improving in the previous three states.
  • Republican incumbents are in a lot of trouble. Check this out:Sen. George Allen in Virginia was the only Republican incumbent with more than 40 percent of voters saying he deserved re-election. That is pretty heinous for Republicans, and very good for us. According to these polls, 60% or more of voters in Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Montana, Ohio and Missouri don't want to see Republican incumbents re-elected.
You might notice that I have labeled Lieberman an incumbent Republican (happy typo police?). As long as polling firms as the news media refuse to call him the "Connecticut for Lieberman" candidate instead of the "independent" candidate, I will engage in some inaccurate labeling myself.

Tags: polls, Senate 2006 (all tags)

Comments

13 Comments

Typo

Still, it takes all of the fun out of Tester moving into a very solid position, and both Chafee and Menendez noticeably improving their positions.

I think you've got a typo in there. Presumably it is Whitehouse's improvements you are pleased with...

You might notice that I have labeled Lieberman an incumbent.

You mean Lieberman the Republican...

by ltsply2 2006-10-05 08:55AM | 0 recs
Re: New Senate Polls

So far I haven't read poll analyses that include the way in which undecided generally break for the challenger.  If there are 10-15% undecided in all these races, and the Republican incumbent (or heir) is more or less even, such as in MO, TN and maybe VA, wouldn't history indicate that these will go blue?

by SaratogaProf 2006-10-05 09:08AM | 0 recs
Re: New Senate Polls

Are the undecided numbers kind of high? Seems like it to me. Maybe somebody smart could do the research. There are alot of voters out there who seem confident they will vote but still seem to have no clue how they will vote. Both an opportunity and a danger. It can't be good news for incumbents. But in an open seat like TN's i'm not sure how it cuts...20% still don't know? 1 in 5? Many ways to still win and lose these things with that number seemingly so high.

by DonBinTN 2006-10-05 09:11AM | 0 recs
Re: New Senate Polls

Well, I have two theories:

1.  In a race with an incumbent, most of the time undecideds will break for the challenger.  The undecideds, in general, probably made up their mind on the incumbent a while ago.  This is why it's a danger sign when an incumbent is below 50 percent.  The voters already know about the incumbent, so if less than 50 percent think he deserves reelection... he won't usually win reelection.

2.  In an open seat race, I think undecideds would usually break according to historical patterns, but not entirely.  The diehard partisans have already made up their mind.  The best performance by a Democrat in Tennessee in the last ten years was Phil Bredesen in 2002, who won 51% of the vote.  Lamar Alexander won an open Senate seat with 55% (I think) in '02 as well, but that margin had been reflected in polls.

My guess is that some of the undecideds are traditionally Democratic voters who don't always vote Democratic these days.

by Tom 2006-10-05 01:18PM | 0 recs
Re: New Senate Polls

My Prediction on the 2006 US Senate Race.
1)Arizona- Kyl(R)- 54%
           Pedersen(D)-46%
2)Connecticut- Lieberman(I)-49%
               Lamont(D)-47%
               Schlessinger(R)-4%
3)Florida- Nelson(D)-60%
           Harris(R)-40%
4)Maryland- Cardin(D)-53%
            Steele(R)-47%
5)Michigan- Stabenow(D)-56%
            Bouchard(R)-43%
6)Minnesota- Klobuchar(D)-56%
             Kennedy(R)-44%
7)Missouri- McCaskill(D)-50%
            Talent(R)-50%
8)Montana- Tester(D)-53%
           Burns(R)-47%
9)Nebraska- Nelson(D)- 61%
            Ricketts(R)- 39%
10)Nevada- Ensign(D)- 56%
           Carter(D)- 44%
11)New Jersey- Menendez(D)-51%
               Kean(R)-49%
12)Ohio- Brown(D)- 51%
         DeWine(R)- 49%
13)Pennsylvania- Casey(D)- 55%
                 Santorum(R)- 45%
14)Rhode Island- Whitehouse(D)- 52%
                 Chafee(R)- 48%
15)Tennessee-  Ford(D)- 50%
               Corker(R)-50%
16)Vermont- Sanders(I)- 64%
            Tarrant(R)- 36%
17)Virginia- Allen(R)-53%
             Webb(D)- 47%
18)Washington- Cantwell(D)-54%
               McGavick(R)-46%

Democratic Pick-up
1)Pennsylvania
2)Montana
3)Rhode Island
4)Ohio

Too Close to Call
5)Tennessee
6)Missouri

by CMBurns 2006-10-05 10:32AM | 0 recs
Re: New Senate Polls

Sigh.  With all the oddball polls thrown out, it looks like CMBurns is right up above.  We keep MD and NJ as well as picking up PA, MT, RI, and OH. If we can get to a 50-50 tie I think we are in good shape, because Joe can caucus with us to keep it tied at 50, like Jeffords.  If we get to 51-49, he might go the other way, for the same reason.  In either case, we might end up with a split.

How will that effect chairmanships?  Subpoena power?

by Robert P 2006-10-05 11:01AM | 0 recs
Re: New Senate Polls

The must win Senate races for Democrats are
Missouri- McCaskill
Tennessee- Ford
Virginia- Webb

assuming Democrats hold on to MD,NJ, and pick up PA,MT,RI,and OH.

Virginia- will be a safety seat if Lieberman defeats to the GOP.

by CMBurns 2006-10-05 11:11AM | 0 recs
They will crucify the blogs if Liberman wins

...so we need to make sure he loses.

by MNPundit 2006-10-05 11:24AM | 0 recs
Re: New Senate Polls

Arizona is still possible. I saw Jim Pederson with General Wesley Clark last week and the momentum is definetly building. Democrats in this state need to look at the big picture. If John Kyl stays in the Senate 2 more years it give George Bush a yes vote on anything he wants, torture, billions more for a failed war, and broader presidential powers.

by misd1925 2006-10-05 12:02PM | 0 recs
Re: New Senate Polls

There's also a new poll today by Strategic Vision (R): Kean 46 Menendez 41.

IMO the must-win senate state is Ohio. Simply because I'm sure Hackett would have won that race given the GOP problems in the state, and that Hackett's personality fit much better in ousting an incumbent. I realize Brown has led every poll for months, and he has run a far superior campaign than I expected other than the wimpy strategic torture vote, but I'm still worried that he is simply too liberal for a statewide race and the undecideds will break to DeWine as the persistent underdog.

by jagakid 2006-10-05 12:04PM | 0 recs
Money was a big issue with Hackett

Brown started the campaign off with over $2 million in the bank. Hackett had to basically raise money from scratch. Hackett is a good man, but he would be in the same situation as Webb right now - badly, badly outgunned by the incumbent. There is no way anybody can reliably say Hackett would be performing better than Brown at this point. Brown's campaign has been aggressive and financially competitive.

by OfficeOfLife 2006-10-05 02:21PM | 0 recs
Re: New Senate Polls

Funny how the one who seems most ashamed of being a Democrat (McCaskill), appears to be the one doing worse than expected.  

Any voter who would like McCaskill better because she hides being a Democrat and says shit like "Hillary can't win Missouri" (btw, way to further the false Republican narrative, Claire), would not vote for her anyway.  They'd just stick with Talent.  

When the fuck are Democrats going to realize this?

by jgarcia 2006-10-05 01:57PM | 0 recs
by estebban 2006-12-25 11:52PM | 0 recs

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