PA-Sen: Specter Weak In The General
by Todd Beeton, Mon May 04, 2009 at 11:22:28 AM EDT
A new Quinnipiac University poll gets a bit ahead of itself by not even entertaining the notion that Arlen Specter will be challenged for the Democratic nomination. Hopefully, Joe Sestak will have something to say about that in the coming months but in the meantime, here's a sort of baseline post-switch poll by which to gauge the race moving forward and it's really not great news for Specter.
According to the poll, Specter predictably beats Pat Toomey by a large margin and is statistically tied against former governor Tom Ridge, who is reportedly mulling jumping in to the Republican primary, but look at Specter's numbers here:
Barely above 50% against Toomey? Really? That's pathetic. And if Ridge gets in the race, Specter's share of all voting groups goes down including, significantly, Independents and Democrats.
Independent voters, who back Sen. Specter over Toomey 45 - 36 percent, switch to Ridge 47 - 37 percent if he becomes a candidate. The former Republican Governor also gets 14 percent of the Democratic vote, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University poll finds.
With Specter as the nominee, there will be little case to be made that he would be a better Senator than Ridge as both are considered moderates except, of course, that one of them has revealed himself to be a sell-out for political expediency while the other has not. If Arlen Sepcter is challenged for the Democratic nomination, whatever candidate emerges will have had to prove his Democratic bona fides and thus stake out a position more clearly to the left of Ridge. Any Democrat can beat Toomey but as long as a Ridge candidacy is possible, it's even more important that there is a contested Democratic primary next year.