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Monday, September 25, 2006

NY-25: Maffei (D) Makes Stunning Gains in New Poll

Posted by DavidNYC

A new poll (PDF) for Dan Maffei's campaign, from the Benenson Strategy Group (likely voters, March in parens):

Maffei (D): 40 (23)
Walsh (R-inc.): 44 (52)
Undecided: 14 (24)
(MoE: ±4.9%)

Maffei went from minus 29 to minus 4 - a monster 25-point swing. And Walsh is now well under 50%. This race has received a lot less attention than many others in NY, though I think that's at least in part because New York is so target-rich this year. In any event, this poll - combined with Maffei's addition to the Red-to-Blue list - will no doubt cause more people (myself included) to take greater notice.

With a swing this big, you have to wonder if it's legit. So I'll be curious to see if Walsh responds with a poll of his own. If he doesn't (and he probably won't), then we'll know that Maffei has done something really impressive in this district.

(Hat tip to Pogues Fan.)

Posted at 08:43 PM in 2006 Elections - House, New York | Technorati

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Am I correct that this is the bluest district in New York not represented by a Democrat?

I've heard a little about this race, but it definitely hasn't received the level of buzz that NY-20 has, even though I've always looked at that race as an extreme longshot. How long has Walsh been in the House and why hasn't he had a target on his back thus far?

Posted by: Mark [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 25, 2006 09:38 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

I would expect to see these types of results in election years where national issues dominate like Iraq. This is not an anti-incumbent year, it is an anti-GOP incumbent year. It is impossible to say where else this will occur [KS-2 BOYDA v. RYUN has similar findings], but I expect you to report similar trends in as many as a dozen other races the next couple weeks. Some in the media are claiming a GOP rebound is brewing. Don't believe it. After the CIA report cut the legs right out from under BUSH/CHENEY's war rationale, they have no where to hide any longer regarding Iraq.
The death toll in Iraq has now surpassed the death toll from 9-11. Sobering thought after reading the CIA report.

And what is up with pseudo Democrat Heath SCHULER in North Carolina? Hedging on if he would vote for Nancy PELOSI for Speaker of the House? Unbelievable.

Posted by: walja [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 25, 2006 10:27 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

You haven't heard much about Walsh because his been in congress since 1988.

Yes his district is the most blue of any republican seat in NY (D +3.4), but he has crushed every opponent facing him since 1996 where he pulled out a victory 55%-45%.

Its a tight race.

I hope for the best of all the NY races (mine is the NY-19).


Posted by: MrMacMan [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 25, 2006 10:33 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

NY-20 is certainly winnable. The district only went for Bush by six points in 2004. This year, both Spitzer and Clinton will probably easily carry the district and their coattails should certainly help Gillibrand. This is my district, and I have been seeing far more Gillibrand signs than I have for Sweeney in the biggest part of the district, which is the city of Saratoga Springs which has about 30,000 people. I am holding out hope for this district.

Posted by: Sean [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 25, 2006 10:41 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Whaddya know - I didn't realize that about Walsh's district, for whatever reason. Indeed, it's even a hair bluer than Dem Tim Bishop's district (the least blue Dem-held district in the state).

Posted by: DavidNYC [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 25, 2006 10:41 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Hey David -- what do you think about kos story about how he doesn't want to hear people whine about their races that aren't being funded?


Posted by: MrMacMan [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 25, 2006 11:03 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Well, who ever enjoys hearing anyone whine about anything?

In all seriousness, Markos is exactly right on that score. Wasting time complaining that the DCCC or DailyKos isn't supporting your candidate is exactly that - wasted time. Paul Hodes is a great example: Here's a guy who no one thought much of, got pasted in 2004, no real political resume.

Yet he and his team worked their asses off, got noticed by the blogs, raised really good money, produced good poll results and - at the end of the day - wound up on the Red to Blue list. Not once did I EVER hear a Hodes supporter whine about what they WEREN'T getting.

Rather, they all just worked hard on behalf of their man, whether it's been canvassing or writing LTEs or raising awareness in the blogs or - heh - busting sock-puppets. Hodes supporters have been a model for others.

And, to add my own take: I find it pretty frustrating, if not almost insulting, when people bitch about the DCCC not supporting a first-time candidate with zero experience and no fundraising track record in a district that voted for Bush by 20 points in 2004. Just because "people in the district are tired of" the incumbent Republican and he's a rubber stamp and your guy is a good progressive (this is the catechism) does NOT automatically mean that national resources should be put in play there.

Politics is always the art of the possible. The blogosphere and Howard Dean's 50-state strategy have helped expand the playing field (something that is possible), but the playing field cannot be expanded everywhere. That would be impossible.

Posted by: DavidNYC [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 26, 2006 12:26 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Thanks for the viewpoint.

I'm just hoping people (I'm probably overgeneralizing here) like myself don't take the comment personally and get discouraged and give up on their race.

BTW, much congrats about the marriage and honeymoon.


Posted by: MrMacMan [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 26, 2006 12:43 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Well, I think branding people as "whiners" is not necessarily the best way to get people to listen to your viewpoint, so I might have chosen different language.

But Markos certainly meant to inspire people, not to discourage them. All he's saying boils down to, "Go work for your candidate!" Every moment spend complaining could instead be spent: writing an LTE; registering a voter; e-mailing a friend; convincing a family member to make a small donation; canvassing a neighborhood; or writing a diary in support of your candidate.

Or a zillion other things. I've gotten a lot of e-mails (far more than I care to have received) from people bellyaching about why their candidate wasn't selected for the netroots page. Hell, even today, I had a campaign manager sniff at me that "the revolution will start without you!" (To be fair, I've also gotten plenty of polite e-mails suggesting candidates for inclusion.)

I can promise you this: All of those whiny e-mails were wasted time. They certainly weren't gonna make me MORE likely to include a candidate on the page. And on the occasions when there was clearly a coordinated whine-fest, it made me LESS likely to do so.

But if instead all of those people had spent that time working for their candidates, who knows where that might have gone. It certainly would have accomplished more than complaining did.

Posted by: DavidNYC [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 26, 2006 01:14 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Syracuse University and Lemoyne are right in the heart of this district. This is actually the first district I ever voted in, as a college freshman. I would love to see a huge college mobilization effort for Maffei. I remember feeling like the college students at SU were the only people voting against Walsh. Maybe they will be able to push Maffei over the top.

Posted by: BCarr [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 26, 2006 11:11 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment