12:17 PM PT: VA-02: Some very tough numbers for Democrats in VA-02: Freshman GOP Rep. Scott Rigell is out with a new internal from Public Opinion Strategies showing him with a commanding 54-32 lead over Democrat Paul Hirschbiel. I'm surprised Hirschbiel's name recognition is so low (he's been on the air), but I'm not surprised to see Rigell over 50. However, no presidential toplines were provided. Note that the DCCC recently cut back its ad buys here, but House Majority PAC stepped in with a $126K expenditure. It'll be worth seeing whether they continue to spend here.
1:00 PM PT: NJ-03: If Stockton College's new poll numbers are accurate, this might help explain why the NRCC just cancelled a huge ad buy on behalf of GOP Rep. Jon Runyan. The freshman Republican leads his challenger, Democrat Shelley Adler, by a 49-39 margin, suggesting he's very close to sealing the deal. If anything, this sample is very optimistic for Democrats, since Obama's leading Romney 49-41—in 2008, he won just 51-48, so that's a much bluer spread.
1:13 PM PT: NY-21: Cue the theme from "Deliverance," because we've got dueling internals—and only one can be right. Dem Rep. Bill Owens is touting a poll from Global Strategy Group that shows him up 50-36 over Republican Matt Doheny, though the presidential numbers seem very optimistic, with Obama leading 51-39. The POTUS won here 52-47 in 2008, so his share isn't implausible, but Romney all the way down at 39... man, I dunno about that. But Doheny's own survey isn't entirely awesome for him, either. He trails Owens 45-40 but doesn't provide presidential toplines, making the two polls harder to compare. Still, I think I'd rather be Owens right now.
1:41 PM PT: MO-Gov: Some good news on the polling front for Dem Gov. Jay Nixon, who has now legged out to a 54-35 lead over Dave Spence in PPP's latest poll (the same one which put Claire McCaskill up six). The governor's race has been remarkably under-polled, but this is the largest advantage Nixon's ever had since PPP's first survey all the way back in January. It's also only the second poll showing him over 50 (SurveyUSA had him at 51 in August). It doesn't seem like the RGA is going to come in and help Spence, though I'd likely want to see some confirmatory polling before we consider changing our "Lean D" rating on this race.
More interesting are the numbers in the LG and AG races. Republican Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder, who suffered a year of bad press before deciding to seek re-election rather than run for governor, is edging former state Auditor Susan Montee by just a 42-38 margin. That's not exactly where you want to be if you're an incumbent. The attorney general's race isn't actually looking all that competitive, but that's still noteworthy because the sitting AG, Chris Koster, is a Democrat, and he's manhandling Ed Martin 52-34, rather similar to Nixon's numbers. And more globally, you've gotta wonder if Todd Akin's disastrous Senate campaign is acting as a drag on his party elsewhere on the ballot.
U.S. Senate candidate Tommy Thompson says he held six campaign stops on Monday.For a guy who spent the post-primary period resting up, and who's behind in all public polling, this "lay low" strategy is just bizarre.
Just don't expect to get answers about them too quickly.
Under criticism that he hasn't been on the campaign trail enough, Thompson told WBAY-TV in Green Bay on Sunday that he had six events slated for the next day. For three days since then, campaign spokeswoman Lisa Boothe would not provide any details about them despite repeated requests.
On Thursday, she listed eight events that Thompson participated in on Monday, though some of them would not traditionally be considered "campaign stops." Thompson attended a Republican Party event in Waukesha, held a visit to Herzing University that was closed to the general public, sat down for four one-on-one interviews with reporters and held two fundraisers.
1:54 PM PT: CT-05: Politico's Jake Sherman says the conservative American Action Network has a new poll from American Viewpoint showing Republican Andrew Roraback leading Democrat Elizabeth Esty 42-35—but he provides no field dates or sample size, leaving us to wonder when it was taken and what the margin of error might be. And here's something odd: The toplines are identical to a Roraback/NRCC poll taken a month ago.
2:06 PM PT: And Majority PAC is also going into Arizona, with a $130K buy targeting Flake. (Note that they're also spending another $150K in NJ-Sen, again on "voter outreach and printing," doubling their total outlay so far.)
3:30 PM PT: Reshuffling Roundup:
• AZ-02: Even though—or perhaps because—the DCCC announced just a day earlier that they're pulling out of AZ-02, the NRCC has placed a new $225K one-week broadcast buy on behalf of Martha McSally, starting Friday. McSally also says she has an internal poll from OnMessage showing the race tied at 47 apiece—a stark difference from a recent Ron Barber internal that had him up 54-40. We did note, however, that even though the D-Trip is leaving the playing field, House Majority PAC did move in with a $143K expenditure.
• CA-21: Has something gone wrong for Republicans? After Democrats experienced a serious recruiting fail and wound up with the Some Dude-ish John Hernandez (who somehow had negative cash-on-hand in his last fundraising report), the GOP had to feel pretty chuffed about Assemblyman David Valadao's chances in this swingy district. But somehow Hernandez scraped together some dough for a few (low-budget) TV ads, while Valadao, notes Scott Bland, "has only just gone on the air with a TV ad of his own, and his campaign hasn't posted new news to his website since March."
But why mention all this? Because Bland reports that Eric Cantor's YG Action Fund has just jumped in with a $200K TV reservation for the final two weeks of the campaign. I'd also note that while other prognosticators have written this race off, we've steadfastly kept it at "Likely R" for precisely this sort of reason. The 21st is heavily Latino, and in a low-information election, it's easy to imagine many Hispanic voters pulling the lever for the more familiar surname. (Valadao is of Portuguese descent, like several other members of Congress from California's Central Valley, including Jim Costa and Devin Nunes, as well as ex-Rep. Dennis Cardoza.) So let's see if Republicans somehow screw this one up and let Valadao sleepwalk to defeat.
3:43 PM PT: 3Q Fundraising:
• MT-Sen: Jon Tester (D-inc): $2.3 mil raised, $1.3 mil cash-on-hand
• VA-Sen: Tim Kaine (D): $4.5 mil raised, $1 mil cash-on-hand; George Allen (R): $3.5 mil raised, $2.6 mil cash-on-hand. Note: Kaine's lower CoH is due to his recent purchase of $3 mil of additional TV airtime.
• FL-22: Adam Hasner (R): $475K raised (since July 26)
3:52 PM PT: Ads:
3:52 PM PT: Ads:
3:55 PM PT: Ads:
• AZ-01: Ann Kirkpatrick (D)
• AZ-02: Martha McSally (R)
• CA-26: Tony Strickland (R)
• CA-39: American Sunrise (D)
• FL-10: Daniel Webster (R)
• FL-18: House Majority PAC (D)
• GA-12: Chamber of Commerce (D)
• IL-13: David Gill (D)
• MA-06: John Tierney (D)
• MI-11: Syed Taj (D)
• MI-11: Syed Taj (D)
• NC-07: David Rouzer (R)
• NC-07: David Rouzer (R)
• NH-01: Carol Shea-Porter (D)
• NY-01: Chamber of Commerce (R)
• NY-18: Chamber of Commerce (R)
• NY-21: Chamber of Commerce (R)
• NY-24: Chamber of Commerce (R)
• NY-25: Chamber of Commerce (R)
• NY-27: Chamber of Commerce (R)
• PA-18: Tim Murphy (R)
• UT-04: Chamber of Commerce (D)