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House Dem 203   GOP 214   Ties 19

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strong Dem Strong Dem (48)
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tied Exactly tied (0)
barely GOP Barely GOP (4)
weak GOP Weak GOP (5)
strong GOP Strong GOP (40)
strong Ind Strong Ind (0)
weak Ind Weak Ind (1)
barely Ind Barely Ind (0)
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Senate polls today: AK CA CT DE FL KY OK OR PA UT WA WI iPhone RSS
Dem pickups: (None) GOP pickups: AR CO IL IN NV ND PA WA WI PDA

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News from the Votemaster            

Enthusiasm Gap Narrows to 14%     Permalink

A Marist poll among registered voters gives Democrats the edge 47% to 41%. Among likely voters, it is a tie 46% to 46%. However 49% of Republicans are enthusiastic about voting vs. only 35% of Democrats, a 14% gap. While a disaster for the Democrats, it is at least better than in Marist's previous poll when the gap was 23%. Many other polls have shown the same thing. Among registered voters, Democrats actually lead Republicans, but Republicans are much more fired up and ready to vote. The expected Republican wave on Tuesday will largely be caused by Democrats staying at home and not bothering to vote.

Miller Tanking     Permalink

Alaska is a perpetual source of political surprises, whether is it the governor being tapped to be a Vice Presidential nominee, the same governor later quitting her job midterm, an unknown lawyer beating an incumbent senator in a primary, and now this: that lawyer, tea party favorite Joe Miller (R), is now third in a new poll. Write-in candidate Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) is at 34%, Sitka mayor Scott McAdams (D) is at 29%, and Miller is at 23%.

This is a very significant development since anyone who followed the Coleman-Franken court battle in Minnesota knows that many voters aren't even capable of filling out a normal ballot correctly. When they must fill in the oval and then write in the name of the candidate in a more-or-less comprehensible way, there are going to be vast number of invalid ballots. If McAdams is second, he has a shot at winning due to many of Murkowski's votes being declared invalid. In particular, the voter must fill in the oval next to "Write in." Failure to fill in the oval will result in the write-in vote not registering on the optical scanners. The write-in votes will only be counted if the count of write-in votes is more than the leading candidate or not worse than half a percent below the winner. If the write-in votes are not counted at all, the leading candidate wins.

Run-Down of the Governors' Races     Permalink

While our primary focus has been on Congress, there are also 37 governorships up for grabs this year. Here are the polls released in the past three days for the gubernatorial races.

State Leading % Second % Pollster
Alabama Robert Bentley (R) 48% Ron Sparks (D) 35% U. of Southern Alabama
California Jerry Brown (D) 49% Meg Whitman (R) 39% Field
California Jerry Brown (D) 46% Meg Whitman (R) 38% SurveyUSA
California Jerry Brown (D) 50% Meg Whitman (R) 42% Suffolk U.
California Jerry Brown (D) 51% Meg Whitman (R) 44% Opinion Research
California Jerry Brown (D) 53% Meg Whitman (R) 42% PPP
Colorado John Hickenlooper (D) 48% Tom Tancredo (C) RBI 34%
Colorado John Hickenlooper (D) 51% Tom Tancredo (C) 37% Opinion Research
Connecticut Dan Malloy (D) 45% Tom Foley (R) 45% Merriman
Florida Alex Sink (D) 45% Rick Scott (R) 41% Quinnipiac U.
Florida Alex Sink (D) 46% Rick Scott (R) 43% Mason-Dixon
Florida Rick Scott (R) 48% Alex Sink (D) 45% Rasmussen
Georgia Nathan Deal (R) 47% Roy barnes (D) 41% Insider Advantage
Hawaii Niel Abercrombie (D) 50% Duke Aionoa (R) 45% Merriman
Idaho Butch Otter (R) 52% Keither Allred (D) 30% Mason-Dixon
Maine Paul LePage (R) 40% Libby Mitchell (D) 26% Rasmussen
Michigan Rick Snyder (R) 53% Virg Bernero (D) 35% (D) Detroit News
Minnesota Mark Dayton (D) 41% Tom Emmer (R) 29% U. of Minnesota
Nevada Brian Sandoval (R) 58% Rory Reid (D) 35% Rasmussen
New Mexico Susana Martinez (R) 52% Diane Denish (D) 42% Rasmussen
New York Andrew Cuomo (D) 55% Carl Paladino (R) 35% Quinnipiac U.
Ohio John Kasich (R) 48% Ted Strickland (D) 44% Rasmussen
Ohio John Kasich (R) 49% Ted Strickland (D) 44% SurveyUSA
Oklahoma Mary Fallin (R) 56% Jari Askins (D) 38% Sooner Poll
Oregon Chris Dudley (R) 49% John Kitzhaber (D) 46% Rasmussen
Pennsylvania Tom Corbett (R) 51% Dan Onorato (D) 35% Franklin & Marshall Coll.
Rhode Island Lincoln Chafee (I) 35% John Robitaille (R) 28% NBC
Wisconsin Scott Walker (R) 52% Tom Barrett (D) 42% Rasmussen

Bill Clinton Pushed Meek to Exit the Florida Senatorial Race     Permalink

As expected, the Democrats tried to push Kendrick Meek out of the Senate race and get him to endorse Charlie Crist, who might caucus with the Democrats. The pusher-in-chief was Bill Clinton. Apparently Meek agreed twice but then changed his mind. Had he agreed, he would have been a hero to Democrats. Now he will be crushed and vanish from politics.

