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BLOG ARCHIVE: AUGUST 1-31, 2008.

LABOR DAY NEWS UPDATE.

HURRICANE CURTAILS GOP CONVO OPENING; BOTH CAMPAIGNS OFFER ASSISTANCE TO STORM VICTIMS.

REPUBLICAN CONVENTION. As killer Hurricane Gustav approached the Louisiana coast -- with an expected landfall Monday -- GOP leaders announced a curtailing of Monday's opening day schedule in Minneapolis-St. Paul. President Bush and Vice President Cheney both canceled planned convention speeches and will instead focus on storm response activities. Other canceled speakers include First Lady Laura Bush and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. The RNC will instead hold a brief "business only" session. The Tuesday schedule may also be impacted, but there will be no decision until some time on Monday. Also, the McCain campaign chartered a jet to fly 30+ Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana delegates home to the Gulf region on Sunday to check on family and property, and will give them the option of returning on the jet to Minnesota with additional family members. Republicans understand that they cannot be seen to be overly partisan in the face of a national catastrophe -- but also are concerned that curtailing too many convention activities may minimize any "convention bounce" for McCain. In related news, the Barack Obama campaign announced plans to use their massive email list of supporters to solicit money and volunteers for disaster relief activities in the aftermath of the storm.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.31.08 | Permalink |

SATURDAY NEWS UPDATE.

McCAIN PICKS PALIN FOR VEEP, CONSERVATIVES PRAISE MOVE; NEW PREZ POLLS.

McCAIN-PALIN. John McCain used his 72nd birthday on Friday to name Alaska Governor Sarah Palin -- a 44-year-old mother of five -- as his Vice Presidential runningmate. It was a bold political gamble to select Palin as his runningmate. Conservative Republicans quickly praised the choice, saying Palin is an energetic campaigner and political reformer. Religious right leader James Dobson said the selection made it easy for him to now support McCain. Conservatives note Palin is staunchly pro-life, pro-gun rights, pro-tax cuts and pro-oil drilling. The Anchorage Daily News also reported Palin "thinks creationism should be taught alongside evolution in the state's public classrooms." Conservative pundit Pat Buchanan also noted on MSNBC that Palin openly supported his 2000 cultural conservative Presidential run for the GOP nomination: "She's a great choice for the base ... She's a Buchananite." Democrats, by contrast, questioned the wisdom of selecting someone so inexperienced to be just a heartbeat away from the Presidency. They note Palin was formerly mayor of a town of 9,000 residents and is now just 20 months into her first term as Governor. McCain clearly intends the move to help him pick-up support from independent women voters. Untested on the national stage, it is simply too early to tell if Palin will prove on the trail to be a brilliant political pick or another Dan Quayle.

P2008 - DAILY POLLING UPDATE. Here is our daily update of the latest independent state polls on the Presidential race:
COLORADO (CNN/Time): McCain - 47%, Obama - 46%.
FLORIDA (Mason-Dixon): Obama - 45%, McCain - 44%.
NEVADA (CNN/Time): Obama - 49%, McCain - 44%.
NEW MEXICO (CNN/Time): Obama - 53%, McCain - 40%.
PENNSYLVANIA (CNN/Time): Obama - 48%, McCain - 43%
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Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.30.08 | Permalink |

FRIDAY NEWS UPDATE.

OBAMA'S BIG SPEECH; McCAIN TO NAME VEEP FRIDAY; 1/23 MARINES REDUX; AND SOME NEW POLLS.

DEMOCRATIC CONVENTION. Barack Obama gave his biggest campaign speech to date before a outdoor crowd of 80,000 in Denver, just one day after he officially became the Democratic Presidential nominee. In trademark Obama style, he delivered another impressive, landmark address. At turns inspiring, at others feisty, he talked of his America and defined his vision for a better America than we've had for these past eight years. Like his speech the night of his Iowa victory in January, Obama gave another speech that will be remembered as great American political oratory. FYI: Don't know if any of you caught it but wounded Iraq War veteran Jon Kuniholm -- one of the 1/23 Marines that Politics1 "adopted" in 2004 during our Politics1 Goes to War series -- spoke at the convention early Thursday evening. This was the sad report when Jon was injured in an attack and lost his arm. Our series was intended as a reminder that those Americans who strongly oppose the Iraq War can still honor and appreciate the sacrifices of those brave young Americans serving in uniform in Iraq and Afghanistan.

McCAIN. John McCain will announce his VP runningmate choice at an Ohio rally on Friday. According to various news sources, the short-list finalists are reported to include Mitt Romney, Tom Ridge, Tim Pawlenty, Joe Lieberman and Kay Bailey Hutchison. Stay tuned.

