Tag Archives: Wisconsin

An Unusual DeSantis Trend;
A Returning MD-6 Candidate;
A Big Lead for Dem Candidate in Oregon; Trouble in UT-2

By Jim Ellis — Friday, June 30, 2023

President

Wisconsin Poll: DeSantis Pulls Within One of Trump — A new Marquette University Law School regular Wisconsin poll finds an unusual trend developing. In this survey (June 8-13; 913 registered Wisconsin voters; 419 self-identified Republicans; live interview), Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has pulled to within one point of former President Donald Trump, 31-30 percent in terms of first choice preference, a margin not seen in any other state with the exception of the governor’s home domain. Former Vice President Mike Pence and South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott are third and fourth with six and five percent support.

In a general election pairing with President Joe Biden, Gov. DeSantis pulls to within the polling margin of error, trailing 47-45 percent. Ex-President Trump fares considerably worse. Biden would lead this match-up by a substantial 52-43 percent margin. It remains to be seen if the closeness of this poll is an anomaly, or the beginning of a new trend.

House

Maryland Ex-Delegate Neil Parrott

MD-6: Ex-Delegate Parrott to Return — Former state Delegate Neil Parrott (R), who twice lost to Rep. David Trone (D-Potomac), announced earlier in the week that he will return for a third congressional run. Rep. Trone has already declared for the state’s open Senate race, meaning the politically marginal western Maryland 6th Congressional District is also open. Post-redistricting, the 6th became more competitive, so Parrott’s 55-45 percent loss to Rep. Trone was an under-performance.

In 2024, however, the former congressional nominee will face at least four other Republicans, including a fellow ex-Delegate, Brenda Thiam. Five Democrats have announced for the seat, including two sitting Montgomery County state Delegates, Joe Vogel and Lesley Lopez. In the general election, this seat could evolve into a toss-up race.

OR-5: 2022 Nominee Posting Big Dem Primary Lead — Freshman Oregon Republican Rep. Lori Chavez-DeRemer (R-Happy Valley) scored one of the biggest upset victories of the 2022 election cycle when she defeated Democratic nominee Jamie McLeod-Skinner (D) to capture the 5th District seat with a 51-49 percent margin. McLeod-Skinner had unseated then-US Rep. Kurt Schrader in the May Democratic primary.

In a politically marginal district that the FiveThirtyEight organization rates D+2, three credible individuals have already declared their candidacies, state Rep. Janelle Bynum (D-Happy Valley), Oregon Metro Council President Lynn Peterson, and former congressional aide Kevin Easton. McLeod-Skinner confirms she is “seriously considering” running again, and now is releasing an early June poll that posts her to a big lead in a hypothetical Democratic primary among the four early contenders.

According to the GBAO Strategies’ poll (May 30-June 1; 400 likely Democratic OR-5 primary voters), McLeod-Skinner would lead Bynum, Peterson, and Easton, 50-9-5-4 percent. No numbers were released for how any of these Democratic candidates would pair with Rep. Chavez-DeRemer. In any event, we can expect another close general election race here in 2024.

UT-2: Trouble Brewing — A story is running in the Salt Lake Tribune newspaper that special Republican Party convention winner Celeste Maloy, legal counsel to resigning Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Farmington), may not have met the legal requirements to become a candidate. During her time in Rep. Stewart’s DC office, she did not vote in Utah, thus was placed on the inactive voter list. She re-registered in Utah after the special election candidate filing deadline. During her time living in Virginia, she registered to vote and cast ballots in Old Dominion elections.

Republican Party officials say there is no requirement to be a qualified voter to compete in the special election, but state law appears to say something quite different. Some of the Republican candidates who failed to win the recent party convention may file a lawsuit to overturn the results.

At this point, it appears that two candidates, former state Rep. Becky Edwards and ex-Republican National Committeeman Bruce Hough, may meet the petition signature requirement to enter the special election primary that is scheduled for Sept. 5. The special general is calendared for Nov. 21. Rep. Stewart will resign his seat on Sept. 15.

Primary Maneuverings; Tiffany Pegged in Wisconsin; UT-2 Special Election Debates; Sununu Retiring?

By Jim Ellis — Wednesday, June 21, 2023

President

South Carolina: Republicans Opt for Later Primary — South Carolina moving to first position is the focal point of the Democrats’ new presidential pre-Super Tuesday primary calendar, but some of the affected states are not in agreement. Georgia, for example, voted not to adopt the Democratic National Committee recommendation and New Hampshire is sure to follow suit. Michigan has agreed, and both parties will vote on Feb. 27.

Over the weekend, the South Carolina Republican Party convention delegates voted to hold the state’s Republican primary on Feb. 24. Democrats have already chosen Feb. 3. Therefore, it is likely the state will hold two primaries, one for each party. Holding separate primary days in this state has previously happened. Both Palmetto State parties want South Carolina to continue having a premier primary, so the state is likely to make scheduling accommodations for each political entity.

Senate

Wisconsin: GOP Convention Favors Rep. Tiffany — The Wisconsin Republican Party convention conducted straw polls of those who attended over the weekend, and though it was no surprise that former President Donald Trump out-polled Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (53-34 percent), much of the attention fell to the US Senate contest. Since Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-Green Bay) announced last week that he would not run for the Senate, the party is in need of a strong challenger to oppose two-term incumbent Tammy Baldwin (D) next year.

A strong plurality of party delegates are now looking to Rep. Tom Tiffany (R-Minocqua), who is indicating he has some interest in the statewide race. A total of 35 percent of the delegates voted for Rep. Tiffany as their first choice to oppose Sen. Baldwin. Former Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke was second with 19 percent, with businessman and former statewide candidate Kevin Nicholson, ex-state Sen. Roger Roth, and businessmen Eric Hovde and Scott Mayer following with 16, 11, 8 and 1 percent, respectively. None from this group are official candidates.

House

UT-2: Special Convention, Debates Scheduled — The Utah Republican Party has scheduled the special 2nd District GOP live nominating convention for this coming Saturday, June 24 in the city of Delta, which is in the geographical center of the sprawling CD that stretches from the city of Farmington, through the western Salt Lake City suburbs and then all the way to the Arizona border. Democrats are meeting in a virtual convention on June 28.

The 2nd District Republican delegates will vote among the 13 filed Republicans to send one into the special Sept. 5 primary as the official party endorsed candidate. Democrats have three candidates including the favorite for the nomination, state Sen. Kathleen Riebe (D-Cottonwood Heights). The delegates will continue the voting process until one candidate receives majority support. This individual will automatically be placed on the primary ballot. Other candidates wishing to contest the nomination will be required to file 7,000 valid registered voter petition signatures from the party for which they are attempting to qualify.

Republican debates have also been scheduled for the special election. The northern Utah forum was held Tuesday, with the southern district event on Thursday. Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Farmington), for family reasons, is resigning his seat on Sept. 15. The special general election will be held on Nov. 21. Republicans are favored to hold the UT-2 seat which the FiveThirtyEight data organization rates as R+23.

Governor

New Hampshire: Gov. Sununu Leaning Toward Retirement — In a radio interview Monday, four-term Gov. Chris Sununu (R) said, “I don’t think I’m going to run again,” but indicated he would make a firm decision this summer.

Gov. Sununu is only the second four-term governor in state history; no one has served five terms. New Hampshire, along with neighboring Vermont are the only two states that have two-year gubernatorial terms. Already, Manchester Mayor Joyce Craig and Executive Councilor Cinde Warmington have indicated they will compete for the Democratic nomination. In an open situation, the New Hampshire state house would be a prime Democratic conversion target.

Trump Under-Performs in Georgia Poll; Wisconsin Rep. Gallagher Out; UT-2 Special Election Set; Hickingbottom Out – Again

By Jim Ellis — Tuesday, June 13, 2023

President

How fares a generic GOP candidate or former President Donald Trump vs. President Joe Biden?

Georgia Poll: Trump Under-Performs vs. Generic Republican — A political action committee associated with Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) — the Hardworking Americans PAC — released a Cygnal poll of the Peach State Republican electorate (June 5-7; 600 likely Georgia general election voters; interactive voice response system & text) and the results find that a generic-labeled Republican candidate performs much better against President Biden than does former President Donald Trump.

The poll showed that when asked if the respondent would favor President Joe Biden or a Republican candidate, the generic GOP candidate would lead by double digits, 48-38 percent. If Trump were the Republican candidate, however, the race resolves into a virtual tie, with the former president scoring 42.0 percent and Biden attracting 41.4 percent support. Arguably, Georgia is the most important bellwether state on the 2024 presidential map. Considering the swing states in play, a Republican candidate cannot win the presidency in 2024 without taking Georgia.

Senate

Wisconsin: Rep. Gallagher Out — Wisconsin Congressman Mike Gallagher (R-Green Bay), who appeared to be the Republican leadership’s top Senate candidate recruitment target, said on Friday that he will not challenge Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D) next year. Gallagher is moving up the House ladder and wants to remain on that path. Some believe he will instead wait until 2028 to make a statewide move when Sen. Ron Johnson (R) is expected to retire.

