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Marquette Univ. Law School. 6/13-16. Likely voters. MoE ±4.1% (±5.4% for Republican primary sample). (2/16-19 in parentheses, registered voters):

Tammy Baldwin (D): 41 (42)
Tommy Thompson (R): 49 (48)

Tammy Baldwin (D): 44 (44)
Mark Neumann (R): 44 (40)

Tammy Baldwin (D): 45 (45)
Jeff Fitzgerald (R): 39 (37)

Tammy Baldwin (D): 45 (--)
Eric Hovde (R): 36 (--)

Tommy Thompson (R): 34
Mark Neumann (R): 16
Eric Hovde (R): 14
Jeff Fitzgerald (R): 10
Undecided: 25
After all the sound and fury in Wisconsin over the last few months, and all the pundit pronouncements of how the gubernatorial recall election on June 5 was a game-changing moment that instantly doooooooomed Dems and put the Badger State into play presidentially, you'd think that something might have actually changed. The first post-recall poll from a credible pollster, though (Marquette University Law School, who came the closest of any pollster to pegging the final total in the gubernatorial recall), finds the needle hasn't moved much at all: at the presidential level, it's still leaning in Barack Obama's direction, and at the Senate level, there's still a wide range of possible outcomes, depending on who the GOP manages to nominate.

The Marquette poll finds Obama leading Mitt Romney 49-43, not an overwhelming lead but a solid one. That's down from Marquette's most recent pre-recall poll (where Obama led 52-40), but also an improvement from the Marquette poll before that, in early May, where Obama led only 46-44. (Both of those polls were of likely special election voters; today's poll shifts to likely November voters.) It's also right where you'd expect the presidential race in Wisconsin to be... assuming that the nationwide averages seeing an overall Obama lead of 1-2 points are correct, with Obama performing 3.5 points better in 2008 in Wisconsin than nationwide, he should be running ahead by 5 or 6 points in Wisconsin. In other words, Marquette finds him right where you'd reasonably expect him to be in Wisconsin, with his standing neither improved nor hurt by the last few months' events.

At the Senate level, there was also very little movement in the marquee matchup, which is between Democratic Rep. Tammy Baldwin and Republican ex-Gov. Tommy Thompson for the open seat being vacated by Dem Herb Kohl. A 6-point lead for Thompson in February (Marquette's most recent look at the Senate, before the recall frenzy and using registered voters) is now an 8-point lead, again showing few minds seem to have changed.

The most interesting story in the Senate polling, at this point, may be that there's a huge electability gap between Thompson and the other Republicans, in terms of how they perform against Baldwin. That seems to have mostly to do with name rec: former four-term Gov. Thompson (who has 48/36 favorables, a remarkably low 'unknown' rate of only 16%) is better-known than Baldwin (27/30), who in turn is better known than the minor-league Republicans (ex-Rep. Mark Neumann at 24/24, state House speaker Jeff Fitzgerald at 17/22, and wealthy businessman Eric Hovde at 14/13).

It might seem like a good idea to root for one of the lesser Republicans (like Hovde, who seems to be coming on the strongest of the three, thanks to his ability to run a lot of TV advertising out of his own pocket) to make it out of the primary, but that's not looking likely, as Thompson looks pretty securely in first place in the GOP field. If there were only one Republican running to Thompson's right, the anti-Thompson candidate might have a shot at prevailing, but as it is, the clown-car effect (where the anti-Thompson vote is split three ways) will probably save his bacon. Baldwin may still be able to eke out a narrow victory in November even against Thompson; Thompson is nearly universally known and doesn't have much room for growth, while Baldwin's share will undoubtedly go up as she gets better-known among base Democrats. If this poll is right, though, getting to 50%+1 will require running the table on almost all the undecideds, which is a pretty heavy lift for Baldwin.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I wonder if there might be a Fischer Effect here (4+ / 0-)

    ie so much mud gets slung between the establishment candidate and a conservative challenger that a second conservative challenger is able to sneak in.

    Though I don't know who the Sternberg and the Fischer would be in this analogy.

