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Category Archive for ‘ME-Sen’ at Campaign Diaries
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Archive for the 'ME-Sen' Category


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The electoral consequences of Obama’s Cabinet picks

Ever since Barack Obama’s election, there has been intense speculation surrounding his Cabinet positions. A lot of it has concerned the electoral consequences of tapping Governors, Senators and House members: Would the seat switch parties, who would take over, and what would it mean for the 2010 landscape?

Now that Obama has filled his Cabinet, it is time to offer is a rundown of elected officials who were nominated, those who were rumored but did not make the cut - and what all of this means to the political landscape.

Those who were tapped

  • Hillary Clinton, New York

The unexpected news that Hillary Clinton was being considered for a Secretary of State position captivated the political class throughout November. The deed was finally consummated, capping a remarkable year for Hillary and Barack. Clinton’s nomination also opened a vacancy in one of the country’s largest and most Democratic state, focused everyone’s attention on Governor David Paterson and subsequently on Caroline Kennedy, added a Senate race to the 2010 line-up and provided the GOP a glimmer of hope of picking-up a seat.

  • Tom Dashle, South Dakota

Some Democrats dreamed of Dashle challenging John Thune to a Senate rematch in 2010 - a scenario that is now foreclosed by Dashle’s appointment as HHS Secretary. However, it was always very unlikely that Dashle would jump in the race, so Obama’s pick changed very little electorally.

  • Rahm Emanuel, IL-05

IL-05 is a Chicago-based district that is heavily Democratic. Such an open seat can only mean one thing: A chaotic intra-party battle between dozens of city-level Democrats who have been waiting for years to move up the ladder, with no possibility that a Republican even dream about winning the seat.

  • Janet Napolitano, Arizona

Janet Napolitano’s appointment to the Homeland Security Department is Obama’s one nomination that has already cost Democrats a seat. Republican Secretary of State Jan Brewer will take over as the state’s Governor. Given that Brewer was already mentioned as a possible contender for an open seat in 2010 (Napolitano would not have been able to run due to term limit laws), it seems a safe bet to say that she will run now that she can do so as an incumbent. This gives Republicans the clear upper hand in what was expected to be one of the most competitive open seats of 2010.

  • Bill Richardson, New Mexico

Richardson’s Cabinet prospects seemed to end with Hillary Clinton’s nomination to Foggy Bottom, but the New Mexico Governor will be reborn as Obama’s Secretary of Commerce. A Democrat, Lieutenant Governor Diane Denish, will take over and will thus have the upper-hand in the 2010 gubernatorial election. Due to term-limits, Richardson was not allowed to run for re-election which means that the seat would have been open. But Denish, who was already considered a likely candidate before Richardon’s nomination, can now run as an incumbent.

  • Ken Salazar, Colorado

Ken Salazar’s nomination to the Interior Department created the fourth Senate vacancy due to Barack Obama’s victory. Democratic Governor Bill Ritter will choose Salazar’s successor, and Democrats have a deep enough bench in Colorado that Ritter has plenty of contenders to choose from. (I summarized the politics of this appointment two days ago.) Salazar’s departure from the Senate gives an opening to Republicans, but two factors minimize its impact. First, Salazar was up for re-election in 2010, so this will not add an additional seat for Democrats to defend. Second, Salazar was not safe to start with.

  • Hilda Solis, CA-32

Rep. Solis’s appointment as Secretary of Labor was unexpected, but the special election that will be triggered after Solis’s confirmation won’t give the DCCC many headaches: CA-32 is a very Democratic district that gave John Kerry 62% of the vote in 2004.

  • Tom Vilsack, Iowa

Vilsack’s unexpected nomination as Secretary of Agriculture has one immediate electoral consequence: we are now sure that Vilsack will not run for Senate in 2010. Vilsack might have been the only Democrat strong enough to credibly challenge Senator Chuck Grassley. Vilsack’s nomination might also make it more likely that Grassley run for re-election since he no longer has to worry about spending two grueling years on the campaign trail. All of this said, a Vilsack candidacy was only a possibility, and many considered it unlikely.

Those who were not:

  • Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe, Maine

Some Democrats were pushing the idea of tapping one of Maine’s two moderate Senators as one of the Republican Cabinet members Obama had promised in order to allow Maine’s Democratic Governor to appoint their (Democratic) successor.

  • John Corzine, New Jersey

After Larry Summer’s name faded in mid-November, John Corzine was mentioned as a possible Secretary of the Treasury. This would have elevated State Senate President Richard Codey as acting Governor, a position he already occupied after Jim McGreevey’s resignation in 2004. It would also have meant a far more entertaining gubernatorial race in 2009.

  • Arthur Davis, AL-07

Rep. Davis is said to have statewide ambitions - perhaps as early as 2010 - so this seat could soon be open, but Democrats have little to worry about: This is a heavily Democratic and African-American district that gave Kerry 64% of the vote in 2004.

  • Chet Edwards, TX-17

First mentioned as a vice-presidential contender over the summer, Edwards saw his name back in the mix during Obama’s transition efforts. Edwards represents a heavily Republican district, and it would have been very difficult to envision Democrats holding on to his seat in a special election had Edwards joined Obama’s Cabinet.

  • Jennifer Granholm, Michigan

Michigan’s Governor was mentioned as a top contender for a number of positions, including Secretary of Energy and Secretary of Labor. Her appointment would have elevated Democrat John Cherry in the Governor’s position and given the Democratic Party the early upper-hand in the 2010 gubernatorial election. As it stands now, Granholm is term-limited and the race will be one of the country’s most competitive open seats.

  • Stephanie Herseth, South Dakota

Rep. Stephanie Herseth was mentioned as one of the finalists for the Secretary of Agriculture positions, and her appointment would have been a nightmare for House Democrats. South Dakota remains a Republican enough state that the GOP would have had a great shot at reclaiming the seat in a spring special election. This could have consequences down the line for Tim Johnson’s Senate succession.

  • John Kerry, Massachusetts

The former presidential candidate was rumored to be the most likely to be picked as Secretary of State and Massachusetts Democrats were already preparing for a 2009 special election (there is no gubernatorial appointment in the state). But Hillary Clinton’s unexpected emergence thwarted Kerry’s hopes - and those of the hundreds of Massachusetts Democrats who have been waiting for decades for Senate and/or House seats to open up.

  • Colin Peterson, MN-07

Rumored to have been on the short list for Secretary of Agriculture alongside Rep. Herseth, Peterson’s appointment would have triggered a difficult special election for Democrats. Now Chairman of the House’s Agriculture Committee, Peterson is entrenched and senior enough that he can keep his seat blue, but MN-07 is a Republican-leaning district that gave George Bush big winning margins and that narrowly went for John McCain this year.

  • Jack Reed, Rhode Island

Just like Chet Edwards, Jack Reed made a strong apparition in the summer’s veepstakes, and his name was mentioned as a possible Secretary of State. One reason his prospects might have been thwarted is that Rhode Island’s Governor is a Republican, so a Reed appointment would have resulted in an additional GOP Senator.

  • John Salazar, CO-03

Salazar’s name was often mentioned as Secretary of Interior but his brother - Senator Ken Salazar - ended up getting the nod. This is a relief for House Democrats, as CO-03 is a Republican-leaning district that would have been tough to defend in a special election. (That said, we might still have a vacancy in CO-03 since John is on the list of Democrats who could be appointed to Ken’s Senate seat.)

  • Kathleen Sebelius, Kansas

The Kansas Governor seemed certain to land in Obama’s Cabinet. She had been on his vice-presidential short list and was considered a top contender for a number of positions, including Secretary of Labor. Her statement withdrawing her name from Cabinet considerations was thus one of the biggest surprises of this transition period. (It is of course unclear whether Sebelius issued the statement because she genuinely wanted to help Kansas through the economic crisis or because she had already been told she was unlikely to get an appointment.)

In any case, her withdrawal preserves the governorship in Democratic hands (the next-in-line is a Republican); it could have a huge impact on the upcoming open Senate race. Democrats have not won a Senate race in this state since 1936, and Sebelius is probably the only Democrat who stands a chance. A Cabinet appointment would have barred her from running and would have guaranteed that the Senate race remain in Republican hands.


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Poll watch: McCain tightens national race and PA but remains far behind; McConnell pulls ahead

Update: Two new national polls should help Obama supporters sleep tonight. First, it appears that CBS News is now also conducting a tracking poll, as they just released their second national poll in two days. The margin remains the same, 54% to 41% for Obama among likely voters. Second, the final Gallup/USA Today poll just came out and finds Obama leading 53% to 42% among likely voters; this poll was conducted Friday through today, and carries a huge sample of more than 2400 respondents. Obama led by 7% three weeks ago in this poll, meaning that there is no consistent evidence that the race has tightened. [To make things clear: It appears that this latter poll is Gallup's tracking poll released half-a-day early.]