P2008 - DAILY POLLING UPDATE. Here is our daily update of the latest independent state polls on the Presidential race:
CALIFORNIA (PPIC): Obama - 48%, McCain - 39%, Others - 3%.
IDAHO (Greg Smith and Assoc.-R): McCain - 52%, Obama - 29%.

US SENATE. Here are the latest independent polls for US Senate races.
IDAHO (Greg Smith and Assoc.-R): Lt. Governor Jim Risch (R) - 41%, ex-Congressman Larry LaRocco (D) - 29%, rancher Rex Rammell (I) - 3%.

CONGRESS. Here are the latest independent polls for US House races.
COLORADO CD-4 (SurveyUSA): Ex-congressional aide Betsy Markey (D) - 50%, Congresswoman Marilyn Musgrave (R) - 43%.
FLORIDA CD-21 (SurveyUSA): Ex-Hialeah Mayor Raul Martinez (D) - 48%, Congressman Lincoln Diaz-Balart (R) - 46%
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Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.29.08 | Permalink |

THURSDAY NEWS UPDATE.

BILL CLINTON EMBRACES OBAMA, JOE'S VP DEBUT; YOUNG HOLDING ON IN ALASKA; LOTS OF SENATE, GOV & HOUSE POLLS.

DEMOCRATIC CONVENTION. Barack Obama officially became the Democratic Presidential nominee, with Senator Hillary Clinton interrupting the delegate roll call to personally move Obama's nomination be made unanimous by acclimation. Former President Bill Clinton enthusiastically jumped onto the Obama bandwagon on Wednesday, giving a rousing pro-Obama speech at the convention. Senator Joe Biden also gave a VP acceptance speech which praised John McCain's record of service but blistered his political stances. Biden clearly relishes taking up the traditional runningmate role of being the ticket's attack dog.

P2008 - DAILY POLLING UPDATE. Here is our daily update of the latest independent state polls on the Presidential race:
COLORADO (CNN/Time/Opinion Research): McCain - 47%, Obama - 46%, Others - 1%.
FLORIDA (Mason-Dixon): Obama - 45%, McCain - 44%.
FLORIDA (Strategic Vision-R): McCain - 49%, Obama - 42%, Barr - 1%.
NEVADA (CNN/Time/Opinion Research): Obama - 49%, McCain - 44%, Others - 1%.
NEW MEXICO (CNN/Time/Opinion Research): Obama - 54%, McCain - 40%.
OHIO (Univ. of Akron): Obama - 40%, McCain - 40%.
PENNSYLVANIA (CNN/Time/Opinion Research): Obama - 48%, McCain - 43%, Others - 1%.
RHODE ISLAND (Brown Univ.): Obama - 53%, McCain - 30%.

ALASKA. With 99.8% of the vote counted, embattled 18-term Congressman Don Young (R) moved into a 152 vote lead over Lieutenant Governor Sean Parnell in the GOP primary. State election officials say several thousand requested absentee ballots have not yet been returned and any ballots postmarked by primary day will be counted so long as they are received within ten days of Tuesday's primary. Thus, we won't know until late next week whether Young or Parnell is the Republican nominee. The winner will face former State House Minority Leader Ethan Berkowitz (D) in November.

US SENATE. Here are the latest independent polls for US Senate races.
NEW HAMPSHIRE (ARG): Former Governor Jeanne Shaheen (D) - 52%, US Senator John Sununu (R) - 41%.
NORTH CAROLINA (PPP-D): State Senator Kay Hagan (D) - 42%, US Senator Elizabeth Dole (R) - 39%, postal worker Chris Cole (Libt) - 5%.

CONGRESS. Here are the latest independent polls for US House races.
KANSAS CD-2 (SurveyUSA): Congresswoman Nancy Boyda (D) - 50%, State Treasurer Lynn Jenkins (R) - 43%, Others - 5%.
MICHIGAN CD-7 (EPIC/MRA): Congressman Tim Walberg (R) - 43%, State Senate Minority Leader Mark Schauer (D) - 40%.
MICHIGAN CD-9 (EPIC/MRA): Congressman Joe Knollenberg (R) - 43%, ex-State Senator Gary Peters (D) - 36%.
PENNSYLVANIA CD-10 (SurveyUSA): Congressman Chris Carney (D) - 49%, businessman Chris Hackett (R) - 45%.

GOVERNOR. The new independent polls for the gubernatorial contests:
NORTH CAROLINA (PPP-D): Lt. Governor Bev Perdue (D) - 43%, Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory (R) - 38%, college professor Michael Munger (Libt) - 4%.
NORTH CAROLINA (Civitas-R): Lt. Governor Bev Perdue (D) - 43%, Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory (R) - 41%, college professor Michael Munger (Libt) - 3%.
UTAH (Mason-Dixon): Governor Jon Huntsman (R) - 73%, businessman Bob Springmeyer (D) - 9%.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.28.08 | Permalink |

WEDNESDAY NEWS UPDATE.