    You don't fight the fights you can win. You fight the fights that need fighting. -President Andrew Sheppard (D-Wisconsin)

    by Gpack3 on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 01:47:02 PM PDT

  •  So the D/R/I split here is (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    31/30/39? CNN had it at 39/33/29 in 2008.

    I don't know what to think. The analysis from Marquette indicates Independents are leaning towards the Republicans, but then, Obama is still leading. It'll probably be a tighter race than I would like to see, but she is almost certainly very much in this, so I'm still far from gloomy about Baldwin's chances. I just wish I could see more about the internals to have an idea of what Marquette thinks the electorate will look like.

    I hope this states is where PPP polls next.

    Jack Donaghy: "We're nipping this in the bud. Jenna's going to issue a formal apology tomorrow on "Hardball" do know what that is, don't you?" Jenna Maroney: "Yes. Should I prepare a song?"

    by bjssp on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 01:58:15 PM PDT

    •  Combine that with a screen saying "certain" (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      abgin, MichaelNY

      to vote in November, and the poll is junk.

      Any poll that only polls "certain" to vote people is junk.  I don't have a good link, but pollsters who use a 1-10 scale of likely to vote have huge numbers of people in the 50%-99% categories.

      In short, "certain" to vote != "likely" to vote.  They are two different words and two different concepts.  

      There was that article in 2010 (I forget by who) that showed registered voter polls have been more accurate over time than likely voter polls, which I'd think is likely because of some bad methodology polls like this where "near certain" and "fairly likely" and "50/50" and "if the weather is nice" voters are 100% ignored.  For a poll to have any validity, you have to include these "non-certain" people to some degree.

      Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

      by tommypaine on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 02:24:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Correcting myself, poll is not "junk" (4+ / 0-)

        Obama +14 among registered voters, +6 among "certain" voters

        What is wrong is to present the "certain voters" as a "likely voter" sample.  That's incorrect, misleading... wrong.

        And it would be "dumb" or "junk" to call this a "likely voter" sample.

        What it is, is a "certain voter" sample where Obama is +6 with "certain voters".  

        What that means is that the "non-certain" voter subgroup of the registered voters includes some percentage of "likely but not certain" voters, and this group favors Obama in the ballpark of +18 or so.

        Basically what this means is, if this poll is right, Mitt Romney will lose Wisconsin by some percentage higher than 6 points, virtually guaranteed.

        (It's too bad they asked such a useless questio - Are you certain to vote? - since "Are you likely to vote" is the industry norm and offers a much more interesting bit of data.)

        Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

        by tommypaine on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 03:22:12 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Was it (shudder) Ryan who got Russ Feingold's (0+ / 0-)

    Senate seat or Kohl?  I can't remember.  I hope we can get out the vote for Baldwin.  We need a Dem. Senate.

    "Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich."--Napoleon

    by Diana in NoVa on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 02:02:08 PM PDT

  •  What is Baldwin doing right now? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ice Blue

    Is she up on the air defining herself or is she keeping the powder dry and building up her COH? Is Thompson spending his money on the primary or getting largely on name recognition?

    This race is a disaster.  This was supposed to be a safe seat for us - and losing it now puts the whole Senate majority back in play.  

    One of Neumann or Fitz need to get out.  But isn`t the rumor that Fitz is only running to help Thompson?

  •  Ugh (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Baldwin needs to be doing better than this.

    Hope PPP visits WI again soon.

    •  Go to PPP now and vote for Wisconsin (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bythesea, atdnext, MichaelNY

      Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

      by tommypaine on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 02:16:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Donate money to her campaign, been getting (4+ / 0-)

      emails from her campaign about the amount of money Rove and the Kochs have been pouring into this campaign.

      •  Does anyone ever wish that these guys would (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Tiger in BlueDenver

        get everything they'd want, electorally and then legislatively? I mean, I don't really, deep down, but every so often, I am overcome by this enormous sense of helpless and then apathy. Aside from some belief in "change is better, specific qualities be damned," I am just not sure what else could motivate someone to vote for Romney, particularly if they are suffering. I'm not usually a believer in the "let them suffer, and then they'll be grateful" approach, but some days...

