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Wednesday, January 11, 2006

MT-Sen: Tester Tied with Burns, Morrison Close

Posted by DavidNYC

From Rasmussen (likely voters, Sept. in parens):

Tester: 45 (38)
Burns: 45 (51)

Morrison: 43 (39)
Burns: 46 (51)
(MoE: ±4.5%)

That's a lot of movement, and fantastic news for our side. Burns' cash advantage no longer seems to be helping him, and I can only conclude that the harsh negative fallout from his entanglements with Abramoff is hurting him. Just the other day, Burns had to embarassingly insist that he wasn't going to drop out of the race. He sounded a lot like Janeane Pirro to me - in other words, I wasn't buying his shtick that he was stickin'.

Burns clearly should bail - just think of how much more money he could make (and how many fewer constituents he'd have to worry about) if he took a sweet lobbying job. Doesn't he want to be comfortable in his retirement, and take care of his kids and grandkids? The issue, though, is of course whether he will retire. And here's the thing: If the GOP can't pull a Torricelli on Santorum - hell, if they can't even pull a Gillooly on Katherine Harris - then I don't see how Burns can be pushed aside. The Republican Party is leaderless at the top - Frist is crippled, Liddy Dole is incompetent. I think GOP Senate candidates are just gonna do their own thing from now until November.

Anyhow, as I say, this poll is tremendous for our side, and especially for Tester - Morrison supporters have often said he won't have enough money to compete, but that's clearly not hurting him. I'd love to see an independent poll of the primary matchup, but for now, why not send some coin Tester's way? In the eyes of the traditional media, this poll officially marks this race as a top-tier pickup opportunity, and Tester deserves our help.

Posted at 01:02 PM in 2006 Elections - Senate, Montana | Technorati

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This is great news! I have been following the Montana developments through leftinthewest.com and I am very excited for the prospects of this pickup. I'm rooting for Tester.

Posted by: KansasNate [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 11, 2006 01:40 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

I'm worried about Burns getting out of the race too. Denny Rehberg or Marc Racicot would be likely to take the baton from him, and they'd be much more difficult to pick off.

Posted by: Mark [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 11, 2006 01:50 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

I'd love to send something his way but thanks to Sherrod Brown, I can't. It all has to go to Paul Hackett between now and May. In the last two days, it has suddenly become way beyond imperative to prevent Sherrod Brown from becoming the Deomcratic Senatorial candidate from Ohio. My belief that he probably can't beat DeWine has evolved into absolutely certainty, and the guy is going to melt down and humiliate the Ohio Democratic Party anyway, as if we needed still more. His inept, baffling and problematic withdrawal from a local bloggers' forum on Monday evening, gracelessly handled and giving the excuse that one of the bloggers swore at his wife, proves he doesn't have what it takes to complete this campaign. Wait until the Republicans rip his wife to shreds during the general, exhuming her divorce and flogging the conflict-of-interest issue to the heavens. If he can't take this now, he can't handle the viciousness and amorality of the GOP. Go, Paul Hackett. Go go go! Sherrod is toast.

Posted by: Ansatasia P [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 11, 2006 02:52 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Wow, this numbers are jaw-dropping. It seemed like there was beginning to be some resignation over this race, because Morrison's numbers looked way stronger based on the Mason-Dixon results, but this catapults him back into the fight in a big way. I sincerely hope he's our nominee, because I don't think that either of our guys could lose against Burns, and if we're going to have a Dem we might as well have a progressive, liberal Democrat who'll fight for the working class and the common man with gusto.

Posted by: HellofaSandwich [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 11, 2006 06:01 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

This definatly could be an outliner but I'll take it. I will be very interested to see what the polls say in a few days and who leads in the nomination. Until then I encourage you to donate to the Act Blue Montana General Election Fund, so that whoever wins the nomination will have enough money to defeat Burns.


Posted by: jkfp2004 [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 11, 2006 09:01 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

jkfp2004, I like your style.

I like seeing Burns slip in the polls, but I am not giving this poll any credit. Rasmussen is notorious for being inaccurate and the last time Rasmussen ran poll the entire blog world was talking about their conservative bias. First, I would never trust a poll that makes reference to BOB SCHWEITZER, its Brian Schweitzer. If you can't get the names correct, you can't do a proper poll.

Second, congrats to Tester on the big jump in the polls, but I have to wonder how legitimate it is. The last poll came out a couple weeks ago. Tester has made a giant leap in the polls, but he hasn't carried a headline in Montana since the last poll came out. Usually if someone makes this big of move in the polls there is something to contribute it to.

Despite the poll, I still consider Morrison to be the front runner and montana's best hope to unseat Burns or whatever other challenger may arise. The republicans know it to, last weekthe independent paper in Helena ran a story about a GOP poll that was polling one question, Morrison or Burns, no other democrat was mentioned in the poll.

Posted by: Andy_Duphrane [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 12, 2006 12:07 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Actually, I think claims of Scott Rasmussen's bias have died down considerably, and his firm seems to be putting out pretty reliable stuff these days.

Also, one cannot really compare different polls with different methodologies, questions, etc. Tester and Morrison had pretty identical showings in September, and very similar showings again this month. How do you account for Morrison's jump? I'd account for both largely due to Burns' spectacular implosion.

Posted by: DavidNYC [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 12, 2006 01:53 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment


I agree that both are rising in the polls due to Burns' spectacular implosion. The jump in the polls for the democratic candidates is not proportional. The last poll Morrison is was at 40% and Tester was at 35%. If we both assume that their rise in the polls is due Conrads actions, then it would be logical the both candidates would a proportional jump in the polls. Instead Tester jumped 10% and Morrison jumped 3%. I am saying I have not seen anything in the Montana newspapers in the last couple weeks, since the last poll, that would explain why Tester would an disprortionate jump in the polls. It seems to defy logic. Which makes me hesitant to validate this poll.

it is true it is never a completely fair comparison when examine two different polls; another reason I waiting for the next poll to validate this one. Maybe I would give this poll more weight, but they don't even have the names correct. BOB SCHWEITZER?! All in all, somethings not right.

Posted by: Andy_Duphrane [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 12, 2006 01:23 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Getting some guy's first name wrong on a press release doesn't exactly torpedo all of Rasmussen's credibility in my book. I've occasionally gotten names wrong myself - even names that I knew. Does that ruin me? Hardly.

And again, I refuse to accept a direct comparison between the MD poll and the new Rasmussen poll. It's not just "unfair," it's methodologically unsound.

Posted by: DavidNYC [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 12, 2006 02:28 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

My intuition: In the past polls, pre-abramoff, it showed Morrison edging Tester due to his statewide recognition and him being able to easily consolidate the Dems / Indies who will more than likely vote for either dem anyways, as he has better recognition.
Versus Tester, who while is less known statewide, currently at this point in time has a better chance of picking up Republican/conservative leaning indies, partly due to him being from his Big Sandy district (which is a heavy Repub district in pres. elections), and partly his general appeal. Thanks to the Abramoff scandal, the "anti-Burns" coalition, usually supporting Morrison in the past, will now coalesce behind any Dem nominee, and says they will support Tester OR Morrison, rather than Morrison/Undecided.

Posted by: KainIIIC [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 12, 2006 06:38 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment