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Former Pennsylvania Governor, Ed Rendell (D) I man I used to respect, recently opened his big mouth and complained that Senator Bob Casey Jr. (D) hasn't been campaigning and that he's only released one ad (which is not true), hence why the polls have tightened between him and Tea Party Tom Smith.  Grant it Casey's been spending more time raising campaign cash (and has been kicking ass and taking names) because Smith, who's net worth is between $60-70 million has been funding his own campaign.  PPP and the Philadelphia Inquirer showed Casey with a double digit lead.  A lot of other polls have showed the race tightening but according to the Casey's internal polling conducted by Garin-Hart-Yang Research Group has Casey beating Smith by 13 points:

The survey, conducted for Casey's campaign by Garin-Hart-Yang Research Group, shows the senator with 52 percent support to Smith's 39 percent.

Casey has been heavily favored in the race, but a number of recent polls have indicated that the contest has tightened, helped by the $17 million of personal wealth Smith is putting behind his bid. A Quinnipiac poll earlier this week showed a dead heat, with Casey beating Smith just 48 percent to 45 percent, and a Muhlenberg College/Allentown Morning Call poll put Casey's lead at just 41 percent to 39 percent.

A polling memo indicates that Casey has a 47 percent to 35 percent advantage among independent voters, and that he is winning white voters by five points (though it does not provide specific numbers).

The Garin-Hart-Yang Research Group poll surveyed 604 likely voters from Oct. 15-17, and has a margin of error of plus-or-minus 4 percentage points. - National Journal, 10/19/12

I've always believed that Casey would win this race but I was worried that Tea Party Tom Smith's self-funded campaign would cause a headache.  And of course the GOP owned Susquehanna poll that came out today shows Smith and Romney ahead but they are oversampling republican polls and basing their methodology on voter turnout in PA reflecting more like 2004 than 2008:

There are two major ways to poll. The first is to conduct surveys in relative proportion to population demographics like age, geography, race, gender, etc. Then, when all that matches the population at large, let respondents give their own party identification.

The second is to include quotas for party ID along with other demographic information. Those party quotas are based on turnout estimates.

SP&R’s pollster James Lee has explained that his firm uses a turnout model based on 2004, when George W. Bush came within 2.5 points of beating John Kerry in Pa.

In this poll, 48 percent of respondents identified as Republicans and 42 percent as Democrats.

However, even if you believe that SP&R is slanted toward the right (and many people do, as their polls have consistently shown Romney doing better in Pa. than other contemporary polls have), SP&R’s trend line is clear.

Here’s a look at the firm’s recent polls for President.

Oct. 4-6: Obama 47, Romney 45
Sept. 18-20: Obama 47, Romney 45
Sept. 15-17: Obama 48, Romney 47
July 19-23: Obama 46, Romney 43

And here’s a look at their recent polls for U.S. Senate:

Oct. 4-6: Casey 46, Smith 44
Sept. 18-20: Casey 46, Smith 41
Sept. 15-17: Casey 45, Smith 42
- Politics PA, 10/19/12

Casey is and has taken Smith seriously and he's upping the ante now more than ever.  Casey has been endorsed by the AFL-CIO, League Of Conservation Voters, the Philadelphia Inquirer and Pittsburgh Tribune-Review for his continued hard work to help Pennsylvania's economy, middle-class, veterans, small businesses, organized labor and environment.  Tea Party Tom Smith has been endorsed by FreedomWorks and the Tea Party Express and supports tax breaks for himself and his fellow millionaires and billionaires and favors dismantling medicare and Social Security.  Help keep the momentum on Casey's side:

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Originally posted to pdc on Fri Oct 19, 2012 at 11:30 AM PDT.

Also republished by DKos Pennsylvania.

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