Sunday, October 23rd, 2016

A snapshot of the recall election


You may have seen the Democratic poll the other day by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research showing the recall race tightening up. However, as I pointed out the poll is nothing to brag about for Democrats. It still shows Governor Scott Walker with an approval rating of 50%, not a number normally associated with recalling an elected official. And that approval rating is despite the poll being more heavily weighted towards Democrats than other polls.

Brian Schimming and Vicky McKenna discussed the poll on her program on WISN-AM yesterday, and Schimming pointed out that the poll was actually a tracking poll, and that the results somehow skipped Sunday. Talk about bringing in the fiction writers to create new numbers, the Democrats seem to be experts at it lately. This pollster also predicted a win by Jon Corzine over Chris Christie in New Jersey.

The latest St Norbert College poll is out. I am not a big fan of this poll’s accuracy, and I know former Democratic political consultant Bill Christofferson has made fun of this poll in the past as well. However, the media likes to defend it for some reason.

The St Norbert Poll has Walker leading Barrett 50% to 45% among likely voters. The poll also shows Walker with an approval rating of 52%, again not very encouraging numbers for the Democrats. I don’t see any party identifier numbers but they did ask about President Barack Obama and former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney. In the poll, Obama leads Romney 49% to 43%.

Meanwhile, the latest We Ask America poll is out, and they show Walker winning by 12 points, 54% to 42%. They robo-called over 1400 people last night (one night) and claim a margin of error of +/- 2.61%. I’m really curious if they do another poll next week and the race becomes “suddenly” tighter than this poll would indicate.

Then there’s the Reason – Rupe poll. This poll was conducted a week ago, May 14th to the 18th, making contact on cell phones as well as landlines. The poll showed Walker leading Barrett 50% to 42%. By contrast, it showed Obama beating Romney 46% to 36%, so it’s not a poll leaning towards Republicans. On the other hand, it does have Walker’s approval rating at 49% to 44% disapproval. Christian Schneider has more on the poll.

The Real Clear Politics poll average for May has Walker with a 6.4 advantage. Intrade now has Walker with a 92% chance of winning for those of you that play speculative markets.

Mike Allen of Politico is now predicting a terrible defeat for Wisconsin Democrats and their union allies.

“The Left, labor, Democrats, which planned to embarrass him, instead have made him a national figure with a very bright future,” Allen continues. “It was money poured down the drain by Democrats and the Left in a presidential election year.”

On the flip side, the Barrett campaign just released a polling memo showing Walker leading Barrett 50% to 48%, and the poll explains Barrett’s attacks on Walker regarding the John Doe investigation. I don’t see any information regarding the partisan breakdown of the poll or how the questions were asked. Walker’s favorable to unfavorable in this poll is 48% to 46%.

The Democratic pollster had Joe Sestak up by 2% over Pat Toomey in the 2010 Senate race in Pennsylvania a month out from the election when other polls had Toomey ahead. Chris Cillizza reported at the time in the Washington Post the Democrats were sounding much like they do now in the Walker recall:

“The DSCC and Sestak have both been using TV ads to hit Toomey on a trade deal with China that they say cost the United States — and Pennsylvania — jobs.

“Democrats say these attacks are having a major effect on the race as is an awakening of the party’s base in the Keystone State.”

Toomey won by 2%.

I’ve said all along I thought Walker would win. However, Republicans cannot get complacent. Democrats are turning out the vote right now during heavy early voting and may end up having a better turnout effort than Republicans. In addition, there is still the John Doe investigation hanging over Walker’s campaign, and the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s office has not isolated itself from partisan politics during the investigation.

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