DCCC Trying to Build a Firewall     Permalink

The DCCC is trying to save Democrats' majority in the House by pouring money into five races they think they can win. These are NJ-03 (John Adler), PA-08 (Patrick Murphy), PA-07 (Joe Sestak's open seat), OH-18 (Zack Space), and MA-10 (Bill Delahunt's open seat). The first four of these are indeed battlegrounds, but the fact that the DCCC has to spend money to defend a D+5 district in Massachusetts is a big warning sign.

Schumer and Durbin Ready To Do Battle if Reid Falls     Permalink

The vultures are circling. As more and more polls show that majority leader Harry Reid might lose his race to Sharron Angle (R), the #2 Democrat in the Senate, Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), and the #3 Democrat, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), are preparing for an election--leader of the Senate Democrats. It is an election that will have only about 50 or 51 likely voters: the Senate Democrats. Durbin currently outranks Schumer, but that will not stop the ambitious Schumer. As chairman of the DSCC in 2006 and 2008, he helped 14 Democrats take over Republican seats. When the time comes, Schumer will surely remind them they owe their jobs to him. That's 14 votes right off the bat. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand also owes her seat to him, making 15. That means Schumer needs only about 11 or 12 more votes. He is not taking any chances. In his own reelection campaign, the polls put him 20-30% ahead, so he doesn't need his money and is doling it out to other Democrats. While this is not exactly vote buying, everyone in the Senate understands very well what the message is: "When you needed help, I was there for you." So far Schumer has given out $4 million of his own funds to other Democrats. Durbin doesn't have that kind of money to give away, but he does outrank Schumer and is more user friendly than the abrasive Schumer. If Reid falls, the Durbin-Schumer contest will start Nov. 3. It is unlikely Rasmussen or anyone else will do polls on it, unfortunately.

Today's Polls: AK CA CT DE FL KY OK OR PA UT WA WI + 14 House Races     Permalink

New Senate Polls

State Democrat D % Republican R % I I % Start End Pollster
Alaska Scott McAdams 29% Joe Miller 23% Lisa Murkowski 34% Oct 25 Oct 26 Hays Research
California Barbara Boxer* 49% Carly Fiorina 46%     Oct 27 Oct 27 Rasmussen
Connecticut Richard Blumenthal 52% Linda McMahon 44%     Oct 24 Oct 26 Merriman River Group
Delaware Chris Coons 57% Christine O-Donnell 36%     Oct 20 Oct 26 Fairleigh Dickinson U.
Florida Kendrick Meek 15% Marco Rubio 42% Charlie Crist 35% Oct 18 Oct 24 Quinnipiac U.
Kentucky Jack Conway 43% Rand Paul 52%     Oct 24 Oct 27 SurveyUSA
Oklahoma Jim Rogers 24% Tom Coburn* 67%     Oct 18 Oct 23 Sooner Poll
Oregon Ron Wyden* 53% Jim Huffman 42%     Oct 25 Oct 25 Rasmussen
Pennsylvania Joe Sestak 40% Pat Toomey 48%     Oct 24 Oct 27 Muhlenberg Coll.
Utah Sam Granato 32% Mike Lee 48%     Oct 25 Oct 27 Mason Dixon
Washington Patty Murray* 47% Dino Rossi 48%     Oct 26 Oct 26 Rasmussen
Wisconsin Russ Feingold* 44% Ron Johnson 48%     Oct 24 Oct 27 We the People
Wisconsin Russ Feingold* 44% Ron Johnson 53%     Oct 26 Oct 28 PPP

New House Polls

CD Democrat D % Republican R % I I % Start End Pollster
CT-01 John Larson* 56% Ann Brickley 38%     Oct 24 Oct 26 Merriman River Group
DE-AL* John Carney 57% Glen Urquhart 36%     Oct 25 Oct 27 Fairleigh Dickinson U.
HI-01 Colleen Hanabusa 50% Charles Djou* 43%     Oct 23 Oct 23 Merriman River Group
IN-03 Tom Hayhurst 32% Marlin Stutzman 57%     Oct 21 Oct 25 SurveyUSA
KY-03 John Yarmuth* 50% Todd Lally 46%     Oct 21 Oct 25 SurveyUSA
MI-07 Mark Schauer* 50% Tim Walberg 43%     Oct 24 Oct 26 Marketing Research
MN-01 Tim Walz* 50% Randy Demmer 41%     Oct 22 Oct 26 SurveyUSA
NC-02 Bob Etheridge* 41% Renee Ellmers 46%     Oct 21 Oct 24 SurveyUSA
NJ-12 Rush Holt* 51% Scott Sipprelle 43%     Oct 25 Oct 27 Monmouth U.
NY-23 Bill Owens* 40% Matt Doheny 37%     Oct 23 Oct 26 Siena Coll.
PA-10 Chris Carney* 38% Thomas Marino 47%     Oct 24 Oct 25 Critical Insights
PA-11 Paul Kanjorski* 47% Lou Barletta 39%     Oct 24 Oct 25 Critical Insights
VA-05 Tom Perriello* 43% Robert Hurt 51%     Oct 27 Oct 27 SurveyUSA
WA-03 Denny Heck 46% Jaime Herrera 50%     Oct 24 Oct 26 SurveyUSA

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