Thursday, April 23, 2009

Senate Dems having trouble with independents?

There were two main reasons for the bad polling numbers we released on Michael Bennet yesterday. The first is that a lot of Hispanics are not happy about him. Overall 23% of the Democrats we polled were Hispanic. But among the Democrats who said they disapproved of Bennet's performance so far, 46% were Hispanic. What that mean was there were more Democrats (16%) who said they didn't like what Bennet was doing than there were Republicans (11%) who said they did like it.

That makes independents key to Bennet's standing in the closely divided state, and his numbers weren't very good with them (32/43).

We've done approval ratings on eight Democratic Senators over the last six weeks, and even though their average review with all voters is a net +12, the average with independents is just barely in positive territory at +.125:


Overall Approval

Approval w/ Indys


Michael Bennet




Mark Udall




Amy Klobuchar




Kay Hagan




Blanche Lincoln




Mark Pryor




Tom Carper




Ted Kaufman




This is a small sample but the fact that all eight of these folks are doing worse among independents than their overall approval numbers is a trend we will certainly continue to watch over the course of our polling this year, and it could have implications for 2010.


Senate2008Guru said...

Given that Democrats over the last several years have enjoyed significant registration increases, particularly in comparison to Republicans, could the fact that Dems are lagging among independents in these polls be more a reflection of the fact that many independents have registered as Democrats over the last several years - particularly in the last few months leading up to last year's election as a reflection of Obamamania, leaving the independent pool to be relatively more right-leaning than it would have been a few years back?

(This is Senate Guru - the Senate2008Guru is my old blogger handle.)

Tom Jensen said...

That is definitely plausible.

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