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Tuesday, December 27, 2005

AZ-Gov: Napolitano Leading All Comers

Posted by DavidNYC

I personally think that incumbent Dem gov Janet Napolitano is safe next year. Rasmussen, at least in the early going, agrees (likely voters, no trendlines):

Janet Napolitano: 50
Don Goldwater: 30
Other: 3
Not Sure: 17

Janet Napolitano: 56
John Greene: 23
Other: 6
Not Sure: 16

Janet Napolitano: 52
Jan Florez: 25
Other: 7
Not Sure: 16
(MoE: ±4.5%)

Who are the potential challengers? Don Goldwater, nephew of Barry; John Greene, former President of the State Senate; and Jan Florez, fomer state appeals court judge.

Here's the thing. I think any incumbent with numbers like these - especially a Dem in a red state - is in a pretty commanding position. Yes, a lot can happen in a year, but closing (at a minimum) at twenty-point lead is no mean feat - especially when, lately, we've seen more undecideds ultimately going with incumbents than they have in the past.

Therefore, I think it may be a bit soon to say that another Arizona incumbent positioned (at least superficially) in the same way as Napolitano is "struggling." That would be AZ GOP Sen. Jon Kyl, who is also leading by a 50-30 margin in another Rasmussen poll taken at the same time.

Now, the comparison may only be superficial indeed. I think Jim Pederson, with his money and network, is a much stronger candidate against Kyl than any of these no-names are against Napolitano. And she's a lot more popular than Kyl (13th of 50 governors vs. 90th of 100 senators). And, of course, 2006 is shaping up to be a year that favors the Dems.

My gut tells me that the odds of AZ-Sen becoming interesting are a lot higher than AZ-Gov becoming a serious race. But Pederson still has some serious work cut out for him if this race is going to become competitive. Once we have a pollster whose been in the field twice (I bet Rasmussen will be first to the punch), we'll finally get to see some trendlines and be able to gauge momentum.

Posted at 01:56 PM in 2006 Elections - State, Arizona | Technorati

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Boding very poorly for Jim Pederson is the immigration issue. The Rasmussen poll also indicated that by a 45-43 margin, Arizonans view immigration as a more serious issue than Iraq....and 73% of those favor building a wall on the border. In other words, Kyl's harder line on the immigration issue probably could almost single-handedly knock Peterson out of contention if current trends prevail. Hopefully, there will be ample proof a few months before the election whether this race is even gonna be close. There's still potential for it to get that way, but those immigration numbers concern me more than Kyl's 20-point early poll lead.

Posted by: Mark [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 27, 2005 03:11 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Good God, his name is Goldwater. Extremism is no vice, huh? By virtue of his name, he does not play well with independents; that number will g oup as his name rec does.

Posted by: Citizen Sam [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 27, 2005 05:26 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Oh, and I don't think Pederson can win. I don't mean to naysay, but as long as Kyl has McCain on his side, he is invincible in Arizona.

Posted by: Citizen Sam [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 27, 2005 05:28 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

The Wild card here is how much Campaigning Napolitano does for Peterson. And how that effects her poll ratings his ratings and so on.

Posted by: D in FL. [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 27, 2005 07:07 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

One thing to remember about incumbents is that they are harder to win against than someone running for an office he has never held before. Kyl also has a sizable war chest built up and has the backing of the RNC. Pederson is forsaking the clean elections act and will be spending several million of not only his own money, but also up to $10 million the DNC will be putting up in the form of both hard money and soft.

The DNC will also be putting up $10 million to ward off Republican challenges to Napolitano's position. Goldwater may not have the backing of the RNC for the same reason they do not support Tom Tancredo; his stance on illegal immigration. Conversely, this is the same reason they are supporting Kyl, though his stance on the issue is more in line with McCain and Ted Kennedy.

The DNC will also be spending like amounts on Gabriella Giffords to capture the House seat being vacated by Jim Kolbe, but the RNC will be hard pressed to support the front runner in that race... Randy Graf. This is also because of his stance on immigration and the fact that he is no friend of Kolbe's.

I am of the belief that on the national level, neither political party really understands the voters. I am completely against the main-steam political figures who stick their fingers in the air to figure out where they stand on an issue. I would rather support a Tancredo or even an unelectable figure such as Dwight Leister, even if I do not fully agree with them, as they are more honest. They have core beliefs that they are not afraid to stand behind.

I have known Goldwater and Graf for some time. One thing I can honestly say about them is that they hold the same views on most issues as they have right along. They have not changed to become more mainstream.

Posted by: Rick M [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 28, 2005 03:13 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Pederson is toast. I hope Schumer does not waste money in Arizona on this milk toast candidate. Rasmussen is a quality pollster and non partisan and if he says KYL is up by 20%, he is.

Posted by: davis [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 28, 2005 06:02 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

I hate when the DEM Seante committee wastes money on the wrong race. John McCain is GOD in Arizona to Democrats also and he will campaign for KYL to the limit. Janet is popular but not on McCain's level.

Posted by: davis [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 28, 2005 06:04 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Rick it is true that Graf is strong headed, but the immigration in Southern Arizona is a big vote getter. Kolbe resigned due to Graf beating him in the primary. Apparently Giffords is vastly to left wing for a district who voted for Bush. The Arizona DEM's are looking for a better candidate, more moderate.

Posted by: davis [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 28, 2005 06:25 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment