Broders versus Voters
by Matt Stoller, Fri Aug 18, 2006 at 10:10:01 AM EDT
There's lots of new and interesting information out on the Lieberman-Lamont race. There's the Quinnipiac poll and the Survey USA. What I found interesting in the polling is that it somewhat invalidates the idea that there's popular support for a McCain-Lieberman type unity platform. The open-ended question of why Lieberman does or does not deserve to be reelected in the Q-poll had some fascinating data that suggests as much.
5% of voters believe that Lieberman deserves to be reelected because he's non-partisan and reaches out to the other party, versus 15% who think he deserves reelection because he's honest, another 16% because he's experienced, and another 23% just because he's doing a good job.
On the flip side, 12% think he cares too much about himself, 9% think he's too close to Bush, 7% think he's too right-wing, and 24% think he has the wrong position on Iraq.
Only 5% of Lieberman supporters like his bipartisanship. That's it. Apparently the politics of unity don't matter to voters, they only matter to Broders. That means that the main message from the Lieberman camp, that he is above party, is something that even his supporters do not find convincing as a reason to vote for him. Interestingly, twice as many independents as either Democrats or Republicans think Lieberman should lose because he's been there for too long, which supports our thesis that independents are 'change election' voters.
Most of Lieberman's support falls into the 'he's a good guy' bucket, which is an undefined feeling that Joe is just kind of a part of Connecticut. There is an opportunity here to crack that feeling, since Lieberman is in fact all over the place on his politics and there is substantial sentiment that he's selfish. Just who is Joe Lieberman? Clearly he's someone who hates Lamont. But is he really above party? The voters aren't buying that as a good reason for reelection, so it's time to point out that no one really knows who he is. Let's crack the glass jaw of Joe Lieberman's principle.
Connecticut for Lieberman.