STEVENS WINS IN ALASKA, YOUNG RACE TOO-CLOSE-TO-CALL; GOP VEEPSTAKES; HILLARY PRAISES OBAMA.

Very brief posting today, as I didn't have time to write much on Tuesday night. I was at the victory party for my boss -- and she won re-election with 82%!!

ALASKA. As exepcted, indicted US Senator Ted Stevens (R) easily won renomination Tuesday in the seven-man GOP primary with 63% of the vote. His nearest opponent, former State Representative Dave Cuddy, captured 27%. Stevens -- who goes on trial in Octorber on federal corruption charges -- faces Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich (D) in November. The results of the hot GOP congressional primary remained undecided in the early morning hours. With 89% of the vote counted, embattled 18-term Congressman Don Young (R) was trailing Lieutenant Governor Sean Parnell by just 142 votes. State Representative Gabrielle LeDoux was a distant third with just 9%. The official vote count is being posted here. Young is the target of an ongoing federal corruption probe. Former State House Minority Leader Ethan Berkowitz won the Democratic primary for the congressional seat.

McCAIN. According to various media reports, John McCain is now planning to announce his VP pick on Friday, just one day after the close of the Democratic convention.

DEMOCRATIC CONVENTION. Tuesday night saw Senator Hillary Clinton's big speech. Clinton said she was a "proud supporter of Barack Obama" and added that "Barack Obama is my candidate. And he must be our President."
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.27.08 | Permalink |

TUESDAY NEWS UPDATE.

ALASKA, FLORIDA PRIMARY PREVIEW; DEM CONVO UPDATE; SEVEN NEW POLLS.

There may -- or may not -- be an update on Tuesday evening. I'll be celebrating at the primary victory party for my boss, so I may not post anything. Or maybe I will.

ALASKA. The hottest political story of Tuesday comes form the coldest state in the nation. US Senator Ted Stevens (R) -- recently indicted on federal corruption charges -- is facing an aggressive primary challenge from former State Representative Dave Cuddy and wealthy businessman Vic Vickers. Polls, however, show Stevens holding a landslide lead over his GOP foes. With Stevens likely to win Tuesday's primary, he will remain a slim underdog against Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich (D) in November. The big upset on Tuesday may come in the at-large US House race. Congressman Don Young (R) -- also the target of a federal corruption probe -- appears much more endangered on Tuesday. Polls show the powerful 18-term incumbent locked in a virtual tie with Lieutenant Governor Sean Parnell for the Republican nomination, with State Representative Gabrielle LeDoux trailing far behind. Popular Governor Sarah Palin and the Club for Growth are backing Parnell, but Young has been running a very feisty and combative campaign in these final days. Former State House Minority Leader Ethan Berkowitz will easily win the Democratic congressional primary. If Young wins the primary, Berkowitz will be a slight favorite in the general election. If Parnell defeats Young, he will be favored to win in November.

FLORIDA. There are eleven congressional contests on Tuesday's ballot, with two races of particular note. In CD-15, four Republicans are competing to replace retiring Congressman Dave Weldon (R). State Senator Bill Posey is solidly backed by Weldon and the GOP establishment, and should win handily. In CD-16, the NRCC has made freshman Congressman Tim Mahoney (D) one of the party's top 3 national targets. Mahoney won in the fluke election after Congressman Mark Foley (R) was forced to withdraw late in the race after being implicated in a sex scandal. Three Republicans are battling it out for the seat, with wealthy attorney Tom Rooney and State Representative Gayle Harrell viewed as the frontrunners. Either one will make this race a toss-up contest in November.

DEMOCRATIC CONVENTION. Monday night saw what may be ailing Senator Ted Kennedy's final convention speech to the party, plus Michelle Obama' big address.

P2008 - DAILY POLLING UPDATE. Here is our daily update of the latest independent state polls on the Presidential race:
COLORADO (Suffolk Univ.): Obama - 44%, McCain - 39%.
MICHIGAN (Detroit News): Obama - 43%, McCain - 41%.
OHIO (Columbus Dispatch): McCain - 42%, Obama - 41%.
TEXAS (Rasmussen): McCain - 50%, Obama - 41%.

US SENATE. Here are the latest independent polls for US Senate races.
COLORADO (Suffolk Univ.): Congressman Mark Udall (D) - 39%, former Congressman Bob Schaffer (R) - 31%.
MICHIGAN (Detroit News): US Senator Carl Levin (D) - 59%, State Rep. Jack Hoogendyk (R) - 27%.
TEXAS (Rasmussen): US Senator John Cornyn (R) - 48%, State Rep. Rick Noriega (D) - 37%.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.26.08 | Permalink |

MONDAY NEWS UPDATE.