Original post: McCain has made gains nationally, and there are some signs undecided voters appear to be breaking towards the Republican more than towards his opponent (all polls do not agree on this). He has made gains in Pennsylvania. But 48 hours from polls closing, he is still in a deep hole at the national level and in a number of states that have become must-wins, starting with the Keystone State.

Three new Pennsylvania polls conducted over the past three days have Obama leading by 6% and 7%, certainly a smaller margin than Obama enjoyed just 10 days ago (he has lost 6% in Morning Call in four days and 5% in SUSA in a week) but still a substantial advantage. Unless something dramatic happens tomorrow, it is hard to imagine how McCain can reverse a deficit that all polls agree is at least in the mid-single digits. (Furthermore, Rasmussen’s poll conducted yesterday has him gaining 2% for a 6% lead; since we have to assume that polls are dramatically understating McCain’s support in Pennsylvania if we want to seriously look at the possibility of his comeback bid seriously, which makes trendlines very important.)

Pennsylvania is not a state in which Democrats are likely to be caught by surprise; it is a state in which they have a strong operation and a machine that allowed Al Gore and John Kerry to eke out narrow victories in the past two presidential elections. It is also a state in which they have made gains over the past four years (just read today’s “one year ago today” excerpt in the sidebar). On the other hand, it is a state in which racial factors could disrupt the results if there is indeed such a thing as a Bradley effect; it is also a state in which there is no early voting, meaning that Obama has not locked in any state. In other words, it is as good a state as any for McCain to make his last stand.

At the national level, the bottom line remains the same: Pew and CNN released their final polls, and, while the latter shows McCain gaining a massive 9% in one week as undecideds heavily break towards him, both show Obama retaining a comfortable lead. Similarly, the tracking polls are going in both directions, suggesting most of the movement is statistical noise, and all but IBD/TIPP find a solid lead for the Illinois Senator. Overall, Obama is at or above 50% in eight of the nine national polls released today; McCain’s support ranges from 43% to 46%.

Despite what we are hearing left and right, this suggests that there isn’t that much discrepancy between national polls. And even if a number of surveys suggests that undecided voters are moving towards the Republican nominee, he will have to grab the lion share of undecideds while also pulling away support from Obama. That’s a tall order three days from the election, especially because a fair amount of remaining undecideds are disgruntled Republicans unhappy with Bush. Getting them home is a necessary condition for McCain to mount a comeback, but it is not sufficient.

What is perhaps most worrisome for McCain is that Pennsylvania might not even matter if Obama loses the Keystone State but sweeps Colorado, Nevada and Virginia - which new polls suggests he very well might, despite some tightening in polls from the Old Dominion.

However, here is what gives Republicans some hope: For one, the movement among undecideds. Second, the belief that nearly all pollsters are using a false turnout model. Today’s seven Mason-Dixon polls force us to take that possibility seriously, as Mason-Dixon is a very serious polling outfit that has had great success in past cycles. Like seemingly every other poll they have released this cycle, Mason-Dixon’s polls are more favorable to McCain than other pollsters, suggesting that if Mason-Dixon had a national tracking poll they would find a somewhat tighter race than other firms. The early voting data suggests that turnout will be favorable to Democrats, but such disputes are of course why elections are not decided by polls but by voters… (Note, also, that Mason-Dixon’s polls were conducted Tuesday and Wednesday, making them somewhat outdated.)

  • Obama leads 53% to 46% in CNN’s final national poll conducted Friday and Saturday. Obama has a 8% lead in a four-way race. He led by 5% in a poll conducted two weeks ago.
  • Obama leads 52% to 46% among likely voters in Pew’s final national poll, conducted Thursday through Saturday. This is quite a drop from Pew’s poll conducted the previous week in which Obama led by 15% among likely voters (53% to 38%, implying that undecided voters have heavily broken towards the Republican). Obama leads by 11% among registered voters. 47% are sure they will not vote for McCain, while only 38% say the same about Obama.
  • Trackings: Obama gains 2% in Washington Post/ABC (54% to 43%), 1% in Zogby (50% to 44%). The margin is stable in Rasmussen (51% to 46%), in CBS News (54% to 41%) and Research 2000 (51% to 44%). Obama loses 1% in Gallup (52% to 43%, though he loses 2% in the LVT model for an 8% lead), 2% in Hotline (50% to 45%) and in IBD/TIPP (47% to 45%). Obama’s leads are thus: 2%, 5%, 5%, 6%, 7%, 9%, 11%, 13%.
  • Pennsylvania: Obama stops the bleeding in a Rasmussen poll taken Saturday, leading 52% to 46%; that’s up from the 4% he enjoyed in a Thursday poll but 1% down from a poll taken on Monday. Obama leads 52% to 45% in Morning Call’s tracking poll, his smallest lead since October 1st. Obama lead 51% to 44% in a SUSA poll conducted Thursday and Friday (he led by 12% two weeks ago).
  • Virginia: Obama leads 50% to 46% in a SUSA poll conducted Thursday and Friday, the tightest margin since mid-September. Obama led between 6% and 10% in the past four SUSA polls, though most of the change in this poll can be attributed to a much tighter partisan breakdown. Obama leads 47% to 44% in a Mason Dixon poll conducted Wednesday and Thursday. Of the 9% who are undecided, 75% live outside of Northern Virginia and more than 90% are white. Obama led by 2% ten days ago.
  • Colorado: Obama leads 49% to 44% in a Mason Dixon poll conducted Tuesday and Wednesday. Obama leads among independents by an impressive 25%.
  • Nevada: Obama leads 47% to 43% in a Mason Dixon poll conducted Tuesday and Wednesday. That margin is just within the MoE.
  • Ohio: McCain leads 47% to 45% in a Mason Dixon poll conducted Tuesday and Wednesday. He led by 1% two weeks ago. Obama leads 52% to 46% in a Columbus Dispatch poll that was conducted by mail and that should thus be taken with a huge grain of salt; it widely overstated Democratic support in 2006 though it has also had successes
  • North Carolina: McCain leads 49% to 46% in a Mason Dixon poll conducted Tuesday and Wednesday; the candidates were tied two weeks ago.
  • Missouri: McCain 47% to 46% in a Mason Dixon poll conducted Tuesday and Wednesday; McCain also led by 1% two weeks ago
  • Iowa: Obama leads 54% to 37% in Selzer & Co’s very reliable Des Moines Register poll conducted Tuesday through Thursday.
  • Minnesota: Obama leads 53% to 42% in a Star Tribune poll. He led by the same margin two weeks ago.
  • New Mexico: Obama leads 52% to 45% in a SUSA poll; Obama leads by 19% among the 60% of voters who say they have already voted.

Meanwhile, in down the ballot polls:

  • Kentucky, Senate race: The two pollsters that had found a dead heat in mid-October now find McConnell pulling ahead. SUSA, which had a tie at 48%, now shows McConnell leading 53% to 45%. Mason Dixon has McConnell gaining four points to grab a 5% lead, 47% to 42%.
  • Colorado, Senate race: Mark Udall leads 47% to 43% in a Mason Dixon poll of Colorado’s Senate race, though independents vote for Udall by a large 19%.
  • Minnesota, Senate race: Al Franken leads 42% to 38% in a Star Tribune poll, with 15% going to Barkley. Two weeks ago, Franken led 39% to 36% with 18% for Barkley.
  • In NM-01, an Albuquerque Journal poll conducted this week has Democratic candidate Martin Heinrich leading 47% to 43%.

Mason-Dixon’s Colorado’s poll is further confirmation of the pollster’s GOP lean, as all other pollsters have found a wide Udall lead over the past two weeks; I am not saying that having a GOP lean disqualifies Mason-Dixon (we won’t know whose turnout model is most appropriate until Tuesday), but this one particular margin is not supported by any recent poll. Their poll from Kentucky, however, finds the same findings as SUSA and Rasmussen have this week: Senator McConnell appears to have pulled away. Lunsford is well within striking distance, but with 2 days to go the trendlines favor the incumbent.

In New Mexico, both open races remain highly competitive. (NM-01 is rated lean Democratic in my latest ratings while NM-02 is a toss-up.) The high number of undecided voters in NM-02 leaves hope to Republicans, as that is a conservative district where Republicans could come home.


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Poll watch: Obama leads big in OH, PA, FL, IN and more; Franken narrowly ahead

The clock is running out, and the only good news for McCain today is a IBD/TIPP poll that has him only down 1%. But just like yesterday’s AP poll, that appears to be an outlier as seven other national polls show Obama firmly in command (not to mention that IBD/TIPP has McCain with more than 70% among 18-24 year-old respondents). In fact, Obama leads by double-digits in four of the day’s survey, and McCain remains stuck in the low 40s (39% to 45%) in all eight - including IBD/TIPP.

State polls are even more decisive, and they are breaking in favor of Obama rather than against him. Today’s line-up of surveys has Obama posting some big margins across the country, and what is significant is that these surveys come from different institutes, some of which have not been particularly friendly to the Democrat before (National Journal/All State or Big10, for instance). Obama leads by double-digits in five polls of Pennsylvania, three polls of Minnesota, two polls of Wisconsin, two polls of Ohio and one poll each of Michigan, Iowa and Indiana.

Obama also leads outside of the margin of error in two Florida surveys (something McCain has not done in a single Florida poll for four weeks) and captures a narrow advantage in Montana in the first poll that (finally) includes Ron Paul’s name. He is within striking distance in Georgia, where early voting turnout confirms that he has a shot at making the race very close.

Needless to say, Obama needs to capture very few of the states I just mentioned. If he wins just one of the Big Three (OH, PA and FL), he will be in a very good position to capture the presidency; two would ensure victory; and even an (at this point unlikely) defeat in all three would certainly not be the end of his ambitions: A sweep of Colorado, Virginia and Nevada (or any of these replaced by Indiana, Missouri or North Carolina) could replace the Keystone State. With all of this in mind, let’s go on to today’s full roundup:

  • Obama maintains a double-digit lead in the latest NYT/CBS poll. He is ahead 52% to 39% (he led by 14% last week). He leads by 6% among independents. 62% feel “personally connected” to Obama, 47% to McCain; more voters think Obama has the right temperament and personality to be president, and more voters think Obama would handle a crisis well. Palin’s favorability rating remains negative.
  • Obama keeps his dominant position in the tracking polls. He gains 2% in Zogby (52% to 40%) and 1% in Rasmussen (52% to 45%). The race stays stable in Hotline (48% to 43%), ABC/Washington Post (54% to 43%) and Research 2000 (51% to 41%). Obama slips 1% in Gallup (51% to 45%) and 3% in IBD/TIPP (where he is only up 1%, 45% to 44%). That puts Obama’s lead in the day’s trackings at: 1%, 5%, 6%, 7%, 10%, 11%, 12%.
  • Ohio: Obama leads by double-digits in two new polls, his biggest leads ever in the state. He leads 52% to 38% in a Quinnipiac survey (he led by 8% three weeks ago). He leads 53% to 41% in a Big 10 Battleground poll.
  • Florida: Obama leads outside of the MoE in two new surveys. He is ahead 49% to 44% in a new Quinnipiac poll (he led by 8% three weeks ago). He leads 49% to 42% in a St. Petersburg Times/Miami Herald poll. Obama seizes a big lead among independents in the latter, which was taken Monday through Wednesday.
  • Indiana: Obama leads 51% to 41% in a Big10 poll. The race was tied in mid-September.
  • Michigan: Obama leads by a stunning 58% to 36% in a Big10 poll.
  • Georgia: McCain leads 51% to 46% in a Rasmussen poll. McCain led by 9% two weeks ago.

Meanwhile, in down the ballot polls:

  • Proposition 8 is losing 52% to 44% in a PPIC poll. However, the “no” was ahead 55% to 41% five weeks ago.
  • Minnesota’s Senate race: Democrat Al Franken narrowly leads in two polls. In Rasmussen, he is ahead 41% to 37% with 17% for Barkley. Two weeks ago, Franken led by 6%. In a University of Wisconsin poll, he is ahead 40% to 34% with 15% for Barkley.
  • In Kentucky’s Senate race, GOP Sen. Mitch McConnell leads 47% to 43% in a Research 2000 poll.
  • In Georgia’s Senate race, GOP Sen. Saxby Chambliss leads 47% to 45% in a Rasmussen poll. He led by 6% two weeks ago.
  • In Louisiana’s Senate race, Democratic Sen. Landrieu leads 53% to 43% in a Rasmussen poll. She led by 14% last month.
  • In Washington’s gubernatorial race, Democratic Gov. Gregoire leads 50% to 48% in a Rasmussen poll.
  • In IL-11, Democrat Debby Halvorson leads 50% to 37% in a new SUSA poll.
  • In PA-12, Democratic Rep. Murtha is only up 46% to 41% in a new Susquehanna poll.
  • In WA-08, Democrat Darcy Burner storms back to grab a 50% to 46% lead in a new SUSA poll. Reichert trailed by 10% three weeks ago.
  • In MI-09, Democrat Gary Peters leads 46% to 36% against Rep. Knollenberg in a DCCC internal.
  • In OH-15, Democrat Mary Jo Kilroy leads 44% to 36% in a DCCC poll. She led by the same margin three three weeks ago.
  • In AL-02, Democrat Bobby Bright leads 50% to 43% in a DCCC poll.

Senate: It is difficult to know what to make of the Minnesota Senate race. Barkley is holding stable just under 20%, but his support is not firm: It could end up at a far lower point, but it could also end up rising if voters come to think he has a chance of pulling it off. In either case, it is impossible to know how that would affect Coleman and Franken’s totals.

House: Democrats get great news from SUSA. Darcy Burner appeared to be fading in WA-08, but she has now led in three polls in a row. The first two were Democratic polls, now an independent pollster confirms her comeback. IL-11 was once going to be an easy pick-up before GOP candidate Ozinga proved surprisingly resilient. Now, the Democratic surge appears to have buried Republican prospects of a come-from-behind victory here.

Furthermore, a trio of DCCC poll completes the strong news for Democrats, especially when combined with the NRCC pulling out of MI-09. That said, Susquehanna’s poll from PA-12 confirms the Democrats’ worst fear that Rep. Murtha’s recent comments about his districts has endangered his re-election prospects.


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Poll watch: Trackings tighten but Obama remains in command; Hagan, Collins and M. Udall lead

The latest tracking polls suggest the presidential race might be tightening. Though the trend lines are not uniform, Obama’s biggest lead is 7% whereas last Saturday three trackings had him at 9%, 10% and 12%. In fact, compared to last week four of five trackings have McCain in a significantly stronger position, while the margin is the same in the fifth. That said, it also looks like all the trackings are converging to a similar 6-7% range, with most of the six polls released today going in opposite directions but towards that margin:

  • Research 2000 had shown a double-digit lead for Obama (between 10% and 13%) since September 13th; today’s poll showed a lead of “only” 7%, 50% to 43%. Given the stability of the past three weeks, this was certainly a noticeable drop, especially because it is due to two consecutive nights of tighter polling (+6% on Wednesday night and +7% on Thursday night). On the other hand, IBD/TIPP had been showing a tighter race than the other trackings, but Obama has now opened up a 7% lead.
  • A third tracking poll (Diego Hotline) also shows a 7% lead, down from 10% yesterday but similar to the last pre-debate poll. Two other trackings have slightly smaller margins, but no uniform trends: Obama’s lead in Zogby goes from 5% to 4% while his edge in Rasmussen goes from 4% to 5%.
  • That leaves us with the silliness that has become Gallup’s tracking poll. Gallup’s reputation should make its tracking poll the most important of the bunch, but the firm’s decision to release three different daily measures is making this impossible to follow: Obama’s lead today is 2% (likely voters, traditional model), 4% (likely voters, expanded model and down from 6% yesterday) and 8% (registered voters, up from 7% yesterday). Gallup thus ensures it cannot be wrong by offering a variety of margins and a trend towards both men - but how are we to know just what model Gallup thinks reflects the situation on the ground, what model Gallup’s interviews are suggesting should be the closest to the truth?

Taken together, these polls should give the McCain campaign some reason to hope, as Obama’s lead appears to now be hovering in the mid-to-high single digits, a far more manageable gap than the double-digit advantage Obama was posting last week. It should also serve as a big relief for Republicans, as the post-debate snap polls favored Obama and suggested that the Democrat’s lead would grow rather than shrink.

That said, a 5% to 7% lead in the second half of October is far more significant than a similar lead in the summer. Bush only led by more than 5% in three polls in the entire month of October 2004. Furthermore, it will take a few more days to see whether the national tightening (if there is indeed a tightening) will be spread homogeneously across the country or if it will primarily affect certain regions or demographics. Yesterday, we saw a few post-debate state polls that had Obama in a commanding position (CO, NV and MO). Today’s state polls were taken before the debate, but they have good news for Obama:

  • Despite most recent polls showing Obama in the lead in Virginia, McCain leads in Real Virginia. It is unclear how many electoral votes the McCain campaign expects to gain from Real Virginia, nor by how much the GOP’s polls show McCain leading Real Virginia.
  • Obama leads 46% to 44% in a Research 2000 poll of North Carolina. A month ago, McCain led by 17%, but that survey looked like an outlier. The poll was taken on the 14th and 15th, so right before the debate.
  • Obama leads 53% to 38% in a Research 2000 poll of Maine. He leads 58% to 35% in the first district and 52% to 41% in the second district, so there is little danger of McCain snatching away an electoral vote.
  • Obama leads 47% to 43% in a poll of Florida conducted by a Democratic firm, Hamilton Campaigns, before the debate. One big problem in the poll’s internals is that Obama leads by 18% among Hispanics. Republicans are very strong among Florida Hispanics because of the high number of Cubans, and most other polls show McCain with a narrow edge among that constituency. Obama leads in the crucial Tampa region.

