Unlikely Voter

Poll Analysis and Election Projection

Archive for March, 2012

Quinnipiac University put out a pair of polls this week I thought were interesting to note. Now, I have and still do think that it’s too soon to test general election Presidential matchups, so don’t think I’m reading a lot into these. But apart from that, I find it odd that Mitt Romney is doing better in Pennsylvania than he is in Ohio.

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Forgive me for venturing out from strict horserace poll analysis, but given the the administration’s recent moves on coal power, I couldn’t help but wonder how that might affect the President in swing states, should prices rise in coal-burning states.

A check I made this morning suggests that the answer is yes, if coal is an issue in this election, it could swing close states.

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Since we last looked at the delegate situation, Rick Santorum has won two state primaries, and Mitt Romney picked up a state caucus, a territorial primary, and a territorial caucus.

Santorum showing the ability to win state primaries is good news for him, but he must now convert that ability into delegates, or this race may be effectively over anyway.

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I’m happiest when all the polls in a race match up. It means we have a very good idea of how a race is going for the candidates in it.

So, naturally, I’m not happy about the Massachusetts Senate race right now. Seeing a 10 point swing from poll to poll, giving both candidates opposing 5 point leads, means we have to dig deeper to figure out what’s going on.

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I’m glad that we’re now starting to have a better idea of the shape of the Senate race, as we settle down on who the candidates are going to be, and how they’re polling against incumbents (or each other, in the case of open seats). Soon I will update my Senate projections with actual data.

In the meantime, we’ve got the first Missouri Senate poll in two months. Sarah Steelman polls an absolute majority over incumbent Claire McCaskill.

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I’m a proponent of applying mathematical principles to poll analysis because our intuition is often wrong. The human mind deals poorly with randomness.

However I don’t feel I need any math to conclude that Connie Mack IV runs better against Bill Nelson than do other Republicans in the Florida Senate race.

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Senate polling comes and goes lately, and primary polling is even harder to get. Pollsters seem to get more attention when they make these premature Presidential general election matchups.

But we got some Maine Senate polling from PPP just in time to get wind of some possible machinations in that race. Could Democrats be clearing the way for independent Angus King?

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Some opponents of Mitt Romney as Republican nominee have long insisted that once it’s a two-man race for the nomination, Romney will lose.

Saturday’s results suggest otherwise. Even on a good night for Rick Santorum, he only treaded water.

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Medal of Honor recipient, former Senator, and former Governor Bob Kerrey has announced he will run for Senate in Nebraska to replace Ben Nelson, the man who replaced him in the Senate. Common sense suggests a multiple-time statewide winner with a distinguished personal history would be a favorite to win the open seat.

New polling however suggests Kerrey is a large underdog to Republican Jon Bruning.

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While everyone focused on Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum in Ohio, a major Senate matchup was finalized in the state. Treasurer Josh Mandel was chosen as the Republican challenger to Senator Sherrod Brown.

Brown took advantage of a crippled Ohio GOP and a second midterm wave to knock off a two term incumbent. But can he keep this battleground state seat?

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