A new poll found former Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke leading the Republican field, though he is not an announced candidate. Rep. Gallagher was a strong second. Rep. Tom Tiffany (R-Minocqua) is testing the Senate political waters, so chances of him pursuing a statewide bid considering the Gallagher decision may increase.

House

UT-2: Special Election Set — Gov. Spencer Cox (R) set the special primary election to replace resigning US Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Farmington) for Sept. 5 and the special general on Nov. 21; the candidate filing period closes on Wednesday. Therefore, individuals have little time to declare their candidacies.

For the Republicans, who will be favored to hold the seat, former state House Speaker Greg Hughes, ex-state representative and US Senate candidate Becky Edwards, and former Republican National Committeeman Bruce Hough have announced they will run, and at this point comprise the first tier. Several others are expected to run also. For the Democrats, the lone pre-filing contender is state Sen. Kathleen Riebe (D-Cottonwood Heights).

After filing closes, the parties will call a special district convention. The delegates will then nominate one candidate to advance into the special primary by majority vote. Others can still qualify for the primary through the petition signature process.

Governor

Mississippi: Hickingbottom Out Again — Earlier in the year, the Mississippi Democratic Party disqualified candidate Bob Hickingbottom from running for governor in the Democratic primary, saying he did not meet the signature requirement and because he previously ran statewide on a third party line. In late May, Hickingbottom won his court challenge to the Democrats’ ruling and was placed back on the primary ballot.

On Friday, however, the Mississippi state Supreme Court overturned the lower court decision and ruled that the MDP has the right to disqualify Hickingbottom. Therefore, Hickingbottom will be prohibited from running in the Democratic primary. The decision restores Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley to unopposed status for the party nomination. Democratic leaders wanted this to give Presley the biggest advantage possible as he tries to unseat Gov. Tate Reeves (R) in the 2023 general election.

Polls Show Republican Presidential Race Getting Tighter; A Twist in Wisconsin; SCOTUS Rules on Alabama Redistricting; Special Election in UT-2

By Jim Ellis — Monday, June 12, 2023

President

Former President Donald Trump still up, but down in polling.

State Polls: Republican Race Getting Tighter — Two very recent Republican presidential state polls were released late last week, one from Wisconsin and the other in Utah. While the Wisconsin spread is typical of what we are seeing in other places, the Utah poll has closed to within one percentage point.

Public Policy Polling (June 5-6; 507 likely Wisconsin voters) sees former President Donald Trump leading the Wisconsin GOP primary but with well less than majority support. The ballot test gives the former president a 41-25 percent lead over Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. Ex-Vice President Mike Pence is next with eight percent support, and no one else breaks five percent. In an isolation question featuring Trump and DeSantis, the former pPresident leads this only 43-39 percent.

The Utah numbers are much closer. In this Dan Jones & Associates poll for the Utah Republican Party (May 22-June 1; 421 registered Utah Republican voters), Trump’s advantage is only 27-26 percent over Gov. DeSantis.

Former Rep. Liz Cheney, not even a candidate, places third with seven percent, and no other candidate breaks the five percent mark. However, this poll’s long sampling period and small respondent universe, along with the introduction of Cheney into the mix, casts an accuracy shadow over this poll.

Senate

Wisconsin: Polling Leader Emerges; Not the GOP’s Top Choice — The Wisconsin Public Policy Polling survey (see President section above) also tested the state’s US Senate race featuring two-term incumbent Tammy Baldwin (D).

The Republican primary ballot test suggests that former Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke would lead a prospective group of GOP candidates with 40 percent preference. Placing second is Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-Green Bay) with 20 percent, followed by Rep. Tom Tiffany (R-Minocqua) at 10 percent. Clarke is not an official candidate, and viewed as someone who would be unlikely to win the general election. So far, Rep. Gallagher has not made a discernible move to enter the Senate race. Rep. Tiffany is testing the waters.

The Wisconsin race could become competitive, but Sen. Baldwin would begin any general election as the favorite to win in November.

House

Redistricting: SCOTUS Rules on Alabama — The US Supreme Court, on a 5-4 decision with Chief Justice John Roberts and Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh joining the majority, ruled in favor of the plaintiffs in the Alabama racial gerrymandering case. Therefore, the Alabama map will be redrawn to reflect a second minority district from the state’s seven seats. Louisiana will likely have to be redrawn as well.

Possible redraws could occur in several other southern states. The ruling is clearly a win for the Democrats and gives them even better odds of re-capturing the House majority in the 2024 election.