OBAMA TAPS BIDEN; DEM CONVO OPENS IN DENVER; AND 26 NEW POLLS.

VEEPSTAKES. Barack Obama on Saturday selected former rival Joe Biden as his Vice Presidential runningmate. Democratic leaders from across the party widely praised the pick. On the GOP side, most also praised Biden -- but used the selection to criticize Obama's by contrasting the two men's experience. Now the veepstakes speculation shift to John McCain, who is expected to announce his choice this coming Friday or Saturday. Biden, FYI, is also a candidate for re-election this year. Delaware law allows him to run simultaneously for US Senate and Vice President.

DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION. The Democratic convention opens on Monday in Denver. Despite the decision to place Hillary Clinton's name in nomination and allow a Presidential roll call vote, look for the convo to largely be -- at the surface level -- a well-orchestrated love-fest. The key events to watch are the roll call vote and the speeches of Obama, Biden and Hillary Clinton. The GOP convo next week will also likely be equally free of major news.

P2008 - DAILY POLLING UPDATE. Here is our daily update of the latest independent state polls on the Presidential race:
ARIZONA (Mason-Dixon): McCain - 47%, Obama - 41%.
CALIFORNIA (Rasmussen): Obama - 51%, McCain - 37%.
COLORADO (Quinnipiac): McCain - 47%, Obama - 46%.
COLORADO (Mason-Dixon): Obama - 46%, McCain - 43%.
INDIANA (Rasmussen): McCain - 46%, Obama - 42%.
KANSAS (SurveyUSA): McCain - 58%, Obama - 35%.
MICHIGAN (Detroit Free Press): Obama - 46%, McCain - 39%.
MISSISSIPPI (Rasmussen): McCain - 54%, Obama - 41%.
NEVADA (Mason-Dixon): McCain - 46%, Obama - 39%.
NEW MEXICO (Mason-Dixon): McCain - 45%, Obama - 41%.
NEW MEXICO (Rasmussen): Obama - 48%, McCain - 44%.
TENNESSEE (Rasmussen): McCain - 56%, Obama - 32%.
UTAH (Mason-Dixon): McCain - 62%, Obama - 23%.
VIRGINIA (PPP-D): Obama - 47%, McCain - 45%.
WYOMING (Mason-Dixon): McCain - 62%, Obama - 25%.

US SENATE. Here are the latest independent polls for US Senate races.
KANSAS (SurveyUSA): US Senator Pat Roberts (R) - 58%, former Congressman Jim Slattery (D) - 31%,Others - 7%.
LOUISIANA (Rasmussen): US Senator Mary Landrieu (D) - 53%, State Treasurer John Kennedy (R) - 37%.
MINNESOTA (Univ. of Minnesota): Humorist Al Franken (D) - 41%, US Senator Norm Coleman (R) - 40%, former US Senator Dean Barkley (I) - 8%.
MISSISSIPPI (Rasmussen): US Senator Roger Wicker (R) - 47%, former Governor Ronnie Musgrove (D) - 42%.
NEW MEXICO (Rasmussen): Congressman Tom Udall (D) - 51%, Congressman Steve Pearce (R) - 41%, Others - 2%.
NORTH CAROLINA (Civitas-R): US Senator Elizabeth Dole (R) - 44%, State Senator Kay Hagan (D) - 41%, postal worker Chris Cole (Libt) - 4%.
VIRGINIA (PPP-D): former Governor Mark Warner (D) - 55%, former Governor Jim Gilmore (R) - 32%.

CONGRESS. Here are the latest independent polls for US Senate races.
KANSAS CD-1 (SurveyUSA): Congressman Jerry Moran (R) - 77%, attorney James Bordonaro (D) - 13%, Others - 4%.
KANSAS CD-4 (SurveyUSA): Congressman Todd Tiahrt (R) - 61%, State Senator Donald Betts (D) - 30%, Others - 5%.
NEW YORK CD-13 - DEM PRIMARY (SurveyUSA): NYC City Councilor Michael McMahon - 64%, attorney Steve Harrison - 18%.

GOVERNOR. The new independent polls for the gubernatorial contests:
INDIANA (SurveyUSAl): Governor Mitch Daniels (R) - 52%, former Congresswoman Jill Long Thompson (D) - 38%, Others - 6%.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.25.08 | Permalink |

AN OLYMPIC GAMES HIATUS.

SATURDAY FREE SPEECH ZONE. Barack Obama kept everyone waiting on Friday -- but still no VP pick. Joe Biden and Chet Edwards are both among those names still believed to be in play. Most now believe Biden will be the VP candidate. NBC reports Evan Bayh and Tim Kaine were among those who received calls from Obama informing them they will not be the runningmate.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.23.08 | Permalink |

FRIDAY FREE SPEECH ZONE. Barack Obama made a VP announcement on Thursday: "I know something you don't know" (well, maybe I'm slightly misquoting him, but this is basically what he said) ... John McCain and Obama exchanged jabs over their respective homes. One (albeit big) for Obama, and seven (or maybe eight) for McCain. McCain wasn't quite sure how many he has ... McCain also told Politico he is absolutely "not considering" making a single-term pledge.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.22.08 | Permalink |

THURSDAY FREE SPEECH ZONE. Congresswoman Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D-OH) died unexpectedly Wednesday at age 58, less than a day after suffering a brain aneurysm while driving to a meeting. Party leaders will select a replacement nominee -- likely next month -- to fill her safely Democratic CD-11 seat ... Also, we updated our Wyoming and Washington pages to reflect the primary winners from Tuesday ... And nothing new on the VP front from either camp.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.21.08 | Permalink |

WEDNESDAY FREE SPEECH ZONE. Some rain, some wind, some waves ... Fay was rather slow and boring (which was okay, compared with the 2005 hurricanes) ... and nothing new on the VP front besides lots of conflicting rumors. Also, here's something new: click here to view our Ballot Access Chart to see which Presidential candidates are on the ballot in your state (note: keep in mind filing is still open in some states).
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.20.08 | Permalink |

MONDAY FREE SPEECH ZONE. While Hurricane Fay is expected to sweep up and strike the gulf coast side of the Florida, those of us here on the Atlantic coast are expected to experience tropical storm conditions on Monday night/Tuesday daytime. Just some heavy winds (under 40 mph) and lots of rain for us, so no big deal really.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.18.08 | Permalink |

FRIDAY FREE SPEECH ZONE. Another day, another open thread.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.15.08 | Permalink |

THURSDAY FREE SPEECH ZONE. Arkansas Democratic Chair Bill Gwatney was shot and killed on Wednesday after a gunman burst into state party headquarters. The shooter was later killed by police following a high-speed chase ... John McCain launched a trial balloon in an interview with the Weekly Standard when he said he would now possibly be open to selecting a pro-choice VP runningmate like Tom Ridge, but said he couldn't go so far as to consider Mike Bloomberg because the NYC Mayor is just too staunchly pro-gay rights.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.14.08 | Permalink |

WEDNESDAY FREE SPEECH ZONE. Yup, your turn again.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.13.08 | Permalink |

TUESDAY FREE SPEECH ZONE. Tuesday is congressional primary day in Colorado and Nevada ... Russia's military invasion drives deeper into Georgia ... Bush returns to the White House ... and the Olympic games continue.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.11.08 | Permalink |

MONDAY FREE SPEECH ZONE. It's all about you.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.10.08 | Permalink |

WEEKEND FREE SPEECH ZONE. Have at it.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.09.08 | Permalink |

FREE SPEECH ZONE. With the Olympics starting on Friday, it means most political news will take a back seat for a little while. The Obama family is going off on vacation, and I'd guess that John and Cindy McCain will also sneak off for a little down time. Unless some major political news breaks, I'm just going to post daily open threads until the end of the games.

TENNESSEE. Thursday's primary in the Volunteer State saw another congressional incumbent defeated. In CD-1, former Johnson City Mayor Phil Roe defeated freshman Congressman David Davis in the GOP primary by vote of 50.2% to 49.2% -- and a slim margin of exactly 500 votes. A third candidate captured 0.6% and 325 votes. It was a rematch from the 2006 primary, when Davis edged Roe after several others from Roe's part of the district split his base. A third rematch in 2010 already seems likely. As for November, the seat is so reliably Republican that no Democrat has won it in over 130 years. In CD-7, Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn (R) defeated Shelby County Register Tom Leatherwood by a 2-to-1 margin. In CD-9, freshman Congressman Steve Cohen (D) won a surprisingly easy victory over attorney Nikki Tinker. Cohen, who is white, was expected to face a highly competitive Dem primary challenge his largely African-American district. Tinker was one of several black challengers two years ago who split the black vote, which enabled Cohen to win in the 2006 primary by a very slim plurality. On Thursday, by contrast, Cohen defeated Tinker by a 79% to 19% vote. In the US Senate race, former State Democratic Chair Bob Tuke defeated six rivals in his primary and will next face incumbent Lamar Alexander (R) in November.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.08.08 | Permalink |

THURSDAY NEWS UPDATE.

