Monday, February 15, 2010

Thoughts on Bayh

I can't believe I'm saying this but I really think Republicans have a chance to win back the Senate this fall now.

Let's be realistic- there was a Rasmussen view of Indiana that showed Evan Bayh down to Mike Pence and barely up on John Hostettler and a Research 2000 view that showed him safe for reelection. If the latter was the real state of things I don't think Bayh would be dropping out this late in the game. I have to think he knew he had a really tough fight on his hands and he didn't have the stomach for it, just like what happened with his decision not to run for President in 2008.

So I think the GOP will be favored in Indiana however the candidate field shakes out this week, and I think the GOP is favored in Arkansas, Nevada, Colorado, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and North Dakota as well. Win all those and you have a 52-48 Democratic Senate. Beyond that you have Illinois looking like a toss up and then California and New York looking like they definitely have the potential to become highly competitive based on the incumbents' lack of popularity and Washington and Wisconsin as maybe the longest shots for the GOP but possible with an A list candidate.

And really, if it's a 50-50 situation does anyone trust Joe Lieberman not to throw his hat with the Republicans? Three months ago I would have said Republicans have about a 5% chance of taking back the Senate. Now I'd put it more in the one in three chance range, and rising by the week. And who knows when the bad news for Democrats will stop pouring in...

9 comments:

Christian Liberty said...

Further evidence that the Research 2000 polls have been biased in favor of the Democrats. (Daily Kos-Research 2000 polls still try to claim that Obama's approval ratings are 56%?!?)

Bayh's retirement also means that the 8th district and/or 9th district may open up as Hill and/or Ellsworth may run for the open Senate seat. But the deadline for submitting candidates' petitions is Tuesday Feb 16. Bayh's decision has left the party little time for contingency planning. Something in the polls really spooked him.

Ben (The Tiger in Exile) said...

Run for the hills!

Steve said...

R2K hasn't been out of line with other live-interviewer polls (e.g. Gallup), on Presidential approval or on much else: live-interviewer polls this cycle may have a social desirability "bias" (not the same thing as an intentional partisan bias) that unintentionally screens out Tea Party respondents, which is one reason why PPP is about the only pollster that looks trustworthy right now (they're transparent, they use robocalls and they certainly aren't partisan Republicans, quite the reverse).

Bayh would have had a real campaign on his hands, and maybe he didn't feel like conducting one-- remember, this is a second-generation Senator, one who in some ways inherited his seat, rather than somebody who just loves campaigning (he's also someone who can easily find a DC lobbying job if he wants to stay in DC). Still quite a surprise, and a disappointment. I too see Republicans taking back the Senate; if Dems hold on, it's 51-49, with Lieberman and Nelson breaking in favor of the Republicans on anything really interesting, and I'll start to wonder whether the White House would actually prefer to have Republicans seize nominal control-- at least that would put a stop to the "Dems have all the power and can't do anything" narratives, which, at the moment, look like the unadorned truth.

RAYMEO said...

Bayh gets to keep the $13,000,000.00 from his warchest doesn't he ? I'd do the same thing to be able to keep donated "campaign" funds.

Timothy said...

This makes me thinking Elaine Marshall really hopes Cunningham wins the democrat primary and vice versa.

Anonymous said...

isn't this lobbyist position being vacated the real reason for bayh dropping out?

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/12/health/policy/12pharma.html

Rasmus said...

Christian Liberty,

DKos polls don't claim Obama's approval ratings are 56%. His FAVORABILITY RATINGS are 56%. If one is unable to read the basic metrics of a poll, one maybe shouldn't comment on a polling blog...

Christian Liberty said...

It is strange that Daily Kos/R2000 only asks about Obama's favorability instead of job approval. Maybe they don't want to know how poorly America thinks of Obama's job approval.

gemimail said...

If the GOP can get Pataki to run against Gillbrand, Rossi against Murray and Thompson against Feingold they will regain control of the Senate. For each of these that does not happen, the odds drop considerably. Without these three, they need California just to get a tie and that is very iffy at this point.

 
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