Presidential Race Maps Writing on the Wall

MN Gov. 2010: Norm Coleman Favorite For MN GOP Nomination

Posted Nov 20, 2009 at 1:35 AM
Maurice Berger, Political Director, PollTrack

According to a poll by Rasmussen Reports, about half of Minnesota Republicans would back Republican former Sen. Norm Coleman, should he run for governor in 2010. Coleman--defeated for reelection to the US Senate earlier this year in a seven-month recount battle--has not indicated that he intends to run. But if he does, he starts with a huge lead over the rest of the GOP field among likely voters, with a whopping 50% of the vote. Second place, at 11% percent, goes to state Rep. Marty Seifert, who stepped down from his post as House minority leader to run for governor.

Projection: Republican Bob McDonnell Leads In VA Gubernatorial Race

Posted Nov 03, 2009 at 11:02 AM
Maurice Berger, Political Director, PollTrack

As expected, CNN projects that Republican Bob McDonnell is leading the Virginia gubernatorial election over his Democratic opponent Creigh Deeds.

Most Vorters in South Carolinia Want Gov. Sanford To Resign

Posted Jun 26, 2009 at 1:14 AM
Maurice Berger, Political Director, PollTrack

Can Gov. Mark Sanford survive his extramarital affair and mysterious disappearance from the state? Can an ultra-conservative "family values" Republican--who proudly condemns gay marriage, gay adoption and even civil unions for gay couples--live down a growing consensus that he is both hypocritical and unethical (he used state funds to travel to Argentina to carry on his illicit affair)? The answer would appear to be no. Two polls suggests that Sanford is in serious trouble: SurveyUSA reports that 60% of South Carolinans believe the embattled governor should resign; 34% think he should remain in office. InsiderAdvantage finds 50% of the state's voters want him to resign; 42%  said he should remain in office.

Minnesota US Senate: Voters Want Republican Coleman To Concede

Posted Apr 28, 2009 at 1:51 AM
Maurice Berger, Political Director, PollTrack

A new Minneapolis Star Tribune poll has bad news for 2008 Republican US Senate candidate: most voters want him to concede the race to Democratic challenger Al Franken, who now leads by several hundred votes: "Nearly two-thirds of Minnesotans surveyed think Norm Coleman should concede the U.S. Senate race to Al Franken, but just as many believe the voting system that gave the state its longest running election contest needs improvement. A new poll has found that 64% of those responding believe Coleman, the Republican, should accept the recount trial court's April 13 verdict that Democrat Franken won the race by 312 votes. Only 28% consider last week's appeal by Coleman to the Minnesota Supreme Court 'appropriate.' Large majorities of those polled said they would oppose any further appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. Should Coleman win at the state Supreme Court, 57% of respondents said Franken should concede. And 73% believe Coleman should give up if he loses at the state's highest court."

Minnesota US Senate: Court Delays Decision Until At Least June

Posted Apr 27, 2009 at 1:21 AM
Maurice Berger, Political Director, PollTrack

It does not look like the endless US Senate race in Minnesota will end anytime soon, as the state's highest court has now delayed any ruling on the matter until at least June: "The state Supreme Court set the schedule today for the legal showdown between Democrat Al Franken and Republican Norm Coleman over the Senate seat that has been vacant since January. The schedule, set by the five justices who will hear Coleman's appeal, appears to hew more closely to his proposed schedule than the quicker one proposed by Franken. Coleman must file his brief in the case no later than next Thursday; Franken has until May 11 to do so. Coleman then has until May 15 to file his reply brief. The justices will hear the appeal on June 1." 

Minnesota US Senate: Republican Coleman Not Backing Down

Posted Apr 20, 2009 at 1:49 AM
Maurice Berger, Political Director, PollTrack

The Republican candidate Norm Coleman--despite loosing his race for reelection to Democrat Al Franken, according to a three-judge panel--is clearly prepared to keep the seemingly endless race going. According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune: "Norm Coleman is hitting a different kind of campaign trail this week. The former Republican senator is using a media blitz to convince Minnesotans weary of the recount process and frustrated that they are still a senator short that he has good reason to appeal Democrat Al Franken's victory in the U.S. Senate election trial. And if the Minnesota Supreme Court sees it his way, he said, he thinks he can win."I'm hopeful. I think the law is on our side," he said. In a meeting Thursday with the Star Tribune editorial board, Coleman said that the principle of enfranchising legitimate voters is more important than leaving Minnesota without two senators for another few weeks. But Coleman also acknowledged that many Minnesotans are tired of the seemingly interminable recount process, in which he trails by 312 votes after Monday's ruling by a three-judge panel. He is doing a round of interviews, he said, "for the purpose of letting folks know that we're doing this for a reason."

Republican Burr Looking Vulnerable in 2010 NC Senate Race

Posted Apr 02, 2009 at 1:51 AM
Maurice Berger, Political Director, PollTrack

The Republican incumbent US Senator in North Carolina, Richard Burr, is looking vulnerable in his 2010 reelection effort. According to a recent poll by Public Policy Polling, "Burr continues to have approval ratings worse than Elizabeth Dole’s at the same point in the election cycle two years ago as he prepares to run for reelection in 2010, the newest survey from Public Policy Polling finds. 35% of voters in the state approve of the job Burr is doing, with 32% disapproving. Dole’s numbers were 43%/31% around this time in 2007. Burr leads Secretary of State Elaine Marshall 43%-35% in a hypothetical contest. Dole led Marshall 46%-35% during the period Democrats were recruiting a candidate two years ago. Even after more than ten years in statewide office and a 2002 Senate campaign, more than half of the voters in the state don’t hold any opinion about Elaine Marshall in an either positive or negative direction. 28% of voters have a positive view of her, 19% a negative one, and 53% have no opinion. Tested against a generic Democratic candidate, Burr leads 42-38. That number is somewhat misleading though as 22% of Democrats, unsure who their nominee will be, say they are undecided while only 12% of Republicans report the same."

A recent poll by conservative-leaning think tank Civitas Institute conducted March 16 to 19 "confirmed what many others have found - Burr continues to struggle with name recognition. Fifty percent of registered voters told Civitas they either has no opinion or were unaware of the first-term Republican senator. That is down from 54% when Civitas asked the same question in January. Thirty-seven percent held a favorable opinion of Burr in the most recent poll, which held steady from January. The Civitas poll also showed Burr trailing Democratic Attorney General Roy Cooper 41% to 38% in a hypothetical match-up."

PollTrack makes one observation: with a very popular Barack Obama at the head of the ticket in 2008, Democratic voter groups turned out in very healthy numbers. With Obama not a factor on the 2010 ballot, will Democrats turn out with the same intensity?