VEEP PICKS DEFERRED; NEW PREZ, US SEN, CONGRESS, GOV POLLS.

VEEPSTAKES. Barack Obama's visit to Indiana -- accompanied by Evan Bayh -- came and went with no VP announcement. Lots of mutual praise, but no Veep pick. In fact, it's starting to look like Obama plans to go off on his Hawaii family vacation and seemingly defer making any public pick until after the Olympics end. Ditto for McCain likely to defer any VP decision until after the games end.

P2008 - DAILY POLLING UPDATE. Here is our daily update of the latest independent state polls on the Presidential race:
FLORIDA (PPP-D): McCain - 47%, Obama - 44%.
NEW JERSEY (Rasmussen): Obama - 52%, McCain - 42%.
NEW YORK (Rasmussen): Obama - 52%, McCain - 32%.
WASHINGTON (Elway Poll): Obama - 47%, McCain - 35%.

US SENATE. Here are the latest independent polls for US Senate races.
NEW JERSEY (Rasmussen): US Senator Frank Lautenberg (D) - 51%, former Congressman Dick Zimmer (R) - 33%.

CONGRESS. Here are the latest independent polls for US Senate races.
OHIO CD-15 (SurveyUSA): Franklin County Commissioner Mary Jo Kilroy (D) - 47%, State Senator Steve Stivers (R) - 44%, pro-life activist Don Eckhart (I) - 7%.

GOVERNOR. The new independent polls for the gubernatorial contests:
WASHINGTON (Elway Poll): Governor Christine Gregoire (D) - 52%, former State Senator Dino Rossi (R) - 36%.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.07.08 | Permalink |

WEDNESDAY NEWS UPDATE.

JENKINS, HULSHOF & KILPATRICK WIN NARROW PRIMARY VICTORIES; MARTIN WINS BIG IN GA.

KANSAS. The hottest Kansas race of the day was the GOP primary in CD-2. State Treasurer Lynn Jenkins narrowly defeated social conservative former Congressman Jim Ryun by a vote of 51% to 49%. Jenkins is a a GOP centrist, while Ryun is a leader of the Religious Right wing of the Kansas Republican Party. Jenkins is expected to be a highly competitive challenger in the general election against vulnerable freshman Congressman Nancy Boyda (D). Jenkins' first test will be to forge party unity after a bruising primary in a state well known for lasting rifts between the two rival GOP ideological factions. Also, as expected, former Congressman Jim Slattery (D) scored a landslide win in his US Senate primary on Tuesday. Slattery will face US Senator Pat Roberts (R) in November.

MICHIGAN. Congresswoman Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick narrowly won her renomination fight in CD-13. Kilpatrick won 39%, followed by former State Representative Mary Waters at 36%, and State Senator Martha Scott third with 25%. Kilpatrick enjoyed a lopsided advantage in primary campaign cash: $500,000 for the incumbent versus roughly $10,000 apiece spent by each of the two challengers. Waters said on Monday she may continue her campaign into the general election as either a write-in or under a third party banner. Waters refused to concede the race Tuesday night.

MISSOURI. Congressman Kenny Hulshof defeated State Treasurer Sarah Steelman in the costly gubernatorial primary by a vote of 49% to 45%. Hulshof will face Attorney General Jay Nixon (D) in November. In the open CD-9 contest to fill Hulshof's House seat, former State Tourism Director Blaine Luetkemeyer won the GOP nomination by a 9-point lead over the nearest of his four opponents. On the Dem side, State Representative Judy Baker likewise won by a 9-point margin over the nearest of her three primary competitors.

GEORGIA. Former State Representative Jim Martin (D) cruised on Tuesday to an easy US Senate run-off victory over DeKalb County CEO Vernon Jones. Martin had placed second in the primary, but the party seemed to rally behind Martin over the past few weeks as Independent polls show he was significantly stronger than Jones against US Senator Saxby Chambliss (R) for the general election. Martin defeated Jones by a 60% to 40% vote.

US SENATE. Just one independent poll today for the US Senate races:
OREGON (SurveyUSA): US Senator Gordon Smith (R) - 49%, State House Speaker Jeff Merkley (D) - 37%, salesman Dave Brownlow (Constitution) - 8%.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.06.08 | Permalink |

TUESDAY NEWS UPDATE.

ANOTHER CONGRESSIONAL INCUMBENT COULD FALL ON PRIMARY DAY IN KANSAS, MICHIGAN, MISSOURI; RUN-OFF DAY IN GEORGIA; AND SIX NEW PREZ POLLS.

