Posts tagged Wisconsin
Tonight, we get the answer to two important questions regarding the future of the United States Senate. Both Wisconsin and Connecticut have their Republican primary elections for their Senate candidates.
Let’s look at the two states, today’s elections, and the implications of the potential outcomes.
Both Democrats and Republicans heading to the polls in Connecticut, but the outcome isn’t really in doubt. For Team Blue, Representative Chris Murphy (D-Cheshire) has consistently polled comfortably ahead of former state Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz. And on Team Red, World Wrestling Entertainment founder Linda McMahon, who in 2010 lost her bid for the United States Senate to Richard Blumenthal, has consistently polled even more comfortably ahead of Chris Shays, who used to represent the Fourth Congressional District until he lost the seat to Jim Himes.
Assuming the outcome matches expectations, Murphy seems likely to win the seat, which is being vacated by independent Senator Joe Lieberman. Murphy has polled ahead of McMahon in every poll conducted to date, though at times by a low single-digit margin. Connecticut is still a “Leans Democratic” state, but with enough room for change between now and November.
This is a more interesting race, at least on the Republican side. For Democrats, the choice is simple: Representative Tammy Baldwin (D-Madison) is the only candidate on the ballot. But for Republicans, there has been a brutal battle among the early favorite, former Governor Tommy Thompson; the recent star, banking executive Eric Hovde; and the underdog, former Representative Mark Neumann (R-Janesville).
As I discussed in “The Ideology Gamble”, the trend is toward more hard-line conservative candidates in the general elections, even at the risk of giving more seats to Democrats. This is another such instance. Thompson is the mainstream Republican candidate, while Hovde is the hard-line Tea Party favorite. Meanwhile, Neumann splits the difference, with a DW-NOMINATE around the current Republican average of +0.7.
All three candidates poll within the margin of error from each other. This is truly anybody’s race.
As has been the history with the ideology gamble, the moderate Thompson polls best against Baldwin, to the point where it’s essentially a tossup between the two, based on historical polls. The other two tend to poll a couple of points worse against Baldwin than does Thompson.
Should Thompson win, Wisconsin’s senate race is a tossup. Should he lose, it’s a “Leans Democratic” state, though just barely.
This, too, will be a state to watch closely over the next three months.
- Favored In GOP Senate Primary, Linda McMahon Faces Critics Left And Right (npr.org)
- McMahon, Murphy Lead in Connecticut (politicalwire.com)
- Jonathan Bernstein: Key Senate nominations tomorrow highlight GOP strategy (washingtonpost.com)
- Connecticut’s Congressional Primary (nytimes.com)
- Northeast GOP’s Hopeless Choices (commentarymagazine.com)
- Back to the Future (wnyc.org)
- The Last Yankee Republican (thedailybeast.com)
- McMahon 2.0: Ready to rumble? (politico.com)
Today we have two elections of significance. California is holding its primaries, and Wisconsin is holding recall elections for the Governor and four state Senators.
In California, the selections for President are foregone conclusions, and decidedly uninteresting, but there are two other state ballot items, and one local, worthy of examination.
First up is the Class 1 Senate seat, currently occupied by Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein. There’s no serious likelihood that she will lose today, but this is the first election in California in which the two Senate candidates with the most votes, regardless of party, will face each other in November. (more…)
Today looks like it’s shaping up to be a very good day for former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney. Perhaps his campaign has managed to shake the Etch-A-Sketch meme.
Two states, plus our sole district, vote today: Maryland, Wisconsin, and the District of Columbia.
Maryland has 37 delegates up for grabs in a closed primary. Three are the usual assigned to the party, ten are at-large winner-take-all, and the remaining 24 are Congressional district winner-take-all.
Romney is assured to get the three party delegates and the ten at-large delegates. He’s also pretty much assured to get all but maybe three of the 24 districts. The panhandle is former Senator Rick Santorum’s (R-PA) strongest territory, and he may pick up one or two districts over there, which would translate to three or six delegates*.
Wisconsin has 42 delegates available in an open primary. Aside from the three party delegates, there are 15 at-large winner-take-all, and 24 Congressional district winner-take-all delegates.
As in Maryland, there’s little doubt that Romney will take the party and at-large delegates, given his near-double-digit lead over Santorum in all polls. But Santorum may be able to pick off a better ratio of the district delegates than he can in Maryland. Even so, Wisconsin can be expected to increase Romney’s delegate lead over the former Senator.
The District of Columbia has 19 delegates in a closed primary. There are the three party delegates, plus 16 winner-take-all. One party delegate has already been assigned to Romney.
This one’s a real snoozer. Romney will walk away with all 19 delegates, period.
So, yes, today’s a very good day for Romney. And a very bad day for those who have been hoping that something, anything, will keep the increasingly inevitable Romination from coming to pass.
*Note: in an earlier version of the article, I incorrectly stated that Santorum might win one or two delegates. In fact, since each district has three winner-take-all delegates, Santorum would either get three or zero for each district.
- Romney, Santorum focus on Wisconsin ahead of Tuesday primaries (politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com)
- Romney Could Double Up on Tuesday (thewesternexperience.com)
- What to Watch in Wisconsin (thedailybeast.com)
- Battle of addition: 147 days until GOP convention (politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com)
- Romney’s Path to Nomination Runs Through Wisconsin (usnews.com)
- Mitt Romney predicts Wisconsin primary win (thehill.com)
- Mitt Romney sings ‘On, Wisconsin’ toward next primary vote (csmonitor.com)
- Romney Looks For Knockout Punch (npr.org)
- Rick Santorum says losing Wisconsin could be good news, vows to continue regardless of outcome (dailykos.com)
- Analysis: Uncertain Week Ahead For Rick Santorum (philadelphia.cbslocal.com)
- Romney Looks For Knock Out Punch (npr.org)
The Wikipedia definition is as good a place as any to start:
Voter suppression is a strategy to influence the outcome of an election by discouraging or preventing people from exercising their right to vote. It is distinguished from political campaigning in that campaigning attempts to change likely voting behavior by changing the opinions of potential voters through persuasion and organization. Voter suppression instead attempts to reduce the number of voters who might vote against the candidate or proposition advocated by the suppressors.
In the short time since the 2010 elections, in state after state with Republican legislatures and Republican governors, under the guise of preventing vote fraud, laws have been introduced which will, unquestionably, have the effect of lowering voter turnout. The specific groups of voters who are most likely to be affected tend to vote Democratic.
Is this simply coincidental? (more…)
What happened this week?
Michele Bachmann won the Ames Straw Poll. Rick Perry declared himself a candidate. Chris Christie and Paul Ryan are flirting, though not with each other. Everyone ignored Ron Paul, except the people who put him into a virtual tie with Bachmann in Ames. Wisconsin completed its historic batch of recalls. The DJIA continued doing strange things. President Obama went on a brief bus tour to promote jobs, while Republicans got their usual knee-jerk hate-on. Rebels made great headway in Libya, but they might have been led by Ron Paul for all the press they got. Until Gadhafi started packing, anyway. European markets took a beating. Gold hit a record high. IBM announced “cognitive computers.”
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The last two of Wisconsin’s historic series of nine recall elections happens today. Incumbent Democrats Jim Holperin of Conover and Robert Wirch of Pleasant Prairie will be defending their seats against Republican challengers Kim Simac and Jonathan Seitz, respectively.
These final two elections seem anticlimactic after Democrats failed to win a majority in the Wisconsin state senate a week ago. The stakes are real, though. Most obviously, Democrats picked up two seats on August 9, putting them in a much better position to influence legislation. Today presents a chance for the Republicans to regain some lost ground.
It is also a possible test of remaining interest and enthusiasm, in an ongoing battle with national repercussions. Wisconsin has been seen as a test of the relative strengths of America’s two major parties in the months leading up to next year’s all-important Congressional, Senate, and Presidential elections. Wisconsin voters, in anger at Republican overreach as exemplified in the arrogance of Wisconsin’s new union-busting laws, sparked a tidal wave of recalls against six Republican state Senators, a wave answered by a backwash directed toward three Democratic counterparts. This is echoed nationally, as the popularity of Congressional Republicans has taken a nosedive, exceeding a smaller but also significant decline in approval of Congressional Democrats. (more…)