Meanwhile, in down-the-ballot polls:

  • Susan Collins leads 53% to 40% in a Research 2000 poll of Maine Senate race. 32% of Democrats cross-over to vote for Collins. She led by 19% in mid-September.
  • Mark Begich leads 48% to 46% in a Research 2000 poll of Alaska’s Senate race. A month ago, he led by 6%.
  • Ethan Berkowitz leads 50% to 44% in a Research 2000 poll of AK-AL. A month ago, he led by 14%.
  • In MN-06, an internal poll for the Bachmann campaign has her leading 44% to 33%. The poll was taken on the 12th and 13th. A DCCC poll taken last week had Bachmann leading by 4%.
  • In VA-02, Rep. Drake leads 47% to 42% in an internal poll for her Democratic challenger.
  • In CA-50, an internal poll for the Bilbray campaign has him leading 48% to 35%; an internal poll for the Leibham campaign has Bilbray leading 44% to 42%.

Senate: No surprises whatsoever among these four surveys: The Alaska race is entirely dependent on the outcome of Stevens’ trial (the jury should start to deliberate on Tuesday) while Hagan retains a slight edge. As for Maine, it is not looking good for Allen - just as we have known for months. It might make sense for the DSCC to invest in the race given how cheap the state’s media markets are, but the money could be put to better use with a bigger DSCC investment in Kentucky or Georgia.

House: Bachmann’s race is one many people are now interested in, and it confirms what we already know: Bachmann is slightly favored, but she is vulnerable. Depending on how much the DCCC invests, this race could certainly emerge as a hotspot, though Tinklenberg’s newly-raised half-a-million will certainly come in handy. In AK-AL, Berkowitz retains a lead but Young remains within striking distance, something other polls have also found. It is very much possible that a not guilty verdict for Stevens could also prove a boost for Young.


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GOP sinks in coastal South: Obama ahead in FL, biggest leads yet in VA, NC; Dole, Chambliss fall

[Updated with ABC's new OH poll] If last Wednesday will be remembered as the day Obama surged ahead in the polls, that is nothing compared to the stunning numbers Obama posts today. His strength is evident in so many different ways that it is hard to know where to start - but what is evident is that the race is breaking in Obama’s direction, and that Republicans will have to play catch-up in a way we have not seen either party have to do in the past two presidential elections.

First, Obama’s national numbers are now regularly coming in at 50% or higher, and CNN’s new survey finds the Democrat with his highest level of support ever in a national poll - 53%. In other words, McCain needs to do more than convince undecided voters, he also needs to peel away voters who are currently leaning towards Obama.

Second, McCain’s numbers are collapsing in most of the crucial red states. Obama jumps to his biggest lead yet in NC (6%) and he is ahead by 12% and 10% in two VA surveys! He is also ahead by 6% in a new ABC poll of Ohio. Rasmussen does show better numbers for McCain in Ohio and Virginia, but Republicans can hardly take comfort in Rasmussen’s latest release: the Arizona Senator has fallen behind outside of the margin of error in FL (a 12% swing over the past two weeks) and in CO.

These numbers are not outliers. For instance, this is the fifth poll in a row to find Obama ahead in the Sunshine State by margins ranging from 3% to 8%. Unless McCain wins a blue state (which is looking increasingly unlikely, as the third straight poll finds Obama jumping to a huge lead in NH), he has to sweep all red states but IA and NM. Obama today leads in at least one poll of OH, NC, VA, FL, CO, MO - and he only leads one of these states. On to the day’s full roundup:

  • Today’s tracking polls continue to show Obama in a dominant position, and continuing to inch beyond the 50% mark. He reaches 52% for the first time ever in Rasmussen’s poll and leads 52% to 44%. In Gallup, he is ahead 50% to 42%. In Diego Hotline, the margin is smaller - 47% to 41%. And Research 2000 finds the Democrat leading 52% to 40% for the third straight day.
  • Obama expands his lead in a new CNN national poll and leads 53% to 45%. This is the first time Obama has ever reached 53% in any national poll.
  • Obama leads 49% to 43% in a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll. That’s under 50%, but it is an improvement over his 2% lead two weeks ago. Independents have swung by 17% in that time. 35% of voters (40% of white voters) say they are bothered by Obama’s connections to people the Journal describes as “unpopular black figures.”
  • Obama leads by a shocking 52% to 45% in a Rasmussen poll of Florida. McCain led by 5% two weeks ago, the candidates were tied last week. One big change is that Obama is finally strong among registered Democrats.
  • Obama surges ahead 51% to 45% in a Rasmussen poll of Colorado. He led by 1% last week.
  • Obama leads 50% to 47% in a Rasmussen poll of Missouri. He trailed by 5% three weeks ago. Obama’s strength comes first and foremost from the 88% he receives among registered Democrats.
  • McCain leads 48% to 47% in a Rasmussen poll of Ohio. Obama is stronger than usual among registered Democrats (85%), but McCain’s party loyalty is stronger. This poll is McCain’s only good news of the day.
  • Obama leads 50% to 44% in a PPP poll of North Carolina. This is his biggest lead yet in any poll of North Carolina (he led by 2% last week). This is also the first time Obama is above 80% among registered Democrats in a PPP survey.
  • Obama leads 53% to 43% in a SUSA poll of Virginia. He led by 6% two weeks ago. Obama climbs among white voters. Note that the sample is more Democratic than the previous ones, but Obama improves his position among independents and Republicans as well.
  • Obama leads 51% to 39% in a Suffolk poll of Virginia. Suffolk polls in other states have not been particularly unexpected.
  • Obama leads 50% to 48% in a Rasmussen poll of Virginia. This is a 1% gain for McCain over last week’s poll.
  • Obama leads 53% to 40% in a SUSA poll of New Hampshire.

Meanwhile, in down-ballot polls:

  • Jeanne Shaheen leads 48% to 40% in a SUSA poll of New Hampshire’s Senate race.
  • Kay Hagan leads 49% to 40% in a PPP poll of North Carolina’s Senate race. She led by 8% last week and by 3% two weeks ago. This is her biggest lead in any poll. Libertarian Chris Cole gets 5%.
  • Susan Collins leads 53% to 43% in a Rasmussen poll of Maine’s Senate race. She led by 13% in August.
  • A DSCC poll finds a similar margin, though Collins is under 50% and leads 49% to 41%.
  • An internal DCCC poll finds Democrat Ashwin Media ahead in MN-03, 44% to 39%. Independent Party candidate David Dillon gets 8%.

Senate: The Democrats’ quest to put new seats in play just four weeks from the election seems to be paying off in Georgia, as this is the closest margin we have seen yet in this race. It comes in the heels of two surveys - one conducted for the DSCC, one conducted by SUSA - that found Chambliss’s lead within the margin of error. So will the DSCC invest in the race? In Maine, however, Collins remains solid. Sure, the margin has tightened but consistently trailing by “only” 10% isn’t anything for Democrats to celebrate. The DSCC just went up on air in this state, however, so we will see whether there is any movement in the upcoming weeks.

As for North Carolina, very few pollsters other than PPP and Rasmussen are surveying the state, so we cannot compare PPP’s numbers to those of other pollsters. But despite the fact that PPP is a Democratic firm, there is very little reason to doubt that Hagan is indeed pulling ahead. For one, PPP found Dole up by big margins earlier this year (a 14% lead in July, for instance). Second, GOP operatives sound very worried about this race.

House: The only new numbers here are internal Democratic polls (though it is no coincidence that we are only rarely getting polls released by GOP candidates or by the NRCC), so take them with a grain of salt. But they obviously bring very good news for Democrats in two toss-up districts. In NY-29 in particular, an incumbent in the low 40s is bound to face big trouble.


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Senate: As DSCC attacks Collins, fireworks continue in NH and KY

Maine: While Maine is less Democratic than other New England states, it remains liberal enough that Democrats were hoping Susan Collins would be hurt by Bush’s unpopularity and the damage done to the GOP brand. That has not happened. A month from Election Day, no polls have shown any sign that Collins is vulnerable, but that is not preventing Democrats from trying to pull this race into the top-tier.

Maine is a relatively inexpensive state to advertise in, which might explain the DSCC’s decision to go up on air against the incumbent Senator with an ad blaming her for the lack of Senate oversight over the Iraq War:

[youtube="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K0TRSGX9Ivo"]

To complement the DSCC’s ad, Tom Allen released a spot attacking Collins’ for her proximity to Bush on economic policies:

[youtube="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RuUnFPMq1Es"]

In a race that long remained remarkably drama-free, Democrats are looking to take the gloves off. With four weeks, they will need to hit all the right notes if they want to have any hope of making this race competitive - let alone actually win it. So Collins remains heavily favored for now, but the DSCC’s willingness to go after her suggests that we could still see some movements. We will hopefully get some polling numbers to reflect soon to determine whether the economic crisis and Democratic attacks are hurting the Republican.

Oregon: Gordon Smith does it again. After releasing various ads tying himself to Democratic state lawmakers, to Barack Obama and to John Kerry, the Oregon Republican continues his efforts to portray himself as a bipartisan and moderate Senator with a new spot that highlights his cooperation with Ted Kennedy to pass a bill against hate crimes after Matthew Shepard’s death:

[youtube="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wHK2VAOE8hU"]

Smith is not in very good shape, as the Republican label has taken another hit in recent weeks just as he was trying to do his best to distance himself from it. To make matters worse, Oregon’s vote is conducted entirely by mail, which means that this is one state in which voters who are still persuadable are sure to vote before Election Day - and some might be sending in their decision as we speak, in the midst of an economic crisis that helps Jeff Merkley wage the battle on a turf that is more favorable to him.

Attack ads in Kentucky, Colorado and New Hampshire: Business continues as usual in three hotly contested Senate races in which heavy artillery has been deployed in recent weeks. In New Hampshire, a new NRSC ad hits Jeanne Shaheen with ethical charges, accusing her of taking money in exchange of political favors (most of the press clips are taken from the conservative Union Leader):

[youtube="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VctITySKaCs"]

While Shaheen remains narrowly in the lead in the Granite State, the race has clearly tightened due to a wave of Republican ads that tout Sununu’s achievements while hitting Shaheen’s gubernatorial record. This is among the hardest hitting attack ads the NRSC has launched at Shaheen.

Meanwhile, in Kentucky, Mitch McConnell and Bruce Lunsford have been hurling insults at each other for months. Earlier this week, I wrote about an ad Lunsford released in which a veteran blasted McConnell for twisting his words. McConnell is back with a follow-up that pursues a story Republicans believe is Lunsford’s biggest vulnerability - reports of patients being mistreated at Lunsford’s health care facility:

[youtube="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=813UV-4wv5c"]

New attack ads are also running in other races, including Colorado, a competitive contest I admit we only rarely talk about. The DSCC’s latest spot blasts Schaffer for supporting Bush’s economic policies. “Bush is leaving Washington,” says the ad, “why should we send Schaffer back?” That’s a clever line for Democrats to go around the Republicans’ counter that the Democrats’ focus on Bush suggests they are stuck in the past (as Palin repeated on Thursday night).

North Carolina: Who would have thought just two months ago that Elizabeth Dole could possibly be this vulnerable? It was only in mid-July that it became clear that Democrats were fully committed to making this race their 9th target; now, Kay Hagan looks to be in a stronger position than Democratic candidates in races that were once ranked far higher - including Al Franken or Ronnie Musgrove. And while the race is still very much a toss-up, Republican operatives are sounding shockingly pessimistic in a new Politico story:

“A top official in the McCain camp told us Sen. Elizabeth Dole is virtually certain to lose in conservative North Carolina… Top Republicans say they have no hope for Dole in North Carolina. ‘There’s no point in even counting the votes,’ said a top McCain official.”

This could certainly be an attempt to spin Democrats into complacency - or it might reflect the GOP’s genuine concern that something is going deeply wrong in North Carolina’s federal races.


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Haven’t we seen this movie before?

Congressional Democrats who had long hoped that 2008 would be another 2006 might be getting their wish, though It is still too early to tell whether current trends will maintain themselves all the way to November 4th.

Just a few weeks ago, it looked like Republicans would avoid being submerged by a blue tsunami. The GOP brand appeared to be improving and independents seemed less hostile to the idea of voting Republican. But just as 2006, late September events look like they could shatter the GOP’s defenses. Sure, the financial crisis might be more consequential than Mark Foley, but that scandal was an earthquake that cost Republicans any hope they had of recovering.

This year, the Wall Street meltdown has caused voters’ disapproval of government to skyrocket along with voters’ economic insecurity; and while Congress might no longer be in Republican hands, both developments are guaranteed to boost Democratic prospects as long as the White House is in Bush’s hands and as long as Democrats remain the party of bread-and-butter issues.

Voters are once again angry, and they are angry about the economy. Further economic developments could certainly change the situation, but this has certainly boosted Democratic hopes that the national environment will once again outweigh local patterns and carry unlikely candidates to victory on the strength of anti-GOP sentiment.

At the top of the ticket, this new dynamic has undercut John McCain’s campaign, but the Arizona Senator remains standing. Just as we have long known that McCain was one of the only Republicans who was separate enough from the Bush Administration to have any hope of prevailing, McCain has enough cards to play to hope to survive voter discontent, which is why it remains amazing that the Republican nominee chose to return to Washington and associate himself that closely with an unpopular Congress and an unpopular bill.

But other Republicans don’t have McCain’s stature, and a new Democracy Corps poll of battleground districts suggests that Republicans are losing ground in at least 40 seats they hold and in which the pollsters asked voters about House match-ups. Republicans’ situation has deteriorated since July, a number of incumbents are endangered and Democrats look particularly strong in the GOP’s open seats. This is a very similar situation as 2006, where Democrats scored big wins in a big number of open seats, and did so again in 3 special elections this spring.

The trouble Kentucky’s Mitch McConnell finds himself in is telling of the worsening situation Republicans find themselves in. SUSA and Mason Dixon found McConnell’s race against Bruce Lunsford down to a dead heat last week in what could be a direct repercussion of McConnell’s leadership role in the Senate. Now, Stuart Rothenberg reports that he has seen a third poll - a private one about which he releases no details - that confirms that the race is a dead heat. This is prompting the Kentucky press to take notice of the race’s increasing competitiveness, which is in and of itself a positive development for Lunsford since it is always important for a challenger to be taken as a serious contender by the media. Will the DSCC cavalry come next?

Can other Democrats who are facing long shots take advantage of the situation? Can Tom Allen of Maine - perhaps the year’s most disappointing congressional race for Democrats - put Susan Collins on the defensive? Collins looks to be made of rock, as nothing has dented her lead, but it is truly now or never for Allen to link Collins to her party and to the Bush Administration - and this is exactly what the Democratic candidate is doing in a new ad. But this is a race where all of this might be too little, too late. Collins has shown no sign of vulnerability, and Allen remains a long shot.

There is one major difference between 2006 and 2008, however: Democrats have much more money, Republicans far less. While it would be unfair to say that the DCCC or the DSCC were under-funded two years ago, they faced some painful choices in the final stretch, and the DCCC’s failure to fund candidates like Larry Kissell in NC-08 surely cost them a few seats. This year, the situation is very different. Last week alone, the DCCC spent more than $4 million and targeted 27 Republican seats; the RNCC spent… $75,000. That stunning 57:1 ratio makes Mike Bloomberg’s ridiculous overspending seem amateurish, and it will allow Democrats to leave no stone unturned.

While Democrats exploit the anti-GOP environment, it is very important for Republicans to run a micro campaign and disqualify individual Democratic candidates in order to put them on the defensive and prevent them from positioning themselves as reformers, outsiders or change agents. And it looks like the GOP has once again to take the initiative against Al Franken in Minnesota. No candidate wants to run ads addressing  charges relating to rape five weeks from Election Day, but that is exactly what Franken has had to do this week:

[youtube="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kPaN6hKS51Q"]

That’s right, in the midst of a giant financial crisis that gives any Democrat an opening to destabilize his opponent, Al Franken has to air ads defending himself against “desperate attacks that will not work” but that must be working in some way if Franken is taking the time to address them (not that Franken is being careful to denounce the GOP ads over their negativity rather than over their substance, as the last thing Franken wants is to get in a he said, she said about rape jokes and assault charges). And the NRSC is keeping up, releasing yet another ad hitting Franken on similar charges:

[youtube="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bNj7A1qZdNI"]

Given how much time Franken has spent defending himself against all sorts of charges for the past few months, it is a testament to the cycle’s anti-Republican bent that the race remains a toss-up.


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Poll watch: Michigan swings Obama, Merkley gains, GOP competitive in Alaska races

The battle lines are getting clearer in the presidential race. With Iowa and New Mexico leaning Obama and the Democrat inching ahead in Colorado, keeping the Kerry states would be enough to get Obama to the White House - and he can even afford to lose New Hampshire since a tie favors Obama. With that in mind, we will keep a particularly sharp eye on polls from Colorado, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Minnesota.

And today’s news is good for Obama: he continues to post a narrow but consistent advantage in Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, and Michigan appears to be breaking open in his favor. Three out of five surveys released today have him leading between 8% and 13%, a margin supported by Marist’s 9% earlier this week and Obama’s 5% (7% among registered voters) yesterday. However, Mason Dixon does find a tie in the Wolverine State today.

