By Jim Ellis — Thursday, Oct. 26, 2023
Alaska: First Poll with Kennedy — The Alaska Survey Research firm tested the 2024 general election with, for the first time, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. on the questionnaire as an Independent candidate. Some have been saying that Kennedy on the ballot could force former President Donald Trump below 50 percent, which would jump-start a Ranked Choice Voting round. This could open the door to President Joe Biden winning Alaska even though he would be nowhere close to victory in the initial vote.
According to the ASR data (Oct. 13-18; 1,375 likely Alaska general election voters; online) Trump is leading the field but with just 37 percent support. President Biden follows with 29 percent, while Kennedy draws 17 percent. In an initial test without Kennedy, Trump would lead President Biden 45-37 percent. Therefore, both candidates would yield 8 percent support to Kennedy. The key here for Trump is making sure he does not fall below the 50 percent threshold, and this poll suggests he would be in danger of doing so if Kennedy continues to remain relatively strong.
SenateMaryland: Gov. Moore Endorses Senate Candidate — Maryland Gov. Wes Moore (D) involved himself in what promises to be a hotly contested open Democratic primary to replace retiring Sen. Ben Cardin (D). Maryland’s voting history suggests that Sen. Cardin’s successor will be found in the Democratic primary, as Republicans will have little chance to win a Maryland statewide race in a presidential election year.
Gov. Moore announced that he is supporting Prince Georges County Executive Angela Alsobrooks for the party nomination. Her chief opponent is US representative and Total Beverage chain founder, Rep. David Trone (D-Potomac). The Moore endorsement is a signal to the African American community, the base of the state’s Democratic Party, that they should unite behind Alsobrooks.
Maryland’s black population accounts for just under 32 percent of the state’s residents. In a Democratic primary, however, their size is significantly larger.
Rep. Trone has already put just under $10 million of his own money into his campaign account and is currently advertising in targeted markets. According to Trone’s latest campaign finance report, 98 percent of his money comes from him.
NJ-7: Ex-Rep. Malinowski Responds — Former two-term US Rep. Tom Malinowski (D) responded to a statewide op-ed piece asking him to challenge the man who unseated him in 2022, freshman US Rep. Tom Kean Jr. (R-Westfield).
While Malinowski has not publicly ruled out running again, his response to the piece suggests that he will not become a candidate. His quote: “I am very happy in my life right now and looking forward to the next challenge, not backward.” Currently in the Democratic primary are former State Department official Jason Blazakis and progressive left activist Sue Altman.
PA-10: New Democratic Leader — According to a new Public Policy Polling Democratic primary survey of Pennsylvania’s competitive 10th District (Oct. 16-17; 547 PA-10 likely Democratic primary voters; live interview & text), the respondents are looking for a new nominee to challenge US Rep. Scott Perry (R-Dillsburg/Harrisburg).
The poll suggests that retired news anchor Janelle Stelson holds an early 33-20 percent edge over 2022 Democratic nominee and Harrisburg City Councilwoman Shamaine Daniels. In November, Daniels held Rep. Perry to a 54-46 percent victory. Her 27 years on the air in south-central Pennsylvania provides her with a substantial district-wide name identification advantage.
Expect this race to again be competitive, but Rep. Perry begins as the favorite for re-election. The FiveThirtyEight data organization rates PA-10 as R+9. The Daily Kos Elections site ranks the seat as the 37th most vulnerable seat in the Republican Conference.