Oct. 24

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New Senate: DEM 48     Ties 2     GOP 50

New polls: GA IA IL KS MI NH NJ TX
Dem pickups: GA

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Wasserman Schultz Says Obama is Campaigning, but Is Unable to Say Where

In an interview with Bloomberg's "All Due Respect" program, DNC head Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) said that President Obama is campaigning for threatened Senate Democrats in purple districts. But when pressed on the question of "which ones?" she was unable to give an answer. It was a oops moment, although not as bad as Rick Perry being unable to name the three cabinet-level departments he wanted to abolish. The truth is that Obama has not personally campaigned in states where he is unpopular. However, he has raised money for endangered Democrats by holding fundraisers in deep blue states, so what she said was more a poor choice of words than anything else. He has certainly "helped" Democrats in purple states rather than "campaigned" for them.

Is 2014 a Wave Year?

It is already clear that the Republicans are going to pick up many Senate seats. Maybe they will net six seats and take over the Senate, maybe they won't, but they will clearly do well. They will also probably pick up a few House seats. Some conservative pundits have said this is due to the voters' rejecting Obama and the Democratic Party platform.

However, there is another way to look at this: how are Republican governors doing? There the picture is far from clear. Quite a few Republican governors, especially the ones who have governed in a conservative way, are in big trouble. These include Kansas, Alaska, Michigan, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Maine, and Florida. If the Republicans capture the Senate but suffer severe gubernatorial losses in the states where Republican governors adhered to conservative principles, it will be hard to describe 2014 as a wave year.

Hillary Clinton Tries Out Populist Theme

As she campaigned in Minnesota yesterday for Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) and Gov. Mark Dayton (D-MN), Hillary Clinton attacked the big banks indirectly by praising Franken for supporting legislation to reign them in. Franken is going to win his race easily, so he doesn't need her help. Clinton knows very well that every word she says will be put under a microscope to see how this might affect her 2016 campaign. A comment like that is no accident. She could have praised Franken for his excellent constitutent services or a dozen other things. She wants to see how everyone reacts to a potential 2016 theme of attacking the banks.

Today's Senate Polls

We have some interesting polls in multiple states today. Michelle Nunn (D) continues to lead David Perdue (R) in Georgia. She could actually win, but if she doesn't clear the 50% bar, there will be a runoff on Jan. 6. Iowa continues to be a tossup, with Joni Ernst (R) possibly leading Bruce Braley (D) but a very small amount. In Kansas, Independent Greg Orman has once again taken the lead as this race seesaws back and forth. Finally, the NRSC pullout from Michigan has basically ended that race, with Rep. Gary Peters (D-MI) cruising to an easy win.

State Democrat D % Republican R % I I % Start End Pollster
Georgia Michelle Nunn 47% David Perdue 45%     Oct 21 Oct 22 Insider Advantage
Iowa Bruce Braley 46% Joni Ernst 48%     Oct 15 Oct 21 Quinnipiac U.
Illinois Dick Durbin* 50% Jim Oberweis 35%     Oct 02 Oct 08 U. of Illinois
Kansas     Pat Roberts* 44% Greg Orman 49% Oct 20 Oct 21 Rasmussen
Michigan Gary Peters 53% Terri Land 39%     Oct 20 Oct 21 PPP
New Hampshire Jeanne Shaheen* 49% Scott Brown 46%     Oct 15 Oct 21 U. of Mass.
New Hampshire Jeanne Shaheen* 49% Scott Brown 47%     Oct 18 Oct 21 ORC International
New Hampshire Jeanne Shaheen* 49% Scott Brown 48%     Oct 19 Oct 22 ARG
New Jersey Cory Booker* 57% Jeff Bell 33%     Oct 18 Oct 22 Stockton Polling Institute
Texas David Alameel 31% John Cornyn* 57%     Oct 10 Oct 19 U. of Texas

* Denotes incumbent

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