This same poll has Romney ahead in SC, at 29% (Rudy at 23). Once again that's out of line with out of polls but big news if true -- if he wins all the early states, how does anyone beat him? I mean, till Hillary does.
It must be the result of having seen so many low budget indie films, my tolerance for bad but earnest acting is obviously higher than most. I thought they were both good. He is clearly saying: Here's the things you, Republican voter, may not like about Bush: Iraq, runaway deficits, reckless disregard for personal privacy. He doesn't have to convince anyone to believe those things, he just has to INFORM them that IF they do, he's their guy. If he gets the votes of all the NH Republicans who disagree with Bush on those things -- and where else ARE they going to go? -- he's in good shape.
Huckabee still has to knock out Thompson in the south. I know Thompson seems like a complete joke to anyone who has -- well, seen him speak for more than two seconds. But you could almost interpret his campaign strategy as one designed to keep Huckabee from winning. He is focusing his money and his (very limited) energies on a few Southern states where his name recognition and his absence of campaign appearances (ie no one will see just how bad he is) will get him a good chunk of the vote. Huckabee is also stubbornly running on issues like health care that are designed to split the grassroots conservatives between the anti-government die-hards and the ones who want some government help in hard times. And just to throw in my favourite quote on Huckabee from Ramesh Ponnuru, from the National Review: "He seems to combine some of Pat Buchanan's bad ideas with some of George W. Bush's. He's the protectionist compassionate conservative. No thanks."
I just chose five points arbitrarily. The point is, however big you think the spread is destined to be, whichever direction you think the polls will move in, whatever the value the polls have at this point, the puzzle is a statistical one. If Giuliani is getting x percent in a national poll, yet losing decisively in all the states where Republican presidential candidates who receive roughly that same level of support in national polls are normally competitive -- where are Giuliani's voters? When polls showed Bush neck in neck with Kerry, or Gore, they also showed him competitive in states like Wisconsin, and way ahead in states like Virginia and Kansas. Giuliani is neck in neck with Hillary without that being true.
For me the puzzle remains why the national polls stay so close. I don't have any data to back this, but one hypothesis might be that the combination of Bush's polarisation strategy and the GOP's weakness among independents has created a problem of efficient vote distribution for the GOP. If so, it would explain the GOP candidates' (at least Guiliani and McCain) continuing strength in national polls despite their weakness in battleground states. On this hypothesis, there are a large number of core red states (like Idaho) that will stay WAY red, especially if Hillary is the nominee, keeping the national polls close, though all the battleground states will tip to the Democrats. As I think about it, though, the GOP would have to pile up a lot of votes in red states to make up for those kind of huge deficits in blue and purple ones. So my puzzlement remains. Just, statistically -- if national polls are showing Republicans within even five points of Hillary, where are those voters?
Maybe this poll doesn't explicitly refute the GOP line, but there have been other polls, though I can't put my finger on one right now, that have shown big gaps between people's overall approval of the Democrats in Congress and the Republicans, with the former being much higher. Also, I believe the polls clearly show the big drop in Congressional approval has come from anti-war Democrats. It's obvious why, and those are not the people who will swing Republican. They will also possibly be open to a message that says "The larger our majority, the more we can do."
I agree Dobson and co wouldn't support him, the point is just there is a lot of potential support there for him to bleed away, especially if the fundies don't come up with a candidate on their own. This is from Politicalinsider.com: "He [Paul] has done it before, as the Libertarian nominee in 1988, and has refused to say he will endorse the GOP ticket without reservation. Paul considered a second presidential run in 1992 and has toyed with it since, and he faces a tough bid for renomination in his Texas U.S. House district. He may be willing to cap his political career with another insurgent bid."
This poll also says 34% of Republicans think social conservatives should run a third-party cadidate if the nominee supports abortion and gay rights. With that kind of potential support, if Rudy wins the nomination, SOME winger nutcase is going to find the temptation too great to resist. Any ambitious conservative low down the winger hierarchy who wants to be famous could declare and immediately start polling like 10% of the vote, and soak up months of wall-to-wall free media.(Okay, unless it's Alan Keyes, in which case he'll be ignored.) I am beginning to think that if Rudy is the nominee, whatever Dobson and his little cabal decide, SOMEONE will run. And if Ron Paul runs -- easiest thing in the world for him to do considering the Libertarian line is his for the asking -- well, there will be panic in the streets of Washington.
MUCH closer unfortunately. Chafee was 5 points ahead of Whitehouse in June 2005 and 13 points in Sept. That was before Whitehouse even had the nomination, and Chafee was still fighting off his primary challenger.
One argument you hear a lot is that most conservative Republicans will just suck it up and vote Rudy rather than stay home and let Hillary win. The problem is, Rudy doesn't need most Republican voters, he needs ALL of them. If even 5% of Bush voters stay home, Hillary wins easily. And of course it is not just a matter of sucking it up and voting. These are the people who actually do the grunt work for the GOP at election time. Who is manning Rudy's phone banks and doing his pamphlet drops? I still think Thompson is the best nominee for us just because he wouldn't even bother to show up at half the debates against Hillary and would probably take next August off, but Rudy scares me less and less.
I agree with this and add one word: ClubforGrowth.net. (Yes they call themselves that now.) They have it in for him big time, for five tax raises. They are as big a problem for him as the Christian right is for Giuliani, bigger because Huckabee is in a weaker position overall. Also it isn't just money he can't raise. He can't get endorsements to save his life. If he is such a perfect movement candidate, why are Dobson and co out talking about a third party spoiler? He has NOT reached out to the people who are his natural constituency. If Dobson was going to support him, why not now?
Is there any evidence/examples that support the claim that there are a lot of "women only" female voters? Do female Republicans tend to defeat male Democrats in swing states or anywhere else? Where are all those "women only" voters in the poll showing Richardson and Udall crushing Wilson?
I don't know what you guys are talking about, this is a GREAT map. Just imagine if Giuliani actually ran a campaign on this basis. He would spread his money across all these "swing" states, and would actually spend time campaigning in CA and NY.
This was a great post, very heartening. However I think the big obstacle may be their perceptions about presidential viability. There is nothing to destroy the glow that surrounds a popular governor or former governor like a few tough Senate votes, especially since there will be legislation the Democrats will push for that may not be popular in southern states (think Oklahoma and the environment). Mark Warner seems to have calculated that in this day and age governors need the national/international experience the Senate gives them, so hopefully that will be seen as an adequate counter-balance.