KANSAS. Former Congressman Jim Slattery (D) will win an easy victory in Tuesday's US Senate primary. Slattery will face US Senator Pat Roberts (R) in November. Senate race rating: GOP Favored. The hot race to watch in the state on Tuesday is the GOP primary in CD-2. State Treasurer Lynn Jenkins and former Congressman Jim Ryun are locked in a very tough contest symbolic of the ongoing split within the Kansas Republican Party. Jenkins is from the moderate wing of the party, while Ryun is closely aligned with the hardcore Religious Right faction. Traditionally the candidates from the conservative wing of the party win low turnout primary contests, so we'd give Ryun a slight edge. Either one will provide a highly competitive challenge in the general election against freshman Congressman Nancy Boyda (D). Boyda is possibly the most endangered House Democrat in the nation. Race rating: No Clear Favorite.

MICHIGAN. There are five congressional primaries on Tuesday, but the only race worth watching is the hot CD-13 Democratic primary. Congresswoman Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick -- the mother and staunchest defender of indicted Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick -- is facing the fight of her political life. State Senator Martha Scott and former State Representative Mary Waters are both aggressive challengers to the incumbent, although recent polling shows Waters being the stronger of the two. Kilpatrick is counting on the two challengers splitting the opposition vote, allowing her to narrowly win another term. However, Kilpatrick is clearly vulnerable and appears likely to lose Tuesday if Waters can gain a solid advantage over Scott. The winner of the primary -- any of the three -- will win in November in this solidly Dem district.

MISSOURI. Two Republicans -- Congressman Kenny Hulshof and State Treasurer Sarah Steelman -- are waging a costly gubernatorial primary to replace unpopular retiring Governor Matt Blunt (R). Polls in the final days show Hulhof holding an advantage. The winner will face Attorney General Jay Nixon (D) in November. Race rating: Leans DEM. The two CD-9 primaries for Hulshof's open seat are also hotly contested, with five Republicans and four Democrats running. On the GOP side, former State Tourism Director Blaine Luetkemeyer and State Representative Bob Onder are the frontrunners, although former pro football player Brock Olivo also continues to generate some attention. On the Dem side, State Representative Judy Baker appears to be a slight favorite over former State House Speaker Steve Gaw, former State Senator Ken Jacob and Marion County Commissioner Lyndon Bode. The three men are all to the right of Baker, which is likely help her by splitting the more centrist and Blue Dog vote. Baker has also outraised her primary foes in campaign cash. Race rating: GOP Favored.

GEORGIA. Tuesday is also primary run-off day in the Peach State. While DeKalb County CEO Vernon Jones placed first in last month's Democratic primary for US Senate, he is likely to lose today. The primary opponents eliminated last month have rallied behind former State Representative Jim Martin -- the '06 Lieutenant Governor nominee -- and Martin appears likely to defeat Jones. Independent polls also show Martin significantly stronger against US Senator Saxby Chambliss (R) in the general election, although the incumbent will still be favored over Martin.

P2008 - DAILY POLLING UPDATE. Here is our daily update of the latest independent state polls on the Presidential race:
ALABAMA (Rasmussen): McCain - 58%, Obama - 38%.
ARIZONA (Rasmussen): McCain - 57%, Obama - 38%.
ARIZONA (PPP-D): McCain - 52%, Obama - 40%.
CONNECTICUT (Rasmussen): Obama - 53%, McCain - 40%.
FLORIDA (SurveyUSA): McCain - 50%, Obama - 44%, Others - 3%.
MASSACHUSETTS (Suffolk Univ.): Obama - 47%, McCain - 38%.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.05.08 | Permalink |

MONDAY NEWS UPDATE.

BAYH, CANTOR RISE IN VEEPSTAKES; SIX PREZ POLLS; MORE ALASKA NUMBERS ON STEVENS; SENATORS DOLE, CORNYN LEAD; NIXON LEADS FOR MO GOV; MO CD-6 RACE TIGHTENS.

VEEPSTAKES. The new buzz this weekend -- and, let's face it, even the so-called experts are all guessing here -- is that Obama plans to announce Evan Bayh as his runningmate on Tuesday. Why? Because the Obama press corps was informed over the weekend they will be in Indiana on Tuesday and Wednesday, yet there are no campaign events in the state on Obama's published schedule. On the GOP side, the media's spotlight of speculation was shining on US House Chief Deputy Minority Whip Eric Cantor. Cantor reportedly is being seriously vetted. Why?x He's young, conservative, Jewish, and from the swing state of Virginia. Stay tuned.

P2008 - DAILY POLLING UPDATE. Here is our daily update of the latest independent state polls on the Presidential race:
ALASKA (Rasmussen): McCain - 44%, Obama - 39%.
ARIZONA (Rocky Mountain Poll): McCain - 43%, Obama - 38%, Nader - 3%.
FLORIDA (Florida Chamber of Commerce): McCain - 45%, Obama - 40%.
KENTUCKY (Research 2000): McCain - 56%, Obama - 35%.
MISSOURI (SurveyUSA): McCain - 49%, Obama - 44%.
NORTH CAROLINA (Research 2000): McCain - 47%, Obama - 43%.

