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Thursday, September 28, 2006

Netroots Candidates Poll Round-up

Posted by James L.

There are a lot of good reasons to be proud of the netroots candidates this year: 10 of 14 House candidates have been targeted for DCCC support, and polling continues to improve virtually across the board, including for our candidates in WA, MN, and NH.

SurveyUSA released a new poll today showing Darcy Burner running neck-and-neck with freshman incumbent Republican Dave Reichert in Washington's 8th (likely voters):

Darcy Burner (D): 48
Dave Reichert (R-Inc): 50
MoE: ±4.3%

Now, I'd normally put trendlines in here, as SUSA has polled this race before in August and showed Dave Reichert with a comfy 13-point lead. The only problem, though, was that SUSA's August poll was of registered voters, not likely voters (I have no idea why they were casting such a wide net the first time around), so a trend in Burner's favor could very well be less pronounced if she has a natural advantage among likely WA-08 voters. Reichert has a very strong profile in this district, so if we're ever going to knock him off, this has to be our year.

Over in the North Star state, MN Publius has a partially leaked MN-01 poll commissioned by the SEIU:

Tim Walz (D): 46
Gil Gutknecht (R-Inc): 40
Undecided: 14

Re-elect Gutknecht: 38

Whoaaa. Maybe this is optimistic, or maybe the MoE is 15%, but you never know. MN-01 is a true swing district at R+0.9, and up until the last national "wave" election in 1994, a Democrat held this seat. The demographics are there for a potential upset, and Walz has been raising more money and bringing more noise to this district than any challenger Gutknecht has faced in recent memory. The DFL is revved up statewide by the Senatorial and Gubernatorial contests, which will be a plus for Walz, too.

And finally, over in David's favorite district, the University of New Hampshire has another poll on the Hodes-Bass battle in NH-02 (likely voters, July in parens):

Hodes (D): 36 (25)
Bass (R-Inc.): 46 (53)
Undecided: 17 (22)
(MoE: ±6.2%)

Now, UNH's polling has been all over the map this year, and it has been noted previously that their methodology is pretty fugly (although their partisan samples are much more reasonable this time), so I have no doubt that the truth is somewhat closer to the DCCC's polls on the race. I say that not only because I trust the Mellman Group more than I trust UNH, but also because the DCCC used this poll in determining whether or not to add Hodes to the Red to Blue program (which they did). Essentially, the D-trip was looking for a good picture on the race, not a stacked deck in Hodes' favor, and what they found was a surprisingly tight contest.

Great movement all around, but let's not rest on our laurels. In case you haven't been following, we need just over 600 more donors to meet our goal of 10,000 by the end of the fundraising cycle this Saturday at midnight. I know we can get there with a bang. If you haven't contributed to one of the netroots candidates this cycle, please consider doing so now--this is our last best chance to give an extra boost to strong Democrats waging uncompromising campaigns nationwide.

Posted at 12:13 AM in 2006 Elections - House, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Washington | Technorati

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I really think you are right about the UNH polling in NH2. One other think to add (to what was a very good analysis) - we know from the disclosure reports that the GOP has been polling NH-2. I have heard nothing, however, about what the poll showed. In this case I think the silence is very telling.

Posted by: fladem [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 28, 2006 10:18 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Even though I can't imagine it's accurate, that MN-01 poll from my home district brings a huge smile to my face. The anecdotal evidence against Gutknecht is certainly piling on. He must certainly believe he's vulnerable seeing as how he's been running radio ads since July. Walz, meanwhile, has monopolized southern Minnesota airwaves with unanswered TV ads for weeks now (at least the last I heard, Gutknecht was still not on TV) so it certainly is reasonable to believe Walz has gotten a serious bounce.

I know there are some big Tim Walz fans who frequent this blog. I wrote a diary on Daily Kos earlier this month outlining a geographic path to victory by Walz. Have a look at it: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2006/9/2/20023/20013 The only amendment I would add to it now is that I may have underestimated the impact of the DM & E railroad issue in Rochester, which is about as popular as diarrhea in the city, and is firmly opposed by Tim Walz, yet quietly supported by Gutknecht the last I heard. Perhaps that will soften Gutknecht's margins by enough in the city to undo him.

Posted by: Mark [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 28, 2006 07:05 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment