Poll Watch: Americans Continue Anti-Incumbent Mood Against Congress

Posted Posted in Congress, Election 2012, Polling

According to the latest Gallup Poll.
Twenty-eight percent of U.S. registered voters say most members of Congress deserve re-election, tying the low point in the trend set last year, according to a new USA Today/Gallup poll.

In early May, Gallup found 24% of Americans approving of the job Congress is doing overall, which reflected a rally in support after the death of Osama bin Laden. Congress’ approval rating had been below 20% in March and April. Nevertheless, voters’ views of Congress in 2011 — in terms of both approval and support for most members’ re-election — are no better than they were last year, despite the great turnover in the 2010 elections that led to Republicans’ taking control of the House of Representatives.

Since 1992, Gallup has typically found more voters saying most members of Congress do not deserve re-election than saying they do. Generally, when higher percentages of voters express these anti-incumbent sentiments, as in 1992, 1994, 2006, and 2010, there is much change in Congress’ membership at the next election.

Why, am I not surprised?

The American economy continues in the dire straights and people will blame their elected representatives in Congress and the President

What is interesting is voter’s thoughts about their own Members of Congress.

Voters are more charitable toward their own Representative with 57% saying that he or she deserves re-election – only 34% say they do not.

So, what does this all mean?

The anti-incumbent mood that led to sweeping changes in Congress after the 2010 elections persists, and the accompanying change in House leadership has not fundamentally altered the way Americans view Congress. Thus, incumbents remain vulnerable heading into the 2012 election cycle, though perhaps not quite as vulnerable as in 2010, given that voters are now more inclined to say their own member deserves re-election.

All incumbent members of the House will be running in newly drawn districts in 2012, further adding to the uncertainty about their future. But significant turnover in Congress may be the “new normal” pattern, given that it has occurred in each of the last three congressional elections.

I would say if I were a new Republican Congressman, I would run hard in their district and not take anything for granted. Voters remain unhappy and will vote you out, if they perceive you are representing yourself and not your constituents.

Election 2012: North Dakota Democrat Senator Kent Conrad to Retire

Posted Posted in Election 2012, Kent Conrad

Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke, left, testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington Friday, Jan. 7, 2011, before the Senate Budget Committee. Committee Chairman Sen. Kent Conrad, D-N.D., is at right

The chances of Kent Conrad winning re-election in a “RED” leaning state were remote at best.
North Dakota Sen. Kent Conrad (D) won’t seek re-election in 2012, presenting Republicans a top pick up opportunity next year.

Democratic sources with knowledge of Conrad’s decision say the Democrat will announce that he will retire on Tuesday. The Washington Post first reported the news of Conrad’s decision.

Conrad was considered very vulnerable in 2012, but he represented the Democrats best shot at holding on to the seat. Without him in the race, Republicans — who made significant gains in North Dakota last year — start the 2012 cycle with significant advantage.

In 2010, Republican picked up both North Dakota’s other Senate seat and the state’s lone House seat. Already, Public Service Commissioner Brian Kalk has announced he will run for the seat. Other potential Republican contenders include Lt. Gov. Jack Dalrymple, who is also considering a run for governor, and Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem.

Another likely opportunity for the GOP to pick up a seat and achieve a Senatorial majority.

GOP NRSC Targets Montana, Virginia, Nebraska, Florida and North Dakota in 2012 Senate Races

Posted Posted in Election 2012, George Allen, Jim Webb, Jon Tester, Kent Conrad, National Republican Senatorial Committee

Montana Democrat U.S. Senator Jon Tester – a GOP target in 2012

The National Republican Senatorial Committee has released its target list for 2012.
The National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) has its eyes on five key races that could pave the way for the GOP to take the majority in the upper chamber in 2012.

NRSC Executive Director Ron Jesmer said in an interview with CNN published Wednesday that the committee believes there is “fertile ground” for Republicans gains in Montana, Virginia, Nebraksa, Florida and North Dakota.

Jesmer said that centrist Nebraska Sen. Ben Nelson (D) is in “serious trouble and kind of in a league of his own,” and that Senate Budget Committee Chairman Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) also “is in a lot of trouble.”

“There are other states where depending on if one candidate runs, there could be some other good challenges,” he added.

The official’s comments provide an early preview to the GOP’s strategy heading into the 2012 Senate campaign, when the party is expected to make gains on the Democrats and take the majority.

Montana, Nebraska and North Dakota were won by 2008 GOP presidential nominee John McCain. Florida and Virginia flipped from red to blue two years ago, but some see the states tilting back to the GOP after the party picked up a number of House seats in each state. 

Barring any GOP blow up in the next year, I see a relatively easy time for the GOP to take control of the Senate in 2012 – or at least come within a few seats, but have an in effect operating majority.

Ben Nelson in Nebraska is toast as are North Dakota’s Kent Conrad and Montana’s Jon Tester.

Former Virginia Senator George Allen has a good chance to best the irascible and weird Jim Webb (if he runs).

It will be good Dem Senate hunting for the GOP in 2012.

President 2012: The First Map of Battleground States Updated

Posted 8 CommentsPosted in Census, Election 2012
election2010map Presidential Election 2012: The First 2012 Map of Battleground States
Back in November, I posted a first map of 2012 Presidential battleground states. Of course, this was before the census and a concomitant reapportionment.

Republican-leaning states will gain at least a half dozen House seats thanks to the 2010 census, which found the nations population growing more slowly than in past decades but still shifting to the South and West.

The Census Bureau announced Tuesday that the nation’s population on April 1 was 308,745,538, up from 281.4 million a decade ago. The growth rate for the past decade was 9.7 percent, the lowest since the Great Depression. The nation’s population grew by 13.2 percent from 1990 to 2000.

Michigan was the only state to lose population during the past decade. Nevada, with a 35 percent increase, was the fastest-growing state.

The new numbers are a boon for Republicans, with Texas leading the way among GOP-leaning states that will gain House seats, mostly at the Rust Belts expense. Following each once-a-decade census, the nation must reapportion the House’s 435 districts to make them roughly equal in population, with each state getting at least one seat.

That triggers an often contentious and partisan process in many states, which will draw new congressional district lines that can help or hurt either party.

In all, the census figures show a shift affecting 18 states taking effect when the 113th Congress takes office in 2013.

Texas will gain four new House seats, and Florida will gain two. Gaining one each are Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, South Carolina, Utah and Washington.

Now, we have some additional polling/party identification information which should also give us a clue as to the identity of 2012 Presidential KEY battleground states:

Watching the party identification polling will give us the trend toward or away from the incumbent Democratic President. Remembering Obama/Biden won 365 electoral votes Vs. McCain/Palin 173.

Looking at the states that lost Electoral Votes:

7hcefomukkzriiembmfzw95 2012 GOP Bonanza: All 10 States Losing Congressional Seats Tilt Democratic

And, the states that gained Electoral Votes:

ml1evzsnyusz6txglpmfia9 2012 GOP Bonanza: All 10 States Losing Congressional Seats Tilt Democratic

Before, I identified the key battleground states (pre-census release):

  • Ohio – 20 (electoral votes): -2 after reapportionment
  • Virginia – 13
  • Colorado – 9
  • Florida -27: +2 after reapportionment
  • Nevada – 5: +1 after reapportionment
  • Wisconsin -10
  • New Hampshire – 4
  • Indiana – 11
  • North Carolina – 15

And, I think, at least for now, pending any dramatic change in party identification I will stay with these states.

The question for the GOP will be: Who will be the best candidate in these nine states to match up against President Barack Obama?

2012 Poll Watch: Massachusetts Not Likely to be Competitive

Posted Posted in Election 2012

"Mitt Romney is no longer a popular figure in Massachusetts and Barack Obama wouldn’t have too much trouble winning the state for reelection even if he had to face a home town nominee.

51% of Massachusetts voters have an unfavorable opinion of Romney to only 40% who view him favorably. Republicans like him for the most part (a 75/14 favorability) and independents narrowly do so as well (50/44). But for a Republican to be popular in a deep blue state requires a lot of appeal to Democrats and that Romney has little of, with only 16% seeing him positively to 76% with an unfavorable opinion. Romney is no Scott Brown as far as appeal across party lines goes.

" He’d certainly be better off than the rest of the possible Republican contenders though. Massachusetts voters have an extremely dim view of the other leading candidates. Mike Huckabee’s favorability is a -19 spread (29/48), Newt Gingrich’s is -31 (27/58), and Sarah Palin’s is -41 (27/68). Given those numbers it’s no surprise Obama trounces the rest of the field in hypothetical contests. He leads Gingrich and Huckabee by identical 57-33 margins. That 24 spread is similar to what he won in the state in 2012. Against Palin that advantage extends to 29 points at 61-32, an even more lopsided showing than Obama received against John McCain.

No real surprise here. The Democrats have become a regional party with Massachusetts being one of the big three with California and New York leading the pack.

tags: Barack_Obama Mitt_Romney

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Presidential Election 2012: The First 2012 Map of Battleground States

Posted 1 CommentPosted in Election 2012

Election 2010 Map as of today from electoral-vote.org

The first pundit map is out for the 2102 Presidential race.
As we begin turning our attention to the 2012 presidential contest, we debut our initial presidential battleground map. Note: This is based on where we believe things will be a year from now, with the GOP candidates headed into home stretch in IA. It essentially combines what we know from ’04, ’06, ’08 and ’10, and factors it ALL in. Here’s another way to look at this: The lean Dem states are winnable by a Republican if things break, say, 53%-47% nationally for the nominee. And the lean GOP states are winnable by a Democrat if things break, well, 53%-47% nationally for the president. And you can guarantee BOTH parties will play in every lean and toss-up state so the BIG battleground for 2012 begins with 17 states. We fully expect a David Plouffe to attempt to argue GA and AZ should be in lean. And we expect a GOP strategist to argue they can put one EV in ME and, say, OR in play. But here you go…

Solid Dem: DE, HI, MD, MA, NY, RI, VT
Likely Dem: CA, CT, IL, ME, WA, OR
Lean Dem: IA, MI, MN, NJ, PA
Toss-up: CO, FL, NV, NH, NM, OH, VA, WI
Lean GOP: MO, MT, NE (one EV), NC,
Likely GOP: AL, AR, AZ, GA, IN, LA, MS, NE (four EVs), ND, SC, SD, TX
DC Solid GOP: AK, ID, KS, KY, OK, TN, UT, WV, WY

Of course, this depends entirely on the economy and it will be interesting to revisit this in about a year. But, as of today, I would say the key battleground states will be:

  • Ohio – 20 (electoral votes)
  • Virginia – 13
  • Colorado – 9
  • Florida -27
  • Nevada – 5
  • Wisconsin -10
  • New Hampshire – 4
  • Indiana – 11
  • North Carolina – 15

Remembering Obama/Biden won 365 electoral votes Vs. McCain/Palin 173. The battleground states above would have 114 electoral votes in play. A sufficient number for a GOP contender to flip and win the Presidency.

The race for 2012 has already started.

Stay tuned……