Wednesday, September 22, 2010

WaPo: PA. Senate Race Now 'Leans Republican'

Over at the Washington Post, Chris Cilizza now says the Pennsylvania Senate race has moved from "tossup" to "leans Republican."
Because the latest polls all show Pat Toomey increasing his lead over Joe Sestak. Despite a huge influx of ca$h from the Democrat Senatorial Campaign Committee and lots of TV ads, Sestak doesn't seem to be able to pick up any ground against Toomey.
In fact, the latest Quinnipiac University poll, out this morning has Toomey leading 50 to 43 percent. That means that Toomey has now reached the magic 50 percent mark. But Cilizza notes that the internals of the poll spell even more trouble for Sestak and the Democrats.
Remember: President Obama carried Pennsylvania by 10 points. But Obama and the Democrats have now suffered a dramatic reversal. The poll shows that just 40 percent of Pennsylvanians approve of the job the President is doing. At the same time, 56 percent disapprove of the President's performance. That's a 16 point spread in the wrong direction.
I'm not surprised at all this. Even some Democrat friends of mine in Pennsylvania now confess that they are "disappointed' with the President's performance. They've got buyers' remorse.
And among independents the picture is even more grim for the Democrats. Independents are turning away from Obama and Sestak and flocking to Toomey who they see as the well-grounded, common sense candidate.
Furthermore, it's very likely Pennsylvania will elect a Republican Governor.
And, Republicans have a lot more enthusiasm about their candidates than Democrats do. They'll a lot more eager to vote and anxious to bring others along with them.
All of these things give Toomey a big advantage and have allowed him to hold onto a fairly stable lead.
But Sestak is slippery.
And he's a grappler with a full menu of tricks.
Advice to Toomey: Stay on offense. Hold Sestak accountable. Keep the upper hand. And watch your back.

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