SSP Daily Digest: 12/7

DE-Sen: Here’s an amusing look back at the Delaware race, where it turns out that Christine O’Donnell raised $7.3 million over the course of the campaign (a somewhat large improvement on her $63K from her previous Senate bid) and then proceeded to lose by 16 points. O’Donnell apparently had the same problem that I suspected that Sharron Angle did (though we don’t have any confirmation on Angle yet)… there weren’t any media outlets with available slots to pour all that late-breaking money into.

MO-Sen: Jim Talent has offered his timeline on publicly deciding whether or not to run for Senate (which has seemed to get less likely over the last few days, if you believe the scuttlebutt). He won’t decide until the New Year, and possibly won’t announce anything until the state GOP’s Lincoln Day festivities in mid-February.

MT-Sen: PPP offered some GOP Senate primary numbers, although I’m not sure how useful they are given that Marc Racicot, the former Governor and RNC chair, eats up a lion’s share despite not having really ever been associated with the race. (Although, who knows… maybe this will suddenly prompt him to get interested.) At any rate, the two guys with name rec, Racicot and Rep. Denny Rehberg, are at 40 and 37, respectively. The two little-known guys who are actually the ones running (so far), Steve Daines and Neil Livingstone, are at 5 and 4.

RI-Sen: Although John Robitaille seems to be getting all the attention in terms of the GOP’s pick to challenge Sheldon Whitehouse, Warwick mayor Scott Avedisian is still stoking the fires of vague interest. Avedisian is a moderate and an ally of newly-elected Gov. Lincoln Chafee.

WA-Sen: The race against Maria Cantwell seems to already be a casualty write-off for the GOP, seeing as how the state’s entire viable GOP bench (aka Rob McKenna) will most likely be running for Governor. The state GOP’s usual M.O. in such situations is to turn to some random rich guy as a place-holder (see Mike McGavick, Cantwell’s 2006 opponent, or oft-threatened but never-happened candidate John Stanton), but it may turn out that Clint Didier, the tea partier whose GOP primary bid against Dino Rossi didn’t go anywhere and who’s now interested in trying again, gets left holding the bag this time. Didier, who refused to endorse Rossi and castigated him at every turn, isn’t likely to be able to count on much NRSC or even state GOP goodwill this time, though.

MN-Gov: Nothing like a little post-electoral cat fud, even if it means exiling pretty much your entire pantheon of elder statesmen. The state GOP just excommunicated more than a dozen key moderate Republicans who had jumped ship to support Independence Party candidate Tom Horner in view of Tom Emmer’s extremism. These aren’t just run-of-the-mill PCO-types, either: the list includes an ex-Senator (David Durenberger) and two ex-Govs (Arne Carlson and Al Quie). And if you’re wondering how Emmer is faring in the court of public opinion amidst the recount non-drama, PPP’s out with a snap poll: by a 68-22 margin, voters think it’s time for Emmer to give up (which matches the 68-21 margin of people who think that Mark Dayton was the election’s rightful winner).

OH-17: Wondering who the third-party candidate who fared the best was, in this year’s House races? It was none other than ex-con ex-Rep. Jim Traficant, who picked up 16.1% of the vote against Tim Ryan, the best showing of any indie with both Dem and GOP opponents (and he did it without spending a penny). He fared better than Randy Wilkinson in FL-12, who ran a more credible campaign and was widely viewed as a potential spoiler. In fact, Wilkinson finished 3rd at 10.7%; some random conservative, Dan Hill, got 12% in NE-03 by running to Adrian Smith’s right, although that was a race that Dems barely contested. What about MI-01’s Glenn Wilson, who made waves for approximately one day with his pledge to spend $2 million of his own money (although it’s dubious if he spent more than a fraction of that)? He barely registered, at 7%.

WV-01: Here’s an unexpected comeback, and probably one that’s not a good idea. Alan Mollohan, who couldn’t survive a Dem primary and most likely wouldn’t have won the general even if he’d gotten over the first hurdle, is publicly expressing his interest in running in 2012 for his old seat. He’s opened an FEC account for ’12 and has been reaching out behind the scenes.

NY-St. Sen.: This is basically a Hail Mary at this point, but when it’s the chance to tie the state Senate, it’s a chance you take. Craig Johnson officially filed an appeal yesterday of the judge’s ruling certifying Jack Martins as winner in SD-7 (giving the GOP a 32-30 edge there). He’s asking for a hand count, to see if any votes were missed in the state’s switch this year to electronic voting machines. Given the recent abject fail in finding all the votes cast in Queens, it’s not out of the realm of possibility.

