Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Democratic senatorial committee to resume ads; WKU poll shows Grimes voters are heavily anti-McConnell

It's still a race, but . . .
  • The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, which dismayed many Democrats last week by stopping its Kentucky advertising, is back in the race, reports Manu Raju of Politico: "The party committee is reserving $650,000 in air time to boost Alison Lundergan Grimes after reviewing recent internal and public polling, a DSCC official told Politico. The polling, the source says, suggested that independent voters are moving in the Democrat's direction."
  • Reid Wilson of The Washington Post writes in his daily "Read In" that Post reporter Paul Kane offers this take on the race: "Alison Lundergan Grimes wins if voters are thinking about Mitch McConnell and his lousy approval ratings. Mitch McConnell wins if voters are considering President Obama and his even lousier approval ratings. In an era of political negativity, there may not be a single race this year that's so dependent on turning attention to the other side."
  • "The Kentucky Senate race comes down this: whether voters are more willing to vote against a Barack Obama who is not on the ballot, or a Mitch McConnell who is," writes Aaron Blake of the Post, citing the Big Red Poll by Western Kentucky University social scientists. The poll was taken over two weeks, ending Oct. 19, so it has no value as a current snapshot, but it does reveal that "very few people are actually voting for Grimes. Rather, 60 percent of Grimes supporters say their vote is more about casting a ballot against McConnell," Blake reports. "Voters for McConnell, meanwhile, are much more likely to say it's about supporting the incumbent (62 percent) than opposing Grimes (33 percent)." Blake wonders "what these numbers would look like if you substituted Grimes's name for another Democrat, President Obama. A recent CBS News poll showed 56 percent of Republicans nationally say their midterm vote will be a symbolic vote against Obama. That doesn't mean equally as many McConnell backers would say their vote is more about Obama than McConnell. But given the tenor of the race and the repeated attempts by Republicans to tie Grimes to Obama (along with her all-too-telling refusal to say whether she voted for Obama), it's clear that the president is a major subplot of this race."
  • Chris Cillizza of the Post answers the most-asked question about the race: Is it over? "There is a scenario by which Grimes wins, but it is not the most likely scenario. (Of the three major election models that aim to predict outcomes, the best chance Grimes has is a 22 percent probability of winning in the FiveThirtyEight model.)"
  • The National Rifle Association is running full-page, color ad in rural newspapers saying that "Mitch McConnell Will Stop the Obama Gun Control Agenda." Here's the rest of the ad:

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