SSP Daily Digest: 8/5 (Morning Edition)

  • TN-Gov: Today, we are all Basil Marceaux Dot Com.
  • AK-AL: After three years of anticipation and $1.2 million in legal defense fees, GOP Rep. Don Young’s office is now claiming that the Department of Justice will not prosecute the crusty incumbent for his involvement in a wide-spanning Alaskan bribery scandal.
  • AR-01: Three aides to scuzzbucket former state Sen. Tim Wooldridge, who narrowly lost the Democratic primary to Chad Causey, have decided to endorse Republican Rick Crawford. Wooldridge is still staying mum on who, or when, he’ll endorse, but this doesn’t seem like a good sign for Democratic unity.
  • AZ-08: National Research for the Conservatives for Congress Committee (7/26-27, likely voters):

    Jesse Kelly (R): 36

    Jonathan Paton (R): 17

    Brian Miller (R): 5

    Undecided: 32

    (MoE: ±5.7%)

    CFC’s dog in the race against Democrat Gabby Giffords is clearly the tea-stained Kelly, as opposed to the NRCC-hyped state Sen. Jonathan Paton. Who knows if this poll is credible, but let’s hope that it is!

  • NY-01: Hah, this is a pretty good catch by the George Demos campaign. They’re hitting Randy Altschuler for sending out campaign emails cribbed from the notepad of NY-23 loser Doug Hoffman. Sure, it’s not at the same level as Scott McInnis, but the more cat fud consumed in this race, the merrier for all.
  • NY-29: A hearing officer of the New York Board of Elections has invalidated enough signatures to knock Some Dude Janice Volk off the GOP primary ballot for the vacant seat left behind by Eric Massa. The NYBoE will issue its ruling on the matter today, but it doesn’t look like the beleaguered Volk campaign has the resources — or spirit — to appeal the decision in court. Volk’s exit will ensure a fight between Republican Tom Reed and Democrat Matthew Zeller this fall.
  • PA-06: Jim Gerlach is attacking his Democratic challenger, physician and Iraq War veteran Manan Trivedi, for not having lived in the 6th District in recent years. But of course, Trivedi was otherwise occupied with a little thing called military service during that time. Douche chill!
  • WY-AL: Mason-Dixon for the Casper Star-Tribune (7/26-28, likely voters):

    David Wendt (D): 29

    Cynthia Lummis (R-inc): 59

    Undecided: 12

    (MoE: ±4%)

  • RNC: The Republican National Committee has taken out a $10 million line of credit in preparation for funneling major resources to the party’s efforts at winning Dem-held House and Senate seats this fall. There’s no word, yet, if Democratic committees plan to follow suit — you may recall that in the last cycle, both the DCCC and the DSCC took out substantial loans to help take advantage of the national climate.
  • WY-AL: Lummis Pulls Ahead

    Research 2000 for Daily Kos (10/27-29, likely voters, 10/14-16):

    Gary Trauner (D): 45 (44)

    Cynthia Lummis (R): 49 (43)

    (MoE: ±4.5%)

    This is a race that looks great on paper: Gary Trauner (who almost beat Barbara Cubin last time, helping prompt her retirement this year) is a known quantity in Wyoming, who’s been running mostly even in the polls with Cynthia Lummis, and now he’s getting a good amount of DCCC IEs to go with his netroots money, enough to recently boost this race to Lean Republican. However, we might be seeing a bit of what we’ve been worried about here at SSP: previously high numbers of undecided Republicans, who seem to be coming home to the GOP in the closing moments of the campaign. If 2006 is any indication, though, Trauner is good at overperforming the polls.

    McCain is up 61-36 in Wyoming. There are two senate races, both safe GOP: Barasso leads Carter 60-35 and Enzi leads Rothfuss 62-35.

    WY-AL: Another One-Point Lead for Trauner

    Mason-Dixon for Casper Star-Tribune (10/13-14, likely voters):

    Gary Trauner (D): 44

    Cynthia Lummis (R): 43

    David Herbert (L): 4

    (n = 625)

    Apparently Mason-Dixon liked what they saw with Research 2000‘s poll last week of the at-large representative’s race in Wyoming, because they reproduced the exact same numbers. The most noteworthy difference here is the inclusion of Libertarian David Herbert, which explains where some of that unaccounted-for 13% from the R2K poll may be going.

    There’s still some bad news for Trauner: of the 9% who remain undecided in this poll, 75% are Republicans. (Only 16% are Democrats and 9% are independents.) On the other hand, there’s some good news, too: Mason-Dixon polled this race for the Star-Tribune at this point two years ago, and Trauner trailed Barbara Cubin by 7%, but went on to lose by less than 1,000 votes.