As long as those five states break Obama’s way, the other states lose importance, so forgive my glancing over the latest toss-up poll from Ohio, McCain’s semi-comforting 8% lead in West Virginia or Obama’s two three 1% leads in New Hampshire. And don’t forget Rasmussen North Carolina survey that I wrote extensively about early this morning. Another poll of importance is Obama’s 5% lead in the latest NYT/CBS poll.

First, the five polls from Michigan:

  • Obama leads 48% to 38% in an EPIC-MRA poll of Michigan. Obama led by only 1% in a EPIC-MRA survey taken just a few days ago.
  • Obama leads 51% to 38% in a Detroit Free Press poll of Michigan conducted by Selzer & Co. Obama leads by 15% when voters are asked which candidate they trust on the economy.
  • The candidates are tied in a Mason Dixon/NBC poll of Michigan. Here, McCain does well in the Detroit suburbs (home of Reagan Democrats), which is key to a victory here.

It’s not a surprise that Michigan would be the state in which we would see the biggest shift as the conversation turns to the financial crisis, as this is among the most hard-hit state economically. But it is a major development, as the McCain campaign (and polls) had long regarded Michigan as the GOP’s biggest opportunity to pick up a blue state. However, note that both campaigns have recently been spending more in Pennsylvania than in Michigan, suggesting that the Keystone State is being recast in its traditional role of most-vulnerable-Democratic-state.

On to other presidential polls, including the three polls from Pennsylvania:

  • Obama leads 47% to 42% in a new CBS News/New York Times national poll. This is the same margin as last week. McCain reclaims the lead among independents.
  • Obama leads 49% to 45% in a Rasmussen poll of Pennsylvania taken Wednesday. He led by 3% in a poll taken on Saturday, so a stable race.
  • Obama leads 50% to 44% in a SUSA poll of Pennsylvania.
  • Obama also leads 46% to 45% in a Suffolk poll of New Hampshire.
  • Obama leads 52% to 41% in a SUSA poll of Oregon. He led by 3% last month.
  • Obama only leads 49% to 44% in a SUSA poll of Maine, which could make him lose one 1EV - and one he cannot afford to lose if he loses New Hampshire as well. (This poll does find McCain leading among 18-34 year old voters.)
  • McCain leads 50% to 42% in a Rasmussen poll of West Virginia. That is a more reassuring lead than other surveys have found lately, and keep in mind that Obama is not investing in the state (though some WV markets overlap with markets from swing states in which Obama ads are running).
  • Safe red states: McCain leads 51% to 42% in a Rasmussen poll of Arkansas.

Meanwhile, in down-the-ballot polls:

  • Jeff Merkley has gained 14% in two months in SUSA’s poll of Oregon’s Senate race and taken a narrow lead (within the MoE), 44% to 42%. Constitution Party candidate Dave Brownlow gets 8%, probably helping Merkley.
  • Two polls from Alaska’s Senate race find close races: Farleigh Dickinson has Begich leading 47% to 43%, Ivan Moore finds Begich leading 48% to 46% (he led by 3% two weeks ago).
  • Two polls from AK-AL find that Don Young is still alive: Farleigh Dickinson has Berkowitz leading 47% to 41%, Ivan Moore has Berkowitz leading 49% to 44% (he led by 17% two weeks ago). Berkowitz’s unfavorability rating has shot up in Ivan Moore.
  • Kay Hagan leads yet again in a Rasmussen poll of North Carolina’s Senate race - the second Rasmussen took over the past 7 days. She had a 6% lead last week (her largest yet), 3% today: 48% to 45%.
  • Susan Collins does not tremble in a SUSA poll of Maine’s Senate race. She continues to crush Tom Allen 55% to 39%.
  • Jeb Bradley leads Democratic Rep. Shea-Porter 45% to 42% in a UNH poll. He led by 6% in July. Paul Hodes leads by 12%  in his district.
  • An internal poll for the Nye campaign finds the Democrat closing the gap in VA-02, but she still trails 45% to 40%.
  • [Corrected, previous write-up of MI-07 was horribly mistaken] Democratic challenger Mark Schauer of MI-07 released an internal poll finding him leading 42% to 36% against Rep. Walberg. He led by 3% in a May survey.
  • Safe seats: Biden and Markell lead in SUSA polls of Delaware’s senatorial and gubernatorial races. Kerry leads in Massachusetts.

Some excellent news for both parties, as Democrats will be heartened that Hagan and Merkley continue to be more than competitive despite GOP ads stepping up their attacks. MI-07 is undoubtedly one of the Democrats top targets, and any incumbent polling at 36% (even in an internal poll) is in danger. But Republicans will take comfort in the fact that neither of Alaska’s races appear to be over, as the two GOP incumbents are making somewhat of a comeback. The question now is how voters will react to the month-long coverage of Stevens’ trial. Odds are that the coverage of the Senator’s corruption will also hurt Young’s standing.


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Poll watch: Obama leads in IA, PA, MI while IN remains very tight; Dems lead in AK-AL and CO-04

Another day of strong polling results for Obama - this time at the state level. SUSA confirms that the Illinois Senator can feel more confident about Iowa than about many Kerry states, Marist finds larger leads than we have seen lately for Obama in the crucial states of Michigan and Pennsylvania (two states that are quasi-must wins for Obama) and two surveys from Indiana find the race within the margin of error. Who knew the Hoosier State would be polled so much?

What is fascinating about the Marist polls is that the surveys were taken over the week-end (thus before the financial crisis exploded) in Ohio and Pennsylvania, and at the beginning of this week in Michigan. The share of voters who say that they are most concerned about the economy is far greater in the Michigan poll (51%), which explains why Obama has such a large lead and confirms that the dominance of economic issues this week is helping fuel Obama’s comeback. Here’s the full roundup of today’s polls:

  • First, the trackings, where the movement is less uniform than it was yesterday: Obama gains one in Research 2000 (leads 49% to 42%) and in Gallup (leads 49% to 44%). Rasmussen doesn’t move (tied at 48%) and McCain gains 3% in Diego Hotline (but still trails 45% to 44%).
  • Obama leads 47% to 45% in a Marist poll of Ohio. The two are tied among registered voters. Those who say that the economy is the most important issue for them vote Obama by 14%. Obama gets 90% of Democrats. This poll was taken Thursday through Sunday.
  • Obama leads 49% to 44% in a Marist poll of Pennsylvania. The margin is 3% among registered voters. Obama gets 87% of Democrats and leads among independents. This poll was taken Thursday through Sunday.
  • Obama leads 52% to 43% in a Marist poll of Michigan. The margin is the same among registered voters. Obama gets 92% of Democrats, leads by 14% among those who say the economy is the most pressing issue. This poll was taken Tuesday and Wednesday, after the Wall Street collapse.
  • McCain leads 49% to 47% in a Rasmussen poll of Indiana. He led by 6% in August.
  • McCain leads 47% to 44% in an ARG poll of Indiana.
  • Obama leads 54% to 43% in a SUSA poll of Iowa. He gets 89% of Democrats and leads by 11% among independents. Among voters who are sure of their vote, he leads by 15%.
  • McCain leads 53% to 42% in an ARG poll of North Dakota.
  • Obama leads 50% to 44% in an ARG poll of Washington.
  • McCain leads Obama 64% to 31% in a SUSA poll of Alabama.
  • McCain leads 61% to 34% in an ARG poll of Oklahoma.

There is good news for McCain as well in this batch of surveys, most notably his strong margin in North Dakota (a state Obama has been contesting). A Rasmussen poll last week had found McCain jumping to a strong lead there after struggling through the summer. Republicans will also be satisfied to see that Obama is struggling in yet another poll from Washington - confirming that the Northwestern state is far less safe than people thought a few weeks ago.

Meanwhile, in down-ballot:

  • Betsy Markey leads Rep. Marilyn Musgrave 47% to 38% in a Grove Insight poll for Emily’s List of CO-04.
  • Andy Harris and Frank Kratovil are tied at 36% in a DCCC poll of MD-01.
  • Mark Begich leads Ted Stevens 50% to 44% in a Research 2000 poll of Alaska’s Senate race.
  • Susan Collins leads 55% to 42% in a Rasmussen poll of Maine’s Senate race.
  • Mitch Daniels leads Long Thompson 56% to 40% in a Rasmussen poll of Indiana’s gubernatorial race.
  • Daniels leads Long Thompson 46% to 42% in a Selzer poll of that same race.
  • Dino Rossi inches ahead 48% to 47% against Gregoire in a Strategic Vision poll of Washington’s gubernatorial race.
  • Lautenberg leads 49% to 42% in a Rasmussen poll of New Jersey’s Senate race.
  • Chambliss leads 52% to 33% in an internal poll conducted for his campaign in Georgia’s Senate race.
  • Inhofe leads 55% to 39% in a Rasmussen poll of Oklahoma’s Senate race.

