Tuesday, June 28, 2011

WI-Recall: Two Dems leading, a third close

DailyKos sent PPP out to Wisconsin again to have a look at the upcoming state Senate recall elections, here's what they came back with:

PPP (6/28 likely voters, 3/14 in parenthesis*)
Senate district 32
Jennifer Shilling (D): 55 (55)
Dan Kapanke (R-Inc): 42 (41)

Senate district 18
Jessica King (D): 50 (49)
Randy Hopper (R-Inc): 47 (44)

Senate district 10
Sheila Harsdorf (R-Inc): 50 (48)
Shelly Moore (D): 45 (44)

* the 3/14 poll pitted the GOP incumbents against generic democrats

There has been remarkably little movement in these races since the first poll that PPP did on them back in mid-march. I say remarkably because in the earlier poll PPP didn't even know who the Republicans were going to be facing and so polled them against a generic democratic opponent.

There is good news in this poll and there is bad news; the good news, Dan Kapanke is toast and Jessica King is up by a small amount on Randy Hopper. The bad news, Sheila Harsdorf continues to have a small but significant lead.

The other race from the last set of PPP polls that was potentially competitive, Senate district 2, wasn't polled in this go around, but the last time it was polled Rob Cowles lead the generic Dem 45 - 43. If that race has experienced as little movement as the rest of these than I would expect it to be closer than the SD10 race.

What's going to muck all this up though is the weird scheduling of these elections, the six Republican Senators will face general election recalls (assuming the likely occurrence that they survive the primaries on July 12th) on August 9th, while the three Democratic Senators will face general election recalls on August 16th (with primaries on July 19th).

Since these are special elections it's hard to tell what the likely voter group will look like on election day and scheduling of the elections on different days a week apart only adds to this difficulty.

The other thing to think about is how the scheduling of the elections in this order will actually play out. What I mean is that the GOP and their supporters in the state will know as much as a week ahead of the elections for the three Democrats, what the outcome was of the six recalls against the Republicans.

So if the Democrats can win three of the seats, the GOP will have a week to pour money and volunteers into the three Democratic districts. The Democrats may not be invulnerable either; Dave Hansen's SD30's PVI is D+3, Robert Wirch's SD22 is D+4 and SD12 represented by Jim Holperin is even.

The other thing to consider is that if the Democrats manage to win three seats and take the Senate back, will the voters in the districts with Democrats facing recalls think they've already won and not go vote? I'm sure there will be a large effort to make the election dates clear to voters, but this is all going to be happening in the middle of summer.

All of these factors conspire to make the outcome of these recalls almost impossible to predict. The only thing that's certain is Democrats in Wisconsin need your help in whatever way you can, here's a link to the Orange to Blue page on ActBlue for all the Democrats involved and here's a link to the Wisconsin Democratic Party's website.

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