    (H/T: Andy Dufresne)

    WY-AL: One-Point Lead for Trauner

    Research 2000 for Daily Kos (10/14-16, likely voters, 9/22-24):

    Gary Trauner (D): 44 (42)

    Cynthia Lummis (R): 43 (42)

    (MoE: ±4.5%)

    Gary Trauner keeps making a real race of this in the deep red state of Wyoming. Moving from a tie to a one-point lead shouldn’t be taken as anything but statistical noise, but it’s pretty clear this race survived Palinmania intact and is going to go down to the wire.

    There’s one note of caution when viewing this poll, though: if you look deep in the crosstabs, you’ll see that 22% of Republicans are still undecided (compared with only 2% of Democrats and 9% of Independents). If the majority of those undecided Republicans break at the last minute for Lummis, she wins. (However, in a year as weird as this, with the Republican brand a smoldering radioactive heap of wreckage, I suppose that’s not a done deal.)

    The rest of the poll reflects Wyoming’s Republican lean: McCain leads Obama 58-35, while in the two Senate races (one special, one regular, both with GOP incumbents) Mike Enzi leads Chris Rothfuss 61-34 and John Barasso leads Nick Carter 57-36.

    WY-AL: Trauner, Lummis Tie

    Research 2000 for Daily Kos (9/22-24, likely voters, 5/20-21):

    Gary Trauner (D): 42 (44)

    Cynthia Lummis (R): 42 (41)

    (MoE: ±4.5%)

    Here’s our first look in many months at the race for Wyoming’s at large House seat, being vacated by the always-charming Barbara Cubin. The poll shows a tied game between Gary Trauner, who came very close to shocking Cubin in 2006, and former Secretary of State Cynthia Lummis. (The previous poll was taken long before Wyoming’s GOP primary, where Lummis defeated Mark Gordon, who was considered to be the less-divisive pick.)

    There are two possible schools of thought on the state of this race: first, this isn’t that good, because Trauner has lost ground from last time even though now it’s confirmed he’s running against Lummis (who, personality-wise, seems to take after Cubin).

    On the other hand, it may be good, since this follows in the wake of adding Sarah Palin to the ticket, who plays (or played?) uniquely well in the red states of the West and should have theoretically, via coattails, knocked Trauner out of contention. The same sample shows McCain leading Obama 57-36, still a mighty downdraft for Trauner to fight against, but an indication that Dems are running much better in the Equality State than in 2004 (where Kerry got dismantled 69-29).

    WY-AL: Poll Shows Tight Race

    Research 2000 for DailyKos (5/20-21, likely voters, no trendlines):

    Gary Trauner (D): 44

    Cynthia Lummis (R): 41

    (MoE: ±4%)

    The poll has a sample of 48R-24D-28I. Exit polls from 2004 showed turnouts at 53R-25D-22I. If this shift from R to I is accurate, that’s a heartening sign, seeing as most independents these days lean Dem. Indeed, Trauner carries that group 58-32. He also fares far better among Dems (85-11) than Lummis does among Republicans (62-15).

    These results are very similar to a Casper Star-Tribune poll from January, which had Trauner edging Lummis 41-40. Then as now, Trauner had more solid support from his own party than Lummis. However, the GOP hasn’t decided on a nominee yet, and won’t until late in the summer – August 19th, in fact. Lummis, a former Secretary of State, has to contend with rancher Mark Gordon, who has raised considerably more than she has – though the bulk of his haul actually consists of a $300K donation he made to his own campaign.

    Markos didn’t poll a Trauner-Gordon matchup, but he may want to the next time R2K is in the field: a Gordon internal poll from earlier this month showed him up 39-23 over Lummis. That poll, though, showed 30% undecideds, and I’m going to bet that surveying likely voters for a primary in the dog days of summer is a very inexact science.

    Depending on how divisive this primary gets, GOP support may or may not coalesce around the eventual nominee. Right now, Lummis at least seems pretty untarnished, with a 49-29 favorability rating. Trauner’s numbers are similar, 52-31, and he still has a little room for growth (17% have no opinion of him). He’ll need to hope that Republican support for his opponent, whoever it may be, stays soft, and he’ll also need to eke out some more votes from undecided independents. If Trauner can do that, lightning might just strike.

    P.S. Bonus finding: McCain leads Obama 53-40. Kerry lost this state 69-29.