The House races bring some excellent news for Democrats. Musgrave and Young are among the most vulnerable Republican incumbents, and those are not isolated polls. The CO-04 survey, for instance, confirms what SUSA found a few weeks ago. Democrats have been trying to kick Musgrave out for a few cycles, and it looks like this could be their year. As for MD-01, it has a very high percentage of undecideds, and in a heavily conservative district they are more likely to vote Republican. But it remains remarkable that Democrats are competitive in a district the GOP should be safe in.

As for the Senate races, Democrats will be satisfied that Begich is holding on to a lead, though the race is undoutedly much tighter than they would like it to be. There isn’t much else for the DSCC to get excited about here. Tom Allen, Bruce Lunsford, Jim Inhofe and Jim Martin are making little to no inroads in their respective Senate races, making it increasingly unlikely that Democrats will be able to contest more than the 9 races they have already put in play.


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Poll roundup: 4th tracking poll, 15 state surveys show highly competitive electoral college

A few months ago, both candidates were talking about radically transforming the electoral map. Georgia, Mississippi, New Jersey and Connecticut were going to be put in play, rendering any comparisons to the 2004 numbers meaningless. But two months from Election Day, polling results are fairly in line with the red/blue state divide. Of the 11 states polled yesterday, Obama leads in every one won by Kerry and McCain leads in every one won by Bush ‘04.

The situation is not as dramatic today - Obama led by 5% in Ohio this morning’s Quinnipiac poll - but the GOP’s convention bounce looks to have helped McCain a great deal in red states that Democrats were eying, perhaps too optimistically. After Montana and North Dakota over the past two days, it is Georgia that now looks completely out of reach. But one exception is North Carolina: SUSA found McCain gaining two days ago, but since then four polls have found contrasting results. Today alone, one has found Obama gaining and one has found McCain opening a big lead.

In states that are more obvious battlegrounds, there hasn’t been much movement - suggesting most of McCain’s bounce is coming from red states. But polls from the most crucial swing states are starting to look all over the place - and that’s the surest sign that the race is a toss-up that either candidate could win. Democrats should not panic, nor should they dismiss this tightening. McCain has not taken a lead in the electoral college, but he now looks to be definitely in the race, to an extent few would have predicted a few months ago:

  • First, the trackings: In Rasmussen, the race is back to a tie (Obama led by 1% yesterday); in Gallup, McCain loses one point but stays ahead 48% to 44%; in Diego Hotline, McCain seizes a lead, 46% to 44%.
  • And there is now a fourth tracking poll. Conducted by Research 2000, it finds Obama ahead 47% to 45% with 2% each for Nader and Barr. The poll is sponsored by Daily Kos, but that does not mean it is biased: R2000 is an independent pollster. Just scroll down to the results it found in Kos-sponsored polls of ME-Sen and NC-Pres today: they are very favorable to the GOP.
  • McCain leads 48% to 46% in another national poll, conducted by Democracy Corps. That’s a 7% bounce for the Arizona Senator.
  • McCain leads 50% to 42% in an Insider Advantage poll from Florida (polling history). Obama is weak among registered Democrats. One relief for him: He can expect higher support among blacks than this poll finds.
  • McCain leads 48% to 47% in an Insider Advantage poll of Ohio, but Obama only has 48% of the black vote. I am not one to throw a poll out because of a problem with one internal, but given that African-Americans make up about 10% of the electorate and that Obama should get at the very least 80% of that vote, this survey has an obvious problem. McCain leads by 17% among independents.
  • McCain leads 45% to 44% in an Insider Advantage poll of Michigan. McCain leads by 18% among independents.
  • McCain leads 47% to 44% in a Civitas poll from North Carolina (polling history). Without leaners, McCain is only ahead by 1%. McCain was ahead by 6% in the August survey. 19% of the sample is black, about where it was in 2004 - that’s the number that could put Obama over the top if he can boost it to 22-23%.
  • McCain leads 55% to 38% in a Research 2000 poll of North Carolina. He led by 4% in late July.
  • Obama leads 47% to 46% in a PPP poll from Colorado (polling history). He led by 4% in August and his lead survives thanks to a large advantage among Hispanics.
  • Obama leads 49% to 46% in an Insider Advantage poll from Colorado.
  • McCain leads 56% to 38% in an Insider Advantage poll from Georgia. That’s his largest lead ever from this state.
  • McCain leads 52% to 39% in another poll from Georgia, released by Strategic Vision.
  • McCain leads 55% to 35% in a Capital Survey Research Center poll from Alabama.
  • McCain leads 52% to 39% in a Research 2000 poll from Mississippi. Obama gets 14% of the black vote.
  • Obama leads 52% to 38% in a Research 2000 poll from Maine. There is no breakdown by district.
  • McCain leads 58% to 39% in a Rasmussen poll from Wyoming. Bush won by 20% more, and what coattails McCain has could be important in the House race.

To recap the most important findings: Q-pac’s Ohio survey finding Obama gaining is contradicted by two afternoon polls (though one of which finds Obama at a ridiculously low 48% of the black vote, and he would have been in the lead otherwise). Insider Advantage released the first poll from Michigan that shows McCain leading by any margin for months now, but Rasmussen shows Obama gaining and leading outside of the margin of error - just like CNN found yesterday. And Obama leads in two Colorado surveys, though the margins are tight.

As a group, this round of poll looks slightly better for McCain, who is putting Georgia away, surviving in Florida, essentially tying in Colorado and even taking the lead in one Michigan survey. But this also underscores that Obama has many more combinations to reach 269. If he saves Michigan and Pennsylvania (and he looks better in those than McCain does in a number of red states), McCain will be forced to play defense and save a large number of vulnerable red states.

Meanwhile, in down-the-ballot races:

  • In Mississippi’s Senate race, Research 2000 finds Senator Wicker leading Ronnie Musgrove 48% to 43%. That’s a 4% improvement for Wicker since July. 18% of blacks are undecided, versus only 4% of whites, so there is more of a reserve for Musgrove - but if that is because these respondents are not sure who the Democrat is, they will not be helped by the ballot since it will not list any partisan identification.
  • In the North Carolina Senate race, Research 2000 finds the race tightening since late July but Dole remaining on top, 48% to 42%.
  • In the gubernatorial race, Research 2000 finds Pat McCrory leading Beverly Perdue 47% to 42%. That’s a similar result as SUSA’s poll.
  • In Maine’s Senate race, Tom Allen is making no inroads whatsoever according to Research 2000. He trails 57% to 36% against Senator Collins.
  • In the Idaho Senate race, Jim Risch has a large lead in Rasmussen’s first poll of the race, 58% to 30%. The poll does not include conservative independent candidate Rammell about whom the GOP is reportedly worried.
  • A poll of MN-02 conducted for the Alliance for a Better Minnesota finds GOP Rep. Kline leading challenger Steve Starvi 37% to 33%. But take the poll with a grain of salt, as it also finds Obama leading McCain by 11% in a district McCain carried by 9%. (The poll was taken at the end of August.)

No surprises in Maine’s and Idaho’s Senate race, though it would be more interesting to see whether Rammell is gaining any traction in the latter. The MS race is of course the most interesting, and Democrats definitely still look to be in striking range. But it is undeniable that Wicker is in a better position than he was a few months ago. More analysis about this race in this post I wrote yesterday and in my upcoming Senate rankings.

As for North Carolina, there is a very interesting divide between pollsters at the moment. On the one side, there is Research 2000 and SUSA, on the other PPP and Bev. Perdue’s pollster (both Democratic firms) and Civitas (a Republican firm). They are finding diverging results in all three statewide races.


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Friday polls: Stevens, Young lead primaries but trail in general; Collins expands lead

Yesterday, McCain inched ahead in Colorado for only the second time ever and posted big gains in Minnesota for the second straight survey (and it’s not like polls taken earlier this week). Today, Democrats can celebrate the latest numbers from the Alaska congressional races but Republicans have reason to be happy at some sign of minor movement in NC’s presidential race and bigger momentum for Maine’s Susan Collins:

  • Rasmussen’s latest poll from North Carolina (polling history) finds McCain slightly expanding his lead. He leads 46% to 42%, 50% to 44% with leaners (compared to 3% last month). As always, the true source of worry for Obama is his unfavorability rating - 48%, compared to 40% for McCain.
  • In Maine, Obama leads 49% to 36%, 53% to 39% with leaners. Rasmussen does not provide a breakdown by district, but 13% should guarantee that Obama wins both districts (and all electoral votes). Obama’s favorability rating is strong here, 61% compared to 53% for McCain.
  • In the Economist’s national poll, a 3% race is now a 1% race, with Obama ahead 41% to 40% - well within the margin of error.
  • And while I don’t report on tracking polls most days, do note that a 6% lead for Obama two days ago is now back to a tie, confirming that the race is hovering around an average of 3% and has been stuck there for weeks.

The movement in the Rasmussen poll is within the margin of error, making it difficult to draw any big conclusions but - as I have said often - it is important to remember that Barack Obama has been on air for two months now while McCain has not been at all, but that does not appear to be helping the Democrat. ButnNot only is he not gaining in the head-to-head with McCain (confirming that the mid-40s are a ceiling Obama will have trouble breaking) but his favorability ratings is not improving. In fact, it has gone down by a point in the past month while McCain’s has gained - this despite the fact that North Carolina voters have been treated to Obama’s advertising campaign. And keep in mind that unless Obama gets NC poll to find a race consistently within the margin of error, it is unlikely McCain will feel forced to invest in the state.

The upside for Obama is that the electorate is becoming more polarized as the election is getting closer but that his numbers are not falling, so he is at least succeeding in maintaining the positive impression many voters have of him - and that was certainly not a given.

On to the down-the-ballot polls:

  • In the Alaska Senate race, Ivan Moore Research shows Ted Stevens holding firm in the primary, leading with 63% against 20% for Cuddy and 7% for Vic Vickers.
  • In the general election, however, Stevens trails 56% to 39% (a 4% improvement for him, but still a wide margin).
  • In AK-AL, that same Ivan Moore poll shows Don Young surviving the primary 46% to 40% with 7% for LeDoux. That’s a 2% improvement for Parnell over the past 3 weeks.
  • In the general election, Ethan Berkowitz leads Young 51% to 41% but narrowly trails against Parnell, 46% to 42%.
  • In Maine’s Senate race, Senator Susan Collins expands her lead against Tom Allen in Rasmussen’s poll. After being ahead 49% to 42% in two straight months, she leads 53% to 38% - 55% to 40% with leaners. Collins has a great favorability rating: 65% versus 29% unfavorable.
  • In the North Carolina gubernatorial race, Rasmussen finds Beverly Perdue opening a lead, 49% to 43% (51% to 45% with leaners). She led by 1% in June.
  • In NC-08, an internal poll for the Hayes campaign finds the Republican incumbent leading 50% to 40% against Larry Kissell, a Democrat who lost by a few hundred votes in 2006. In this district that Bush won by 9% in 2004, McCain leads 47% to 42% - progress for Obama, but not enough.

I wrote a post centered on the Alaska primaries last night, so I will not repeat my analysis then as this poll confirms what we already know: Young is in a heated primary whose result could very well determine whether Democrats pick up the seat in November, though Berkowitz should be reassured to see that he would still have a shot against Parnell. As for the Senate race, it is fascinating that Stevens remains miles ahead of his GOP competitors despite some heavy spending.

Parnell has ruled out running for the Senate seat, but if Republicans can convince Stevens to step down and if Parnell loses the House primary (two huge ifs, of course), switching Stevens for Parnell could make the most sense! But even a Begich-Parnell race would be a toss-up at best for Republicans: if the Lieutenant Governor is managing only a 4% lead over Berkowitz, he will start at an even worse position against the Anchorage Mayor.

As for Maine’s Senate race, the Rasmussen polls from June and July were the only ones to find Susan Collins’s lead under 50%. Other polls of the race have found her at a stronger position, and now the only ray of hope for Maine Democrats is gone - with even Rasmussen showing Collins with a solid lead and above 50%. Note that both candidates have started their ad campaigns recently - with Allen launching a 1 minute biographical spot and Collins shorter ads. The DSCC has reserved $5 million worth of ad time in the fall, but how close does Allen have to be for the DSCC to follow through?


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Congressional ad watch: Smith and Landrieu attack opponents, candidates introduce themselves

To an unusual degree, posts today have focused on new TV spots - from Obama, Franken and McCain - so let’s continue in that vein with this must-see response to McCain by Paris Hilton (yes, it’s real). “He’s the oldest celebrity in the world… but is he ready to lead?” asks the spot in an obvious parody of McCain’s “celeb” ad. Hilton goes on to call McCain the “very old” “wrinkly white-haired dude” and she proposes her unexpectedly articulate energy policy!

Meanwhile, and more seriously: In Oregon, the past few ads released by Gordon Smith have touted the Senator’s bipartisan credentials to appeal to independents, though Smith also released attack ads in July accusing Merkley of wanting to raise taxes. The DSCC replied with an ad hitting Smith over energy issues after an earlier ad tied the incumbent to President Bush. Now, Smith is out with a negative ad that accuses Merkley of wasting taxpayer money redecorating the offices in the legislature, even attaching price tags to different furniture items:

Merkley has little money to go on air (this is one race in which cash-on-hand disparity matters) and Smith is taking the opportunity to define the still-unknown Democrat as a tax-and-spend liberal. In July, he released ads arguing that Merkley likes taxes… and here is the complementary charge that he likes to spend. This ad looks like a caricature, and that’s because the “tax-and-spend liberal” figure has become such a staple of GOP ads. They seem (and are) silly, but viewers are used enough to the tax-and-spend attack that the overarching narrative becomes part of the political conversation. How well they succeed will depend on whether Merkley has the resources to respond before Smith succeeds in defining him. The DSCC is committed to the race, but can only do so much work.

In Louisiana, meanwhile, both candidates released ads this week. On the one side, Republican John Kennedy, trying to run as a reformer. His new and somewhat humorous ad (you can watch it here) says he will get Congress to spend less because… he is personally cheap. The ad shows him saving pennies and bringing his brown bag lunch to the office: “One leader is so tight, he squeaks,” says the ad, which also reviews Kennedy’s record. Senator Mary Landrieu has another idea on how to introduce Kennedy to voters: attack him for his flip-flops, party switch and for being a… liberal! Landrieu notes that Kennedy ran for AG as a Democrat, endorsed Kerry in 2004 and that Republicans called him a liberal during his Senate campaign:

Landrieu’s goal to (1) undermine any honest reformer approach Kennedy might try to portray and (2) take away any enthusiasm conservatives might have for Kennedy. Landrieu is the only truly endangered incumbent Democrat this year, and her main obstacle is the red-lean of the state she represents. If she convinces voters that her opponent isn’t a Republican, however, it might offset the unfavorable terrain she must fight on.

In other Senate advertising, two incumbents are airing positive ads. In Maine, Susan Collins ad on energy (you can watch it here) confirms that all ads on this topic could be aired by just about everyone, from either party, and that most candidates endorse the same lofty goals. This is what makes the energy issue appealing to so many candidates: it allows them to look centrist and pragmatist - two adjectives Collins needs as a Republican incumbent in a Democratic state.

Then, there is South Dakota: A year ago, we weren’t even sure if Tim Johnson would run for re-election. Now, he is facing minor opposition in what is looking like an easy re-election race. But Johnson’s ads are still interesting because they feature a candidate still struggling with health issues. In fact, Johnson’s opening ad - released last week (you can watch it here) - was entirely devoted to his health, with the Senator admitting that he was still working on his speech. Yesterday, he unveiled the second part of his advertising campaign (you can watch it here) by highlighting his accomplishments since he “came back to the Senate.” The ad claims Johnson has not missed a single vote.

Moving on, we have two ads with a very similar message by two Democrats running in red areas. In Idaho, Larry LaRocco’s ad (you can watch it here) reviews the problems the country is facing - jobs, inflation - and calls for “change.” In NC-08, repeat candidate Larry Kissell airs his first ad (view it here) against Rep. Hayes. “We cannot afford two more years of this,” argues the Democrat, speaking directly to the camera and citing rising oil prices and lost jobs. He calls for “a new voice.” The distrust in the GOP is the main reason Democrats have a chance in states and districts like these, making these calls for generic “change” the logical type of ad they should run.

In WA-08, finally, Darcy Burner is one of the best-funded House challengers: she raised more in the second quarter and she has more cash-on-hand than her opponent, GOP incumbent Rep. Reichert. That allowed her to release a 60-second biographical ad (watch it here) highlighting, among other things, her life story, her brother serving in Iraq, her preparing a plan to get the US out of Iraq and her work on the Chinese toy issue. The 2006 race took some nasty terms, and Burner was attacked by her opponent for her inexperience. That she can afford a 60-second ad (with a much larger scope) is a good way for her to reintroduce herself to voters and start inoculating herself against those same attacks by highlighting substantive policy work she has done.



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    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55
  • All good things must come to an end

  • Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55
  • What remains on the table

  • Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55
  • Confusion in Connecticut (Updated)

  • Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55
  • Results thread, part 2: Dems suffer staggering losses in House and legislatives races, limit damage in statewide races

  • Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55
  • Election Night results thread: Rep. Boucher’s fall first surprise of the night

  • Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55
  • Election night cheat sheet

  • Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55
  • Final ratings: Democrats brace for historic losses

  • Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55
  • What to watch for down-ballot

Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

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