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Friday, October 28, 2016

Here are some interesting stories on the midterm campaigns that you may have missed on Tuesday, October 28:

• Two new polls suggest that Democrat Martha Coakley is collapsing in Massachusetts’ gubernatorial race. According to a UMass Lowell/7News poll, Republican Charlie Baker now leads Coakley, 45 to 41 percent. Meanwhile, WBUR finds Baker leading 43 to 42 percent. Both of those results are within the margins of error, but by Coakley’s own admission the race is a “dead heat.” Baker now leads the Real Clear Politics poll average by 3 percent; that represents a net 10-point swing over the past five weeks.

• A new Ivan Moore Research poll of Alaska’s Senate race shows Democratic incumbent Mark Begich leading Republican challenger Dan Sullivan, 48 to 42 percent. That’s the second local poll this week to show Begich in the lead, although Sullivan still leads the poll average by 2.2 percent. The disparate results, and the general unreliability of Alaska polls, has even polling experts scratching their heads about what to expect on Election Day.

• Scott Brown has pulled even with Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) in New Hampshire’s contentious Senate race, according to a New England College poll released Tuesday. The poll finds Brown leading 48 to 47 percent, within the poll’s margin of error. Shaheen still leads the poll average by 2.2 percent. There is some reason for skepticism about New England College’s results; the same poll finds Democratic governor Maggie Hassan tied with Republican challenger Walt Havenstein, even though no other public poll has found the Republican within 4 points.

• Does Rep. Tom Cotton (R-AR) still want to throw journalists in jail? He’s not saying. Cotton leads Senator Mark Pryor (D-AR) by 5 percent in the poll average.

• And down by double digits in the polls, Virginia Senate candidate Ed Gillespie (R) released his campaign’s closing argument on Tuesday: A spirited defense of owner Dan Snyder’s right to use a racial slur as his Washington football team’s name. Ironically, Snyder has donated $5,200 to incumbent Democrat Mark Warner’s re-election campaign.

Photo: Office of Governor Deval Patrick via Flickr

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  • Dominick Vila

    Things don’t look promising for Democrats this time, not because of our record, which is outstanding compared with what we inherited in January 2009, but because of our inability to capitalize on our successes, a lousy campaign strategy, and outstanding Republican electioneering tactics which, while despicable at times, have proven to be very effective in convincing mainstream Americans to vote against their own interests.
    As for polls, let’s not forget what happened two years ago, when Republicans were busy booking ballrooms to celebrate Romney’s landslide victory based on what polls were saying. In the end, with the exception of Nate Silver’s, the rest were all wrong. Unfortunately, this time around, even Nate is predicting GOP victories, including a 63% chance of Republicans taking control of the Senate.
    What is going to be interesting, regardless of who controls the Senate after this midterm election, is how both parties are going to react and the political strategies they will embrace to win the big enchilada in 2016. It will not be long before President Obama becomes irrelevant, and the big guns aim at Hillary Clinton. What remains to be seen is whether or not the GOP can convince Jeb Bush to run. The fact that he has campaigned in Florida, in support of Gov. Rick Scott, suggests that he is considering running.

    • dtgraham

      I don’t know if I’d read too much into it Dominick. Almost every President’s party takes a midterm hit in his 6th year. To boot, this year there are so many vulnerable Dems in red states, but the situation is supposed to be reversed in two years. As likely as many say it is that the GOP will take the Senate, it’s even more likely that it will flip back to the Democrats in 2016. That’s what I read and hear anyway. These two years seem more of a cyclical thing.

  • dtgraham

    Is Martha Coakely the worst political candidate of all time or something? We’ve all heard of the horrible campaign she ran against Scott Brown in 2010. How else could a Democrat lose Ted Kennedy’s seat in Massachusetts? I hear that she very recently declined to debate Baker on TV and was about to give him a couple of hours to talk alone, just himself and the moderators. She claimed the debate wouldn’t work with her schedule. After being heavily criticized, she suddenly found the time to debate. I’ve a feeling the Democratic party read the riot act to her. I’m surprised they gave her a second chance to run. She won’t get a third.

    I don’t know anything about her stances on the issues except that she’s a Democrat. I might agree with her on everything for all I know, but her political and campaigning skills…yikes.