The weekend edition of the Wrap is a bit on the light side today, in contrast to the deluge of data and stories that marked the entire week here at the Wrap.
That is not to say, however, that there aren't numbers to note. You can possibly add another GOP-held House seat to the target lists (especially if the Dem candidate's internal polling is legit, and you might be able to scratch one Dem-held seat off of the target lists, if a public poll is correct.
Also, courtesy of a heads-up bit of investigation from a Kossack and Swing State fan, we have a little info about a rookie pollster who put one Democratic freshman in deep peril earlier this week.
All that (and more!) in the weekend edition of the Wrap...
FL-Sen: Crist fires back hard at GOP "audit"
You might recall that a while back, the Florida Republican Party released an audit of their financial records under previous RPOF head (and Charlie Crist ally) Jim Greer, alleging a number of irregularities. The candidate decided to fire back today, releasing records which would seem to counter one of the charges within that audit. He demanded an apology (good luck with that, Governor), and took a sideways shot at the party, saying their time would be better served investigating the financial irregularities of their own nominee, Marco Rubio.
KS-Sen: Open seat race a non-starter, according to SurveyUSA
It is doubtful that too many folks had the open-seat Senate race in the Sunflower State as a potential pickup opportunity, but new numbers out of the state from SurveyUSA make that pessimism appear totally justified. The SUSA poll puts GOP Congressman Jerry Moran at 66% of the vote, with Democratic nominee Lisa Johnston lagging well behind at 24%.
OH-Sen: Pessimistic Q poll claims Portman is up 20 in Buckeye State
The same Quinnipiac poll that had Republicans dominant in the gubernatorial election has a rather predictable result in the Senate election, as well. The pollster has Republican Rob Portman at 55% of the vote, and Democratic Lt. Governor Lee Fisher at 35% of the vote. Of course, as noted in Thursday's edition of the Wrap, the sample here has one hell of a slant, with a R-to-D ratio that appears to be more vast than any exit poll in Ohio in recent memory (including 1994).
WI-Sen: GOP nominee Johnson--stimulus hypocrite (yes...again)
This guy is almost unreal: right-wing and "small government" advocate Ron Johnson, the Republican nominee challenging third-term Democratic Senator Russ Feingold, has made no secret of his contempt for the Obama stimulus bill. So, given past GOP precedent on the matter, it should surprise absolutely no one that Johnson, as the head of the board for a local opera house, lobbied to get a seven-figure grant from stimulus funds to renovate said opera house.
Please...make every effort to mask your surprise.
KS-04: Dem internal has it as a toss-up, even SUSA has it close
When the Democratic candidate's internal polling has it as a two-point race, and the race is close according to even the Eeyore of 2010 electoral pollsters (at least from the Democratic perspective), then it is safe to say this is a race to watch. Such is the circumstance in the Wichita-based 4th district, where Democrat Raj Goyle is either down by two points or ten points, according to new polling. The SurveyUSA poll has Republican Mike Pompeo at 50%, with Goyle back at 40%. But a Gerstein-Agne poll taken on behalf of the Goyle campaign has a much closer race (46-44 Pompeo). Goyle was one of the better DCCC recruits of the cycle, a prodigious fundraiser who has an elevated profile as a result of his tenure as a state legislator.
MI-09: About that new pollster in town....
Props to DK and SSP community member Paleo, who did a little digging and unmasked the identity of the Rossman Group, the Michigan pollster who ran a survey in Michigan's 9th district and claimed that Dem incumbent Gary Peters was down four points. As it happens, the pollster is partnered with The Perricone Group, a PR company which is headed by a former GOP state legislative staffer. So, perhaps a dash of salt should be added to the poll. And, in a quick editorial note, media outlets should really work to disclose those kind of potential partisan relationships.
MN-06: Bachmann-Clark at the periphery of competitiveness
The new SurveyUSA poll out of the suburban/exurban Minnesota 6th has to be a source of at least a little frustration for Democrats. The poll shows a race in which the Democrat is definitely within striking distance, but where there is a enough of a margin that it wouldn't be fair to declare it a toss-up, either. The poll shows Republican Michele Bachmann at 49%, with Democrat Taryl Clark sitting at 40% of the vote. Independent candidates snare 7% of the vote, meaning there are few voters still undecided (a hallmark, to be fair, of SUSA's polling).