US SENATE. ALASKA - Lieutenant Governor Sean Parnell (R) told Roll Call he does not intend to switch into the US Senate race if indicted incumbent Ted Stevens (R) withdraws after the primary, nor does he expect Governor Sarah Palin (R) to become the replacement nominee if it comes open (note: Parnell doesn't expect Stevens to quit). Meanwhile ... here are the latest independent polls for US Senate races:
ALASKA (Roll Call/Ivan Moore Research): Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich (D) - 56%, US Senator Ted Stevens (R) - 35%.
ALASKA - GOP Primary (Roll Call/Ivan Moore Research): US Senator Ted Stevens - 59%, former State Representative Dave Cuddy - 19%, Others - 2%.
NORTH CAROLINA (Research 2000): US Senator Elizabeth Dole (R) - 50%, State Senator Kay Hagen (D) - 42%.
TEXAS (Rasmussen): US Senator John Cornyn (R) - 47%, State Representative Rick Noriega (D) - 37%.

GOVERNOR. The new independent polls for the gubernatorial contests:
MISSOURI (SurveyUSA): Attorney General Jay Nixon (D) - 48%, Congressman Kenny Hulshof (R) - 42%.
MISSOURI (SurveyUSA): Attorney General Jay Nixon (D) - 50%, State Treasurer Sarah Steelman (R) - 41%.
MISSOURI - GOP Primary (SurveyUSA): Congressman Kenny Hulshof - 45%, State Treasurer Sarah Steelman - 35%, Others - 9%.

CONGRESS. The new independent polls for the US House contests:
INDIANA CD-9 (SurveyUSA): Congressman Baron Hill (D) - 49%, former Congressman Mike Sodrel (R) - 42%, economist Eric Schansberg (Libt) - 4%.
MISSOURI CD-6 (SurveyUSA): Congressman Sam Graves (R) - 48%, former Kansas City Mayor Kay Barnes (D) - 44%.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.04.08 | Permalink |

FRIDAY NEWS UPDATE.

OBAMA AHEAD IN FL, OH, PA; McCAIN LEADING IN ID, KY, TX; SEN STEVENS TRAILS BY 13; McCONNELL WIDENS LEAD; MICHIGAN CONGRESSWOMAN ENDANGERED IN PRIMARY.

P2008 - DAILY POLLING UPDATE. Here is our daily update of the latest independent polls from swing states (and states that appear to be evolving into swing states):
FLORIDA (Quinnipiac Univ.): Obama - 46%, McCain - 44%.
IDAHO (Research 2000): McCain - 53%, Obama - 37%.
KENTUCKY (Rasmussen): McCain - 52%, Obama - 43%.
MONTANA (Rasmussen): McCain - 47%, Obama - 47%.
OHIO (Quinnipiac Univ.): Obama - 46%, McCain - 44%.
PENNSYLVANIA (Quinnipiac Univ.): Obama - 49%, McCain - 42%.
TEXAS (Rasmussen): McCain - 52%, Obama - 44%.

US SENATE. Here are the latest independent polls for US Senate races.
ALASKA (Rasmussen): Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich (D) - 50%, US Senator Ted Stevens (R) - 37%.
IDAHO (Research 2000): Lt. Governor Jim Risch (R) - 42%, former Congressman Larry LaRocco (D) - 32%, rancher Rex Rammell (I) - 5%.
KENTUCKY (Rasmussen): US Senator Mitch McConnell (R) - 50%, businessman Bruce Lunsford (D) - 38%.

GOVERNOR. The new independent polls for the gubernatorial contests.
MONTANA (Rasmussen): Governor Brian Schweitzer (D) - 56%, State Senator Roy Brown (R) - 32%.

CONGRESS. DCCC Chair Chris Van Hollen told Roll Call there are 75 House seats seriously "in play" this year -- and 50 of those seats are currently held by Republicans. The new independent polls for the US House contests.
MICHIGAN CD-13 - DEM PRIM (EPIC-MRA/Detroit News): Congresswoman Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick- 33%, former State Representative Mary Waters - 29%, State Senator Martha Scott - 24%.
WASHINGTON CD-2 (SurveyUSA): Congressman Rick Larsen (D) - 58%, former Snohomish County Sheriff Rick Bart (R) - 37%.
WASHINGTON CD-8 (SurveyUSA): Congressman Dave Reichert (R) - 50%, former Microsoft executive Darcy Burner (D) - 44%.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 08.01.08 | Permalink |

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