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Tuesday, September 19, 2006

IA-01: Braley (D) is Looking Good

Posted by James L.

From a Des Moines Register poll (likely voters):

Bruce Braley (D): 44
Mike Whalen (R): 37
Undecided: 17
MoE: ±4.7%

This is an open seat race in a district that John Kerry won by a 53-46 margin against Bush in 2004. Incumbent Republican Rep. Jim Nussle, who had a lock on this seat since 1990 (facing only one close call in 1992 against incumbent Democratic Rep. Dave Nagle in a redistricting match-up), is making a run for Governor, and it looks like this seat is trending back to its natural condition of leaning Democratic:

The Iowa Poll also tested the overall strength of the two parties' candidates in the state's four other congressional districts.

While not identifying candidates by name, the poll asked whether likely voters would cast their ballots for the Democrat or Republican nominated for the seat in their district. Forty-three percent said they would vote Democratic if the election were held now, and 36 percent said they would vote Republican.

Having the popular Nussle at the top of the ticket is a plus for Whalen, but I'm finding it doubtful that he'll overcome this district's natural Democratic edge in a year like this.

Posted at 04:52 PM in 2006 Elections - House, Iowa | Technorati

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Is Nussle expected to win the Gov's race? Culver had a slight lead in the last Rasmussen poll (although it was 42-40, so it was within the MOE and there are a lot of undecideds).

Posted by: bosdcla14 [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 19, 2006 07:57 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

It's pretty tight. The Des Moines register has Culver and Nussle tied at 44 in their most recent poll, but a Research2000 poll from around the same timefram shows Culver with a 48-43 lead.

Posted by: James L. [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 19, 2006 08:00 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

As I've said before, Culver is kind of a lightweight. He's popular because of his family name and golden boy looks, but he's hardly a polished candidate on the stump or in debates. Nussle would eat him for breakfast if not for the fact that Nussle has come out so far to the right by throwing his support behind the South Dakota abortion ban and suggesting he'd approve it as law for Iowa that Culver could conceivably win by default if he pushes hard enough on the issue.

As for Nussle, he's never been a wildly popular guy. His margins generally hover in the 55-57% margins against fourth-rate challengers....and he now has nine terms under his belt. I expect many of the Democratic-leaning voters of IA-01 who voted for him against token opposition for that House seat will now be backing Culver in the Governor's race, and even more are likely to be backing Bruce Braley in the House race. I'm not expecting Nussle's presence on the ticket to do much for Whalen.

Posted by: Mark [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 19, 2006 08:27 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

The poll in the post is the same one as the one in your comment that has Nussle and Culver tied.

In the article about the poll they state that Culver is beating Nussle in IA-01, so Whalen won't get any help from Nussle

Culver certainly isn't a polished candidate, but compared to Nussle he is a fount of resonability. Nussle's recent statements about abortion have NOTHING to do with Culver's lead. Nussle is much more conservative than the state as a whole (with the exception of the far west) For years he as said and done one thing in Washington, then said the opposite while in Iowa. He has been the Finance Commitee chair for the whole Bush administration, acting as a patsy for Tom Delay's congressional shenanigans, and overseeing the record deficits and record spending. The fact is that a plurality of people (and I'm confident a majority on election day) think he would be a horrible choice to run Iowa.

Posted by: bawbie [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 19, 2006 08:41 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment