CA-10: Garamendi Leads the Pack

SurveyUSA (8/10-11, likely voters):

John Garamendi (D): 26

David Harmer (R): 18

Mark DeSaulnier (D): 15

Joan Buchanan (D): 12

Anthony Woods (D): 5

Chris Bunch (R): 4

David Peterson (R): 4

Mark Loos (R): 2

Other: 4

Undecided: 11

(MoE: ±4.3%)

This looks to be the first public poll of the special election to fill the seat of former Rep. Ellen Tauscher, though the Garamendi campaign recently released an internal (.pdf) that only sampled Democrats and decline-to-state voters. The results of that poll line up fairly well to SUSA’s findings — but only for the Democratic candidates, of course. Garamendi’s poll, from Tulchin Research, pegged the Lt. Governor at 31, with DeSaulnier and Buchanan duking it out for second place at 21 and 17 points, respectively.

Interestingly, when asked, the Garamendi camp told us that they decided not to poll GOP voters in order to save money, and that they felt that no one candidate on the Democratic side would be a particularly strong draw of Republican votes. The DeSaulnier campaign objected, saying that the partial glimpse Garamendi’s poll offered put the legitimacy of the results into question, but SUSA’s crosstabs suggest that Garamendi, in fact, had the most to gain from including Republicans in his sample (other than the GOP candidates, of course); SUSA finds that 14% of Republican voters choose Garamendi, compared to 3% each for Buchanan and DeSaulnier. At this point, a Garamendi-Harmer run-off seems to be the smart bet.

RaceTracker Wiki: CA-10

25 thoughts on “CA-10: Garamendi Leads the Pack”

  1. Which Democrat winds up in second doesn’t matter. In California special elections, if no candidate wins a majority, the top Dem and the top Rep face off. If this poll is prophetic, and I don’t see why it shouldn’t be, that would mean a run-off between Garamendi and Harmer. Garamendi will win that race. I’m good with that.

  2. assuming Garamendi is halfway to booking his flight to DC, what happens in CA when there’s a Lt. Gov. Vacancy? And does it matter much at all to anything?

  3. According to the Garamendi poll memo, they did 400 interviews of Dems and Independents – I’m sure they would have done 400 interviews regardless of party.  There’s no cost savings – sounds like Garamendi’s pollster didn’t know that the Special Election rules allow voters to vote for any candidate regardless of party.  OOPS!

  4. but I hope that he creates the energy and excitement of his campaign to leverage it into something good

  5. It looks like there’s only one Republican currently running for LG, State Sen. Jeff Denham. Schwarzenegger might appoint him to give him a leg up, although it didn’t work when he did it for Bruce McPherson in 2005 for the Secretary of State office.

  6. subject to a confirmation vote in the state senate? I doubt the Democratic majority would accept the presumptive Republican nominee as the new incumbent…

  7. Jeff Denham is in a very blue district

    Dem 47.33%

    Rep :33.41%


    It should be a nice pick up opportunity  

  8. He did good work as Insurance Commissioner and as Deputy Interior Secretary. He’d be a fine, if overqualified, addition to the US House.

    This is not to say I wouldn’t support any of the other Dems, but Garamendi is my choice for now.

  9. If DiFi’s seat comes open next time, he’ll run for it.  He’d Mr. Ants-in-his-Pants, always trying to get a higher than the people want to give him.

    He’d do fine in Congress though.

  10. I recall the vote breakdowns being posted for the CA state senate, and his was the last blue district being held by the GOP. What other pickup opportunities are there?

  11. I don’t see why they wouldn’t, especially if it gives them a chance to pick up Denham’s seat.

  12. on the Central Coast held by Abel Maldonano. Unfortunately that seat is not up until 2012, though I heard Maldonado’s name floated around for a Lt. Gov. pick should Garamendi win.

  13. in spite of the registration difference (CA-15 being 40.9% D-34.6% R in registration) I think CA-15 would be easier for us to pick up should it open up. Though CA-12 has a greater Dem registration advantage, a lot of Democrats in the Central Valley portion of the district there are conservative. Denham won about 58%-42% in 2006, while in 2004 Maldonado won only 53%-43% (with 4% going to a Green). 2008 is not a good measure because (thanks a lot, Perata!) no Dem ran against Maldonado.

    Not to say that we shouldn’t try in CA-12, but I am somewhat hoping that Arnold will choose Maldonado. Abel is like Arnold politically, like ex-SoS Bruce McPherson was IIRC, so maybe Arnold might choose him.

  14. I do think if he had a real shot at winning the Dem. primary for Gov. he wouldnt even care to run for the U.S. House. I just hope hes willing to admit that being a U.S. Rep is his ‘2nd choice’. No shame in that but he should just admit it.

  15. Out of curiousity are many of them Okie/Arkie white transplants and their descendents? I can definitely see many of them still being Dem despite the CA Dem Party being much to their left.

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