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PA: 2010 Sen (F&M 1/18-24)


1/18-24/10; 993 registered voters, 3.1% margin of errror
443 registered Democrats, 4.7% margin of error
416 registered Republicans, 4.8% margin of error
395 likely voters
Mode: Live telephone interviews
(F&M Release)

Pennsylvania

2010 Governor: Democratic Primary
10% Onorato, 4% Wagner, 4% Doherty, 4% Hoeffel, 2% Knox (chart)

2010 Governor: Republican Primary
23% Corbett, 5% Rohrer

2010 Senate: Democratic Primary
30% Specter, 13% Sestak (chart)

2010 Senate: General Election
45% Toomey, 31% Specter (chart)
41% Toomey, