The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Mike-Lee ResizedHe may be a Tea Party favorite, but Utah senator Mike Lee is losing support among voters in his own state.

A new poll conducted by Brigham Young University’s Center For the Study of Elections and Democracy finds that only 40 percent of Utah voters have a favorable impression of Senator Lee, down from 50 percent in June — 51 percent of voters view Lee unfavorably.

Lee’s declining approval is likely due to his role in the crusade against the Affordable Care Act that resulted in the ongoing government shutdown. Lee’s callous response to questions about his own paycheck — last week he told KUTV, “I’m working. I’ll continue to be paid” during the shutdown — certainly hasn’t helped. (He later clarified that he was misquoted and intends on donating a portion of his salary to charity.)

Trying to justify his role in the shutdown, Lee released a statement on Thursday in which he claimed he does not care about how voters perceive him, because his only concern is the “percentage of Utahns who are feeling the negative effects of Obamacare through lost jobs, wages, hours, and health care.”

Chances are he will start caring once 2016 approaches, and he realizes he has lost significant support from Republicans and Independents in Utah.

Although 90 percent of those who identify themselves as “active in the Tea Party” say Lee “should stand by his principles, even when the result is a government shutdown,” Lee’s favorability among Republicans overall dropped from 71 percent in June to 57 percent today.

Among Democrats, 99 percent believe that Lee “should be more willing to compromise, even if that means passing a budget with funding for the Affordable Care Act.” A large number of Independents – 65 percent – agree. Overall, 57 percent of voters want the senator to compromise.

The declining support for Lee could be a problem if he seeks re-election 2016.

Quin Monson, director of the Center for the Study of Elections and Democracy, said “it’d be very difficult to predict the outcome of a Republican primary if he [Mike Lee] was faced with a capable and visible moderate-to-conservative Republican.”

He added that Democratic representative Jim Matheson — who is considered a likely opponent for Lee in 2016 — is “someone who should really make Senator Lee nervous.”

According to the poll, Matheson has a favorable-unfavorable ratio of 58 percent to 36 percent among Utah voters. More surprisingly, among Republican voters, his favorable-unfavorable ratio is 52 percent to 40 percent, demonstrating the Democrat’s bipartisan appeal.

Besides Matheson, Senator Lee might also have to worry about running against former Utah Republican Party chairman Thomas Wright, who is considering a Senate bid.

Lee, who has shown no inclination to compromise during his time in Washington, looks like he’ll have his hands full if he runs for re-election. As Kirk Jowers, the head of the University of Utah’s Hinckley Institute of Politics, noted, “Utahns expect effectiveness and efficiency and results out of their government, not ideological tantrums.”

The poll surveyed 938 voters between October 2 and October 7. It has a margin of error of +/- 3.2 percent.

Photo: Gage Skidmore via Flickr

Advertising

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

Roger Stone Has Strong Connections To Insurrestionists

Image via Wikemedia Commons

Last week's indictment of Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes for seditionist conspiracy revealed more than simply the mountain of evidence that the Justice Department has acquired in the prosecutions of key players in the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection. It also made clear the DOJ’s larger strategy of moving up the food chain of players in the historic attack—with Donald Trump and his inner circle now only steps away.

Much of the attention has focused on former Trump adviser Roger Stone, whose connections to the “Patriot” movement—and particularly to the Oath Keepers and Proud Boys who spearheaded the siege of the Capitol—are well established; indeed, earlier on Jan. 6, two Oath Keepers now charged alongside Rhodes with sedition in the conspiracy were part of Stone’s personal security detail. But as Marcy Wheeler incisively reports, more recent court documents also make clear that the investigation into militia groups’ activities that day now encompasses Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani.

Keep reading... Show less

Biden Ramps Up Delivery Of Free Covid-19 Tests

Photo by Budiey/ CC BY-NC 2.0

The Biden administration is taking several steps to address the latest wave of COVID-19, including the creation of a response team designed to head off possible future variants of the coronavirus.

Experts say the month of February will likely be "tough" in terms of omicron, though there are signs that the wave may be peaking as reported infections and hospitalizations slow. Health officials are simultaneously concerned about future variants developing and groups like the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control continue to monitor the ever-changing situation.

Keep reading... Show less
x
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}