UT-2: Special Election Set — Since Utah Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Farmington) submitted an irrevocable letter of resignation for Sept. 15 to Gov. Spencer Cox (R), that action has allowed the state’s chief executive to set at least the special primary election even before the congressman officially leaves office.

Under Utah law, the governor must schedule the special congressional election concurrent with another election. The municipal elections were scheduled for Aug. 15 and Nov. 7, but Gov. Cox is preparing to send the legislature a measure to change those dates to Sept. 5 and Nov. 21 and add the special congressional election to that ballot. These dates meet the federal electoral notice requirements.

The legislature is expected to comply. If they do not, the 2nd District seat could remain vacant for more than a year awaiting the regular primary schedule.

In this instance, the seat will be filled while Rep. Stewart remains in office, which is similar to the Oklahoma law that allows a resigning elected official to serve until a replacement is selected.

First GOP Debate Scheduled; Delaware Senate Candidate Queuing Up; House Race News

By Jim Ellis — Tuesday, June 6, 2023

President

2024 Republican presidential debates

Debates: First GOP Debate Scheduled for Aug. 23 — The Republican National Committee has announced that the first 2024 Republican presidential debate will occur on Wednesday, Aug. 23 of this year, at the site of the 2024 Republican National Convention, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Criteria for participation was also announced.

To be included in the debate, candidates must reach at least one percent support in three independent national polls of at least 800 sampled Republicans taken on or after July 1, 2023, they must have at least 40,000 documented contributors, have a declaration of candidacy statement filed with the Federal Election Commission, and sign various pledges to the RNC, the most important of which is that they will support the eventual Republican presidential nominee.

Senate

Delaware: Rep. Blunt Rochester Preparing Senate Run — The Politico publication reports that at-large US Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-Wilmington), the individual that retiring Sen. Tom Carper (D) hopes will succeed him, is indeed preparing an official launch of a US Senate campaign. The story indicates that we can expect an announcement sometime later this month.

There has also been no evidence that term-limited Gov. John Carney (D) is about to enter the race. If not, the primary and general election campaigns should be a breeze for Rep. Blunt Rochester, which, for her, would be just like running another re-election campaign. As the state’s sole US House member, she has conducted all four of her House elections as a statewide campaign.

Her move to the Senate race will leave a competitive open House race in her wake. Most of the competition will be in the September 2024 Democratic primary, but seeing a strong Republican emerge may not be out of the question to force a contested general election. At this point, however, expect both the Senate and House seats to remain under Democratic Party control.

House

GA-14: Potential Move to Challenge Rep. Taylor Greene — Right-wing gadfly activist and two-time Florida congressional candidate Laura Loomer (R) is citing an online voluntary response website poll that supposedly reveals 75 percent of respondents who want to see Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Rome) challenged for the 2024 Republican nomination because she supported Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s debt ceiling bill. Loomer characterizes Rep. Greene as a “Primary professional con-woman,” for supporting the debt crisis bipartisan compromise. She also states that she can move to Georgia and run because she has proven herself as a “robust campaign fundraiser.”

While Loomer may well have raised over $3 million for two campaigns, she would need to improve her vote-getting ability in order to unseat Rep. Greene. First, she has already run in two different Florida districts, once against Rep. Lois Frankel (D-West Palm Beach), where she lost by 20 percentage points, and again in a primary challenge against Rep. Dan Webster (R-Clermont/The Villages). In this latter 2022 race, she fell seven percentage points from unseating the Republican incumbent.

PA-10: Ex-Statewide Candidate Won’t Again Challenge Rep. Scott Perry — Former Pennsylvania state auditor and 2020 congressional candidate Eugene DePasquale (D) will not be returning to the federal campaign wars in 2024. Viewed as six-term Rep. Scott Perry’s (R-Dillsburg/Harrisburg) toughest possible Democratic opponent – the 2020 race ended 53-47 percent in Rep. Perry’s favor – Pasquale late last week announced that he will return to the statewide theater in an open bid for attorney general.

Rep. Perry already has Democratic opposition for 2024. Shamaine Davis, his 2022 opponent who he defeated 56-44 percent, returns for a re-match. Carlisle School Board member Rick Coplen, a retired Army officer who lost the 2022 Democratic primary to Davis, is also returning to run again. With DePasquale out of the House picture, Rep. Perry, who voted against the McCarthy debt ceiling compromise, will again begin as a favorite for re-election.

