Thursday, June 24, 2010

Casey leads Santorum in rematch

If Republicans want to beat Bob Casey for reelection in 2012 they're going to have to look somewhere other than Rick Santorum for a candidate. Casey leads Santorum 51-39 in a hypothetical rematch of their 2006 contest, an impressive performance given the very tough political climate for Democrats.

There are two particular signs of strength that bode well for Casey regardless of who his opponent in two years is. He wins 18% of the Republican vote, much more crossover support than just about any Democrat in the country right now is showing. And he leads Santorum 41-32 with independents, a strong contrast from the 41-21 deficit fellow Democrat Joe Sestak faces against Pat Toomey with unaffiliated voters right now.

Casey's approval numbers are now on positive ground with 36% of voters giving him good marks to 35% unhappy with his performance. That's an improvement from PPP's late March poll of the state that showed Casey with a negative 31/38 approval rating. Not much has happened since March other than the health care issue that hurt Democrats going into the rear view mirror- that passage of time is working to Casey's advantage.

More voters in Pennsylvania (39%) have a negative opinion of Santorum than a positive one (36%).

A lot could happen between now and 2012 but if Casey is polling this strongly in what seems likely to be a brutal year for Democrats it bodes well for where he'll be standing a couple years from now.

Full results here

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Why did you poll an unpopular Republican? you knew that you'll get these results! You would've gotten a much better picture if you would match him up with... say, Tom Ridge.

thegiggletest said...

I agree. Rick Santorum is more likely to run for president than the senate again. And besides, this assumes that Bob Casey will be running for re-election, which given Evan Bayh's decision, is not a certainty.

NRH said...

This provides a pretty good simile for the Sestak-Toomey race this year. Toomey is a Republican in the Santorum mold, while Sestak is a lot closer to the Casey end of the Democratic spectrum than, say, the Bernie Sanders end. As this year's Pennsylvania Senate race continues, expect to see Sestak move comfortably into the lead as Democrats come home and Toomey remains mired in his 'Santorum Mark Two' image.

Dustin Ingalls said...

"And besides, this assumes that Bob Casey will be running for re-election, which given Evan Bayh's decision, is not a certainty."

How does Evan Bayh's decision have anything to do with Bob Casey?

Ryan said...

Toomey is not exactly like Santorum. Toomey has not been a social conservative blowhard and his record shows it. Toomey's social issues voting the record is all over the place. Remember the pro-life groups supported Specter for the most part over Toomey in 2004 because Toomey opposed funding them. Toomey is economically conservative, but saying he is a firebrand like Santorum is a farce.

Sestak is interesting as he is the first progressive to run statewide since Joe Hoeffel in 2004 then you have to go back to Harris Wofford in 1994.

Anonymous said...

"Remember the pro-life groups supported Specter for the most part over Toomey in 2004 because Toomey opposed funding them."

What are you talking about. Toomey has a 100% rating from the national right to life folks. When he first ran for congress he had a hands off approach to abortion, but then he got ambitious and flip-flopped. Toomey has become one of the most fire-branded people now that he thinks it will win him elections.

Anonymous said...

I'm one of the Pennsylvanians that "threw out" Rick Santorum. I voted for Bob Casey and I would vote for him again.

I never want to see Rick Santorum hold office ever again. He is obnoxious and condescending. The Republicans were grooming him to run for President when we threw him out in Pa- awesome. He was Bush's boy. Now he's in some "conservative think tank." That's a tank on empty.

Anonymous said...

Rick Scratchtorum is a real idiot.

 
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