POLITICAL WIRE’S HEADLINES – 5/9
Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN) lost his bid for a 7th term as Richard Mourdock (R) won the Republican primary for the Senate nomination, the Indianapolis Star reports.
“Mourdock originally was seen as a upstart candidate with little chance of winning. But he came out of the gate with the backing of a majority of state party leaders around the state, plus tea party activists who coalesced around his candidacy. With no other challenger to Lugar, and with the help of outside groups who targeted Lugar with millions of dollars in negative ads and mailings, it became clear in the final days of the campaign that Lugar would lose.”
Mourdock advances to a general election match up against Rep. Joe Donnelly (D-IN), who was unopposed in the Democratic primary.
“New details about a foiled terror plot in Yemen suggested the would-be suicide bomber was an informant who funneled vital information to the U.S., a scenario that would represent a successful infiltration of terrorism’s inner circles,” the Wall Street Journalreports.
Bloomberg reports that almost two-thirds of private-sector job growth in the past five decades came with Democrats in the White House.
“The BGOV Barometer shows that since Democrat John F. Kennedy took office in January 1961, non-government payrolls in the U.S. swelled by almost 42 million jobs under Democrats, compared with 24 million for Republican presidents… Democrats hold the edge though they occupied the Oval Office for 23 years since Kennedy’s inauguration, compared with 28 for the Republicans.”
“Among suburban voters, a key electoral group, it was just a narrow plurality in favor, 45%/43%, in March. Granted, that’s a 19-point shift from 37% favor, 54% opposed. But it’s also a group Obama won in 2008 (50%-48%), which in the same March poll said it preferred Romney (49%-43%). And that’s despite Obama leading overall in the poll (51%-44%)…”
“In other words, Obama’s coalition of Democrats, black voters, women, Hispanics and urban voters are all intact — and in favor of gay marriage. But swing voters, especially suburban voters are still split — as is Obama, apparently.”
A new Reuters/Ipsos poll shows President Obama’s lead over Mitt Romney has grown to seven points, 49% to 42%, “due to increased support from independent voters and more optimism about the U.S. economy.”
According to the campaign, the spots feature “first person accounts from Obama for America organizers and supporters sharing their personal stories of how the President’s policies have empowered Latino families and communities.”
A new Rasmussen survey in Massachusetts shows the U.S. Senate race a dead heat with Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) and challenger Elizabeth Warren (D) each tied at 45%.
A new Public Policy Polling survey in Iowa finds President Obama leading Mitt Romney by 10 points, 51% to 41%, matching his 2008 margin of victory in the state.
Key finding: “The reason for Obama’s enhanced standing in the state is pretty simple- over the last six months he’s become more popular and Romney’s become less popular.”
“I feel so relieved to be at the stage I’m at in my life right now. Because you know if I want to wear my glasses I’m wearing my glasses. If I want to wear my hair back I’m pulling my hair back. You know at some point it’s just not something that deserves a lot of time and attention.”
— Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in an interview with CNN, on a photograph of her “without makeup, except lipstick, wearing thick rimmed glasses during a recent news conference in Dhaka, Bangladesh.”
A new Public Policy Polling survey in Ohio shows President Obama leading Mitt Romney in a general election match up by seven points, 50% to 43%.
Key finding: “Ohio voters don’t love Obama. They’re evenly split with 48% approving and 48% disapproving of him, although that is an improvement from the negative numbers he’s posted during most of his time in office. Obama’s lead in the state may be driven more by the fact that Ohioans just don’t much care for Mitt Romney. 37% have a favorable opinion of him to 53% with a negative one.”
Wall Street Journal: “A look at some leading enthusiasm indicators indicates how important the race to build enthusiasm will be over the next six months. Mr. Obama has some clear problems to worry about on the enthusiasm front, particularly among those young voters so crucial to him four years ago. But Mr. Romney, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, has some enthusiasm soft spots of his own to fret about.”
A new Washington Post poll finds the U.S. Senate race in Virginia is still a dead heat with Tim Kaine (D) and George Allen (R) both at 46%.
With just six months until the election, the results confirm the contest’s status among the most competitive in the county.
Matt Taibbi: “The people who work for the wire services and the news networks are physically incapable of writing sentences like, ‘This election is even more over than the Knicks-Heat series.’ They are required, if not by law then by neurological reflex, to describe every presidential campaign as ‘fierce’ and ‘drawn-out’ and ‘hotly-contested.'”
“But this campaign, relatively speaking, will not be fierce or hotly contested. Instead it’ll be disappointing, embarrassing, and over very quickly, like a hand job in a Bangkok bathhouse. And everybody knows it. It’s just impossible to take Mitt Romney seriously as a presidential candidate. Even the news reporters who are paid to drum up dramatic undertones are having a hard time selling Romney as half of a titanic title bout.”
A new Fairleigh Dickinson-PublicMind poll in New Jersey finds Gov. Chris Christie’s (R) approval rate at 56% — the highest it’s ever been.
Said pollster Peter Woolley: “It’s hard to imagine that a minority party governor could really do much better. Unless maybe he runs into a burning building and rescues an old lady. But that trick has been taken.”
A new Gallup poll finds that 50% of Americans believe same-sex marriage should be legal, with the same rights as traditional marriages — down slightly from 53% last year. Forty-eight percent say such marriages should not be legal.
It’s only the second time in Gallup’s history of tracking this question that at least half of Americans have supported legal same-sex marriage.
“Being a vice president is kind of like being a first lady. You are there to support and serve the president. There is no job description.”
— Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, quoted by the New York Times.
AFP: “The transatlantic economic crisis has scythed through Europe’s leaders. So, as November looms, can Barack Obama avoid becoming the highest profile victim of a trend shaping world politics?”
Over the weekend, France President Nicolas Sarkozy joined Britain’s Gordon Brown, Italy’s Silvio Berlusconi, Ireland’s Brian Cowen, and leaders of Denmark, Spain and Portugal sent packing since Obama took office himself in 2009.
National Review notes Mitt Romney’s campaign is bringing on new advisers at a rapid pace.
“It’s also a realization, Romney observers add, that the discipline and control of the primary campaign cannot be sustained in coming months — that there needs to be a sprawling national effort with many faces and responsibilities. Boston may still be the nucleus, but the campaign is now bigger than a Beantown clique.”
“There has also been a push by Romney advisers to better connect the campaign with the Republican National Committee and its vast apparatus, now that the primary has ended. Romney liaisons are now working within the RNC, coordinating messaging and general-election themes with the full blessing of Reince Priebus, the national chairman.”
Rick Santorum urged his supporters to back Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign in a late-night email that ignored that Santorum once calling Romney the “worst Republican in the country” during their bitter contest, the AP reports.
“Romney visited Santorum for more than an hour on Friday at the Pittsburgh office of Santorum’s longtime strategist. The session covered many of Santorum’s concerns about Romney’s campaign, especially the sincerity of his vow to repeal Democrats’ national health care law that was modeled on one Romney signed into law as Massachusetts governor. Those worries, it seems, were assuaged during their private session that ended without Santorum’s public backing.”
Howard Kurtz: “But a late-night e-mail endorsement feels like Santorum having it both ways: not really endorsing, but able to tell the Republican Party that he fell into line. It seemed like a hold-your-nose moment.”Explore posts in the same categories: Candidates, National, Politics