Poll Shows Biden Trailing Both Trump & DeSantis; New Senate Candidate in Maryland; IL-7, NC-13 House Candidates Emerge

By Jim Ellis — Wednesday, May 10, 2023

President

Former President Donald Trump;
Florida Gov. Ron Desantis (R)

ABC/Washington Post Poll: Biden Trailing Both Trump & DeSantis — ABC News and the Washington Post released the results of their new national poll (April 28-May 3; 1,006 US adults; 438 Republican and Republican-leaning voters; 396 Democratic and Democratic-leaning voters; live interview) and the data reveals President Joe Biden trailing both former President Donald Trump and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis in ranges beyond the polling margin of error. The latter point, relating to the polling margin of error, is significant since the sample cut seems to skew Republican.

On the national ballot test, among an unspecified number of registered voters, President Biden trails Trump, 39-45 percent, and Gov. DeSantis, 38-44 percent. As stated before many times in previous posts, the national popular vote poll is not particularly important. The race will likely come down to how key states such as Arizona, Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin ultimately break.

Senate

Maryland: PG County Executive to Announce Senate Campaign — Prince Georges County Executive Angela Alsobrooks (D) officially kicked off her open US Senate campaign yesterday. The move has been expected. Already in the Democratic primary race are US Rep. David Trone (D-Potomac) and Montgomery County Councilman Will Jawando. Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Takoma Park) and former Rep. John Delaney (D) are potential candidates. The Democratic primary will almost assuredly decide the successor to retiring Sen. Ben Cardin (D). The Maryland nomination battle, which will be hotly contested and a determinative precursor for the general election, is scheduled for May 14, 2024.

House

IL-7: Rep. Davis Running; to Face Dem Primary — The second Democratic challenger to Illinois Rep. Danny Davis (D-Chicago) came forward, which drew a quick response from the Davis camp indicating that the 81-year-old veteran representative will seek re-election. Davis had been on the rumored retirement list.

Educator Nikhil Bhatia (D) announced her candidacy, which precipitated the response from the Davis political operation. The major potential opponent, however, is Chicago city treasurer and former state Rep. Melissa Conyears-Ervin (D) who has filed a congressional exploratory committee and reiterated that she continues to test the political waters irrespective whether Rep. Davis will be her opponent.

The Democratic primary is the key to re-election (FiveThirtyEight rating D+70), so the March 19, 2024 election date is the key to winning the succeeding term. The race is worth watching. Rep. Davis won the 2022 Dem primary with only a 52-45 percent margin over community organizer Kina Collins.

NC-13: State Rep. Files Federal Exploratory Committee — Wake County state Rep. Erin Pare (D-Fuquay-Varina) announced the formation of a congressional exploratory committee in anticipation of the 13th Congressional District being redrawn before the 2024 election.

The state Supreme Court opened the door to another congressional and legislative redraw with their related ruling at the end of April. The new map is expected to help Republicans, and the 13th District, which freshman Rep. Wiley Nickel (D-Raleigh) represents and currently houses southern Wake County, the Fayetteville area, and Johnston County, is cast as a politically marginal district (FiveThirtyEight rating: R+3; Dave’s Redistricting App partisan lean: 49.5D-48.1R). It will likely become better Republican territory.

The redrawing process likely will begin after the US Supreme Court takes action on the North Carolina partisan gerrymandering case currently on their docket. A decision is expected before the end of June.

Battleground Polling

By Jim Ellis — Monday, May 1, 2023

President

Battleground States: A Look Inside the Numbers — The key 2024 presidential campaign battleground states are already known, and a national polling firm just completed a study covering five of these critical domains.

Public Opinion Strategies (POS) conducted a series of 500-sample general election polls in the important battleground states during the April 11-20 period, and all of the surveys produced very close results while highlighting a familiar pattern. This research gives us an early indication that we will again see a tight general election campaign.

POS tested both former President Donald Trump and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis individually against President Joe Biden in Arizona, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. In every instance, we see DeSantis running better when paired against Biden than does Trump.

First, in Arizona, President Biden would lead Trump by a single point, 45-44 percent, while DeSantis would record a six-point advantage over the Democratic incumbent, 48-42 percent.

For Republicans, Arizona is one of the most critical states on the board. Unless the eventual GOP nominee can capture Arizona and Georgia — the Peach State was not included in the POS battleground state study – the chances of attaining national victory are almost nil. Together, these two states account for 27 of the 35 conversion electoral votes a Republican candidate will need to win the White House.

Michigan, based upon the 2022 election results, is now viewed as leaning decidedly toward the Democrats, so the Wolverine State will likely not be as heavily emphasized on the Republican target list as some of the others covered in the POS multi-state study. Still, the current polling results put the Republicans within early victory range.

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