NY-20: Public poll gives Democratic incumbent unambiguous lead
Arguably the best poll to close the week for the Democrats comes out of upstate New York, where the new Siena poll in the New York 20th district gives Democratic incumbent Scott Murphy a double-digit edge over Republican challenger Chris Gibson (54-37). Unlike most other House polls this cycle, Murphy has a wide edge with Independent voters. If there is one note of caution, it is that Siena sees a fluid electorate: only about half of the voters are absolutely committed to their vote for November.
PA-10: Scandal threatens to distract, derail GOP challenger
These, one would suppose, are not the kind of headlines that Republican nominee Tom Marino wants to be making this late in the campaign cycle. Marino is facing tough questions about a business reference he offered to a Pennsylvania businessman who was seeking a gaming license. Marino, a US Attorney at the time, claimed that he got written permission to offer the reference to Louis DeNaples, a former felon investigated in the past for ties to organized crime. An anonymous sources within the DOJ has come forward, saying no such permission was given. Marino went on to work for DeNaples after resigning his post as USA.
AZ-Gov: Trainwreck debate appearance now immortalized in campaign ad
Republican Governor Jan Brewer, in the wake of her utterly disastrous appearance in a debate with Democratic challenger Terry Goddard, promptly clammed up. No more debates for her, the Brewer campaign promised. Denied the opportunity for new material, the Goddard campaign has elected to make do with the original, turning Brewer's deer-in-the-headlights performance into a trio of new campaign ads. The jewel of the ads is the tagline--"Is this the best Arizona can do?"
AR-Gov: Democratic incumbent easily leads in re-election bid
Democratic Governor Mike Beebe is well on his way to a second term in office, according to a new survey out at the close of the week from Mason Dixon. The new MD poll puts Beebe at 54% of the vote, well ahead of Republican Jim Keet, who trails with 33%. Beebe was elected for the first time in 2006, easily defeating former Congressman Asa Hutchinson.
GA-Gov: New I-A poll says Barnes has pulled even in Peach State
Perhaps Nathan Deal's personal financial travails are eroding confidence in his ability to govern the state of Georgia. Absent that, it is hard to explain the sudden surge of Democrat Roy Barnes, who has pulled even (42-42) with Deal in the latest poll in the race by Insider Advantage. The pollster also sees Libertarian candidate John Monds at 5% of the vote, implying that a Decemebr runoff may well be possible here.
IL-Gov: GOP pollster says Dem governor down 10 in Land of Lincoln
Local GOP pollsters We Ask America, having just put the Senate race in Illinois as a toss-up, find a slightly more comfortable margin for the GOP in the state's gubernatorial race. The margin sits at ten points between Republican challenger Bill Brady (42%) and Democratic incumbent Pat Quinn (32%). In a sign of how dissatisfied Illinois voters may well be with their options here, ten percent of voters indicate that they will support the Green, Independent, or Libertarian candidates in the field.
The House of Ras isn't out of narrative-setting mode yet. No doubts that the NRSC and the RGA are going to be blasting out the newest Ras numbers out of Massachusetts, Wisconsin and New Hampshire (and those New Hampshire numbers look really, really optimistic). They also poll Vermont's lone House seat, while curiously (albeit consistently) refusing to poll Delaware's lone House seat. Anyone have any speculation on why that might be?!
IN-Sen: Dan Coats (R) 50%, Brad Ellsworth (D) 34%
MA-Gov: Gov. Deval Patrick (D) 45%, Charlie Baker (R) 42%, Tim Cahill (I) 5%
NH-Gov: Gov. John Lynch (D) 48%, John Stephen (R) 46%
VT-AL: Rep. Peter Welch (D) 64%, Paul Beaudry (R) 30%
WI-Sen: Ron Johnson (R) 51%, Sen. Russ Feingold (D) 44%