        Jack Donaghy: "We're nipping this in the bud. Jenna's going to issue a formal apology tomorrow on "Hardball" do know what that is, don't you?" Jenna Maroney: "Yes. Should I prepare a song?"

        by bjssp on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 03:15:37 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  No (0+ / 0-)

          No, I never wish that the Republicans would get everything they want. And unless you don't think that would really hurt you, it's irrational for you to think that. If you think that wouldn't really hurt you, you are being a sadist. And you're also ignoring history. It's a fact that the non-rich do worse under Republican administrations than Democratic administrations, yet that doesn't prevent many non-rich people from voting Republican. Do we really need to rehash this discussion from all the various angles?

          Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

          by MichaelNY on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 11:35:55 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Is this right? (6+ / 0-)
    The Marquette poll finds Obama leading Mitt Romney 49-43, not an overwhelming lead but a solid one. That's down from Marquette's most recent pre-recall poll (where Obama led 52-40), but also an improvement from the Marquette poll before that, in early May, where Obama led only 46-44.

    Obama's 52-40 lead was in registered voters, not likely. The lead in likely voters was 8. So it's 6, down from 8.

    Interestingly, in this poll, Obama's lead among RV is up to 14.

    •  youre correct (4+ / 0-)

      The 52-40 lead was registered voters. This poll if just registered voters the lead is 14.

    •  The 14 lead seems right on with registered (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      atdnext, antirove

      You just then have to figure a correct turnout of the registerd voters.

      A correct turnout though is definitely not  only people "certain" to vote.  That's an almost comical bit of polling dumbness.

      It is 100% certainty that the turnout in November will include some people who are registered now but are not as of this second "certain" to vote.

      If this were a sliding scale 1-10 likely voter poll instead of a "certain" voters poll, it would likely be Obama +10, which would put it right in the ballpark of both PPP last poll of the race in February, and the recall exit poll.

      If Obama has a +6 lead among "certain" voters, Wisconsin remains Likely Dem with a probably +10 or more margin in the fall.

      Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

      by tommypaine on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 02:30:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Right on, Tommy. (3+ / 0-)

        And I'm so glad I'm not the only one here who can explain this. Btw, this is why almost all the public pollsters screwed up here in Nevada both in 2008 and 2010. They threw the very voters out of their "likely voter screens" (Latinos, youth, late night casino workers, etc.) that ended up giving Obama and Reid their respective big wins.

        This is why I don't put too much stock into most pollsters' "likely voter models".

        •  To beat the dead horse some more (0+ / 0-)

          I posted in both threads today that this is not even a "likely" screen.  It is a "certain" screen.  It is wrong to think of it as "likely".

          It is incompetent polling for them to call certain voters likely voters.  There is a world of difference between those two.

          Certain voters = Obama +6
          Registered voters = Obama +14
          Likely voters = somewhere in between

          Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

          by tommypaine on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 06:24:55 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    Recommended by:
    LordMike, The Caped Composer, abgin

    Rove and the Kochs are pouring a lot of money into this race.

  •  Hovde (7+ / 0-)

    Up here in the Wausau media market, the only Senate ads we are seeing on TV are the Hovde ads.  Quite honestly, they remind me a bit of Feingold's original ads from his first run in terms of "folksy"-ness--not same content of course, but looking them from an independent viewpoint, I can see that one could find him an appealing candidate.  Nothing from Fitzgerald, Neumann, or King Tommy up here.

    Since we have no Democratic primary where I live--all Democrats running are unopposed as far as I know--I might again vote in the August Republican primary just like I did in April in an attempt to "pick" a better opponent for Tammy.  In November, I really think that King Tommy and Hovde are probably the strongest contenders against Tammy Baldwin, so I'd pick either Fitz or Neumann.

    Citizen from WI-07 (Marathon County)

    by CentralWIGuy on Wed Jun 20, 2012 at 03:13:32 PM PDT

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