Redistricting: The Fix has another installment in its ongoing redistricting previews, this time focusing on Georgia. The GOP-controlled state legislature should have little trouble adding a GOP-friendly 14th seat in Atlanta’s northern tier of exurbs, where most of the state’s growth has occurred. The real question will be whether they can do anything to turf out either of the two remaining Dems in slightly lean-Dem districts in south Georgia, Sanford Bishop or John Barrow? Although neither of their seats are truly minority-majority, the VRA might be implicated if their seats get messed with too much. Bishop’s GA-02 is likely to be shored up in order to make freshman Austin Scott safer in the 8th. Barrow seems like an easier target, but to do so would not only risk VRA litigation but also make Jack Kingston’s 1st less safe, meaning incumbent protection might be the result.

Demographics: There was a massive dump of U.S. Census data yesterday, although none of it is the actual hard count from 2010 (which is due by the end of the month, including state populations for reapportionment purposes). Instead, this is the Demographic Analysis (used to estimate undercounts in the actual count, although there won’t be any adjustments made to the counts for redistricting purposes in this cycle). The big number was the total population estimate, ranging from 306 million to 313 million, with a midrange estimate of 308.5 million (which would put the average House district, for redistricting, at 709K). Also worth noting: Hispanics accounted for essentially the nation’s growth in youth population in the last decade, and Hispanics have grown from 17% of the nation’s under-20 population in 2000 to 22% now; without Hispanics, the number of young people would have actually gone down since 2000.

183 thoughts on “SSP Daily Digest: 12/7”

  1. And since, Emmer has now withdrawn 650 more challenges and the canvassing board will only be looking at 131, some of which include frivolous challenges.  

    In the paper today, there were two reader’s write (which are a few hundred words opinions they post from readers) with one being from someone who volunteered challenging ballots for Emmer and another who volunteered in some capacity but not for Emmer.   The guy for Emmer quit during day three because he got sick of being chastised and pressured for not challenging enough ballots.  The other guy who worked in some unspecified capacity said how he saw Emmer volunteers getting talked to by the higher up campaign staff about needing to challenge more all the time.

  2. This is a question for the redistricting gurus here. I really dont see the GOP having a problem drawing either Barrow or Bishop out.

    Can’t they just lump all the Demcrats in South into one sprawling black majority VRA district?

    To me this would solve all the GOPs problems. The district could run across GA from Savannah to Alabama taking in every African American community along the way in some sort of D+10 district.

    This way the GOP shores up Scott and picks up another South Ga seat and avoids any VRA problems by creating another black majorty district. To me this is a no brainer win situation for them. Am I missing something on this? Has anyone drawn a district like I am taling about on the redistricting ap?

  3. Things can certainly change in a matter of two years, but she’s blowing every other person out of the water. Her closet opponent is Pawlenty, who would lose by ten points. She is beating Norm Coleman by 14 points and Bachmann by 17 points. I am not sure if I expect her to win by as large of a margin as she did last time, but really, who cares if she wins by 15 instead of 20?

    It’s nice to see the Democrats won’t have to sweat this seat that much, if at all, just like they won’t have to worry about Cantwell’s seat. I have no doubt the Republicans will try to take these seats, but I give them worse odds in these states than I give the Democrats in Texas. Hopefully, this makes defending the seats in Virginia, Montana, and Missouri just a little easier.  

  4. … anticipating an Obama loss.

    He’s very close to Mitt Romney and although the odds of a Romney win in ’08 (in the GE) were fairly low, I remember reading he was a likely cabinet pick should Romney win.

    He narrowly missed out as Labor Secretary in Bush’s first term.  

  5. Actually I think Mollohan is the ideal candidate to try and win that seat back (if the seat keeps its current form). Fact is, he didn’t take the primary threat seriously enough last year – he only got into campaign mode very, very late. As it turned out, too late. Both his name recognition and fund-raising are likely to be much better than any other possible Democratic candidate.

  6. At what has to be the peak of tea party influence, a PPP poll taken December 3-6 in Michigan pairing up Obama with Romney, Gingrich, Palin and Huckabee shows only one of these races being competitive at the moment:

    Obama: 47%

    Romney: 43%

    Obama: 51%

    Huckabee: 39%

    Obama: 52%

    Gingrich: 37%

    Obama: 56%

    Palin: 35%

  7. in the Google adspace area.  Is he trying to come out of the shadows to run for Senate?  His website is small and only contains fluff stuff on his record.

  8. Link: http://www.publicpolicypolling

    Candice Miller looks like the toughest opponent for Stabenow, trailing her by 2 but with +15 favorables. Pete Hoekstra, a more likely candidate, trails by only 1 but his favorables are underwater. Terri Lynn Land trails by 4, I don’t know how serious she is about getting in the race.

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