Unlikely Voter

Poll Analysis and Election Projection

Barbara Boxer is in the Fight of Her Political Life

On the heels of a Rasmussen poll suggesting Democrats should worry about Senator Barbara Boxer’s re-election chances, comes worse news from Field for the three term incumbent.

The raw numbers: Campbell 44/Boxer 43, Fiorina 44/Boxer 45, DeVore 41/Boxer 45, 3.7% Margin of Error. My model’s win percentages: DeVore 29%, Fiorina 44%, and Campbell 55%.

Boxer had reason to worry when she dropped below 50 against all comers, showing that she’s lost the automatic majority that had previously stood ready to return her to the Senate. But now she even lacks a plurality against Tom Campbell. Carly Fiorina also looks ready to win 4 times out of 9. Even Chuck DeVore is improving, though he lags greatly in making himself known to the voters at all.

From January to March Field has Boxer going underwater in approval, dropping from +9 to -13. The Republicans were mostly steady: Campbell from +4 to +5, Fiorina held at -2, and DeVore went from -3 to -4, though only 22% of those polled had an opinion of him at all.

In a way it’s remarkable how close Chuck DeVore is despite the massive name recognition gap: 89% for Boxer, 41% for Campbell, 42% for Fiorina, and 22% for DeVore puts him far below the rest, yet he polls only a few points behind Boxer. I think the combination of the Rasmussen and Field polls suggests that Boxer will be in jeopardy no matter the result of the Republican primary. Whoever the Republicans nominate will gain in recognition and possibly in nationwide fundraising as well.

That would seem to be the reason that Al Gore, Barack Obama, and the DNC are all coming out to raise money for an 18 year incumbent Senator in a state that hasn’t elected a Republican Senator since 1988, and arguably never an outspoken pro-life Senator in the post-Roe era. This is surprising particularly for Boxer herself, who has won each Senate race with a margin double the previous: +5 in 1992, +10 in 1998, and +20 in 2004.

Senator Boxer has on her hands the fight of her political life.

Comments

One Response to “Barbara Boxer is in the Fight of Her Political Life”

  1. It really says something when a candidate like DeVore with 22% name recognition can poll within 3 points of Boxer (discounting the MOE).

    II also find it interesting that a candidate who has tried to sell herself as a conservative like Fiorina can do so well in CA of all places (even if her conservative credentials are up for debate).

    Keep up the good work, Neil.

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