The latest on the presidential horse race.

Tag Archives: Thom Tillis

2014 Senate Polls Update: Michigan, North Carolina, Alaska, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky

Arkansas: USA Today

  • Pryor (D): 45
  • Cotton (R): 43

Georgia: SurveyUSA

  • Perdue (R): 46
  • Nunn (D): 45

Kentucky: Reuters

  • McConnell (R): 46
  • Grimes (D): 42

Michigan: Rasmussen

  • Peters (D): 41
  • Land (R): 39

Alaska: PPP

  • Sullivan (R): 45
  • Begich (D): 42

North Carolina: PPP

  • Hagan (D): 46
  • Tillis (R): 42

This is the peak of the campaign season and voters all over the nation are increasingly tortured by copious amounts of campaign ads on television, radio, and front lawns. There’s been quite a bit of movement in the polls lately, so clearly these are having some effect. Let’s take a look at the latest numbers from some of the most competitive races in the Senate.

In Georgia, where Republican David Perdue had led Democratic nominee Michelle Nunn by as many as 9-10 points, a new Survey USA poll has Perdue up by just 1 percent. In August, Survey USA had him up by 9 and in early September he was up by just 3 so this could be a trend. A recent WSB-TV/Landmark poll even had Nunn up by a few points. This one is not over by a longshot.

In Kentucky, Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes has now finished within 4-5 percent of Republican incumbent Senator and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell in six of the last seven polls. The Democrats are looking to spend a ton of money to try to unseat McConnell so Grimes is definitely still in the race.

In Michigan, where Democrat Gary Peters had been leading Republican Terri Lynn Land by as much a 9-10 percent, Peters has now led Land by just 2-3 percent in three of the last four polls. Looks like Land is building some momentum heading into October.

In Alaska, we can officially say Mark Begich is in trouble. Not only has he trailed Republican challenger Dan Sullivan in every poll since July, Nate Silver points out that Alaska tends to overpoll Democrats in Alaska by an average of 7-8 percent. That means that while Begich is down 3-6 percent, he may actually be down as much as 10 or more.

In North Carolina, where Republican Thom Tillis has led a handful of polls in July and early August, incumbent Democrat Kay Hagan has now led seven straight polls and RealClearPolitics reports she leads Tillis by an average of 5 percent.

In Arkansas, where Republican challenger Tom Cotton had led four straight polls, a new USA Today poll has incumbent Democrat Mark Pryor up by 2. Arkansas is hard to judge but considering Cotton has led 10 of the last 12 polls, he looks to have the edge.

All in all, Perdue, McConnell, Cotton, and Sullivan are all Republicans likely to win their races while Hagan and Peters are Democrats likely to win theirs.

2014 Senate Poll Update: Democrats See Leads Shrink in North Carolina, Minnesota, Nationally

Rasmussen, 8/11-8/17
Generic Congressional Ballot

  • Democrats: 39
  • Republicans: 39

PPP, 8/14-8/17
North Carolina Senate

  • Hagan: 43
  • Tillis: 42

Rasmussen, 8/13-8/14
Minnesota Senate

  • Franken: 50
  • McFadden: 42

A slew of new polls show multiple Senate races previously controlled by Democratic candidates shifting into the toss-up column as the elections approach.

The phenomenon can be seen all around the nation as a new Rasmussen poll shows Democrats tied with Republicans in the generic congressional vote after a Fox News poll showed Democrats by as much as 7 percent.

While most polls have shown Democrats leading the generic vote by 2-3 percent, Rasmussen uses larger samples, 3,500 respondents, and samples likely voters rather than registered voters. Rasmussen polls showed the Democrats leading until July, when Republicans took a slim lead.

We can also see that Democrats in individual Senate races are no longer running away with what initially appeared as “sure-re-election.”

In Minnesota, where Senator Al Franken had led Republican Mike McFadden by 11-14 points in June and July, according to a PPP and a CBS News/New York Times poll, Rasmussen reports that Franken now leads McFadden by 8 percent. That’s still a sizeable difference but McFadden has more than two months to continue to inch closer to the incumbent.

In North Carolina, where June and July polls showed Senator Kay Hagan leading Republican challenger Thom Tillis by 3-4 percent, a mix of new polls show very varying results but give us a fair idea of what to expect.

A Civitas poll has Tillis leading by 2, a Rasmussen poll has Tillis leading by 5, and a PPP poll has Hagan leading by 1.

One thing we do know is that the margin between the two candidates has been slim since polling began last year and this is the one race where we really won’t be able to predict a winner for and will greatly depend on voter turnout.

(Image courtesy of Veni)

Hagan Holds a Minor Lead over Tillis for the North Carolina Senate

USA Today / Suffolk, 8/16 – 8/19

North Carolina Senate

  • Kay Hagan (D) – 45%
  • Thom Tillis (R) – 43%
  • Sean Haugh (L) – 5%
  • Undecided – 7%

The North Carolina senate race remains at a deadlock between Democrat Kay Hagan, 45% and Republican Thom Tillis, 43%. Libertarian, Sean Haugh holds 5% of the votes and 7% of voters are undecided. The USA Today / Suffolk University poll surveyed 500 likely voters that were interviewed by landline and cellphone. To date, Hagan has maintained a slight 1.7% lead. It is unlikely that this lead will hold and the senate race will remain close right up until the end of voting.

Historically, North Carolina tends to favor the Republican Party. There was a large presence of Democrats, but the party was split between progressives and conservatives. The conservative factions sided with the Republicans whenever their party deviated too far left.

Hagan achieved nothing while in office. She stuck to the national agenda of the Democratic party and she will not be able to rely on the surge of African-American voters the same way that she did during the Barack Obama election. While Tillis is also an unpopular choice, he may be able to capitalize on the ineffective nature of Hagan’s time in office. If he can secure votes from Sean Haugh and the undecided vote, he may be able to sneak in a win and secure the senate for the Republicans.

Whether Democrats like it or not, Obama still heavily influences voting. 33% of voters still believe that a vote for Congress is a vote for Obama, 30% believe that it is a vote against Obama, and 33% believe that Obama plays no factor in their decision to vote.

“Tillis not only has an opponent with a low job approval, he benefits from President Obama and Obamacare showing negative ratings,” says David Paleologos, director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center in Boston. “But Hagan has a Democratic party-registration advantage, higher name recognition and a Libertarian candidate on the ballot who is siphoning votes away from Tillis.”

Photo credit: AP

More New Polls Show Republicans Take Lead As Senate Races Slip Away From Democrats

In the past week we’ve seen a slew of new poll suggesting big trouble for Democratic candidates in both gubernatorial and Senate races. More new polls released this week show similar results as Democrats who once held strong leads are seeing Republicans overtake them.

In Arkansas, where incumbent Democratic Senator Mark Pryor led almost every single poll all spring, Republican challenger Tom Cotton has now led by 2-4 percent in six straight June/July polls, including a Rasmussen poll, Magellan Strategies poll, Impact Management Group poll, CBS News/New York Times poll, Talk Business poll, and PPP poll.

In North Carolina, where the well-funded Democratic incumbent Kay Hagan led every poll in June and early July, Republican challenger Thom Tillis now leads by 1 percent according to a CBS News/New York Times poll and by 2 percent according to a Civitas poll.

In Kentucky, where Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes has put up a strong fight against Senate Minority Leader and incumbent Senator Mitch McConnell, leading him by three points as recently as June, McConnell appears to be back on top.

After a CBS News/New York Times poll showed McConnell retaking the lead with a 4 percent margin, a new Courier-Journal/Survey USA poll conducted in late July also had McConnell leading by 2 percent.

Last week we noted that the Florida gubernatorial race was starting to slip away from Democrats as incumbent Governor Rick Scott took the lead over former Governor Charlie Crist.

A new Survey USA poll now confirms what the recent CBS News/NYT poll and Rasmussen poll have shown with Scott leading Crist by 2 percent. Crist had led just about every single poll until June.

(Image courtesy of Gage Skidmore)

More Bad News For Democrats as Senate Races Swing Republican

Last week we looked at how President Obama’s sagging approval and favorability ratings are dragging down Democrats in gubernatorial races. The same phenomenon has been the case in the Senate races as a slew of new polls shows Republicans taking the lead in their respective elections.

In Arkansas, where incumbent Democratic Senator Mark Pryor had led by as much as 10 points in the spring, a new CBS News/New York Times poll shows Republican challenger Tom Cotton leading by 4 points. A Rasmussen poll, a Magellan Strategies poll, and an Impact Management Group poll all have Cotton leading by 4 percent as well.

In Kentucky, where recent Survey USA and Magellan Strategies polls had Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes leading by 1-3 points, incumbent Senator and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell leads by 4 percent in the latest CBS/NYT poll and by 2 percent in the latest Survey USA/Courier-Journal poll.

In North Carolina, where incumbent Democratic Senator Kay Hagan led all through June and early July, the new CBS/NYT poll has Republican challenger Thom Tillis pulling ahead by a slim one-point margin.

In Louisiana, where a recent PPP poll had the race tied and a Rasmussen poll had incumbent Democratic Senator Mary Landrieu leading by 3, the new CBS/NYT poll has Republican challenger Bill Cassidy taking a 1 percent lead.

In Iowa, where Democrat Bruce Braley had led just about every single poll to come out of the Hawkeye State, the new CBS/NYT poll has Republican Joni Ernst leading by 1 percent while a new NBC News/Marist poll has the race tied.

In Michigan, where Democrat Gary Peters had led every single poll since April, the new CBS/NYT poll has Republican Terri Lynn Land ahead by 1 percent.

In Georgia, where a recent Landmark Communications poll had Democrat Michelle Nunn up by 4 percent, the new CBS News/NYT poll has Republican David Perdue leading by 6 percent.

There is still time but with most primaries over, the Republicans find themselves in very good position heading toward the November midterms.

(Image courtesy of Gage Skidmore)