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Wednesday, June 01, 2005

MT-Sen: Conrad Burns and Mason-Dixon

Posted by Bob Brigham

From Kos:

And take a gander at these historical M-D numbers:
May 2000
Burns (R) 54
Schweitzer (D) 30
September 2000
Burns (R) 48
Schweitzer (D) 39
October 23-24, 2000
Burns (R) 45
Schweitzer (D) 44
Final Results, November 2000
Burns (R) 51
Schweitzer (D) 47
Burns starts weaker today, over a year out, than he looked four months before the 2000 election against a then-unknown Schweitzer.

That really puts in perspective the new Mason-Dixon poll. Via Kos:

Mason-Dixon. 5/23-25. MoE 4%. (No trend lines.)
Burns (R) 49
Morrison (D) 34

Burns (R) 50
Tester (D) 26

While I generally don't get involved in primaries, I will be strongly backing John Tester, the MT Senate Majority Leader, in this race. I have no doubt he will win both his primary and the general election come November 2006.

Burns dropped a solid five points during the spring 2005 Republican legislative disaster.

Same poll, trend lines from Mason-Dixon 12/29/2004, 625 self-described voters:

Senator Conrad Burns Job Approval

Approve 59 (64)
Disapprove 39 (33)

I've never had much respect for Mason-Dixon in Montana, so I usually calculate that Dems are actually in better shape than their sample suggests. Regardless, Burns is trouble, especially contrasted with Jon Tester. As the (subscription only) Hotline headlined: MONTANA: Poll Finds What Instinct Already Was Saying, Burns Is Probably Going To Be Vulnerable

Kos also brings up an important point:

Tester's name ID is a mere 39 percent, compared to 69 percent for Morrison and 99 percent for Burns. In a small state like MT, it doesn't cost much to get your name ID up there.

We starting early and have a great candidate, join Swing State Project by helping with an early contribution.

As TMO said in the comments:

I sent in a small donation, enough that I'm going to stay interested.

Montana is a great pickup possibility for us because of the tiny population, as Kos mentioned. At a little over 900,000, it's smaller than many left-leaning cities and urban counties. For the same power as a California senator, we only have to reach 1/30th the number of voters as in California.

Tester is an ideal western candidate and we have a huge opportunity. TMO won't be the only one to "say interested" in this race. Within months, I fully expect to see long drawn out debates over the Iron Triangle strategy, Reservation registration, and the sign war highway-by-highway.

Contribution amount: $

Posted at 10:10 AM in 2006 Elections - Senate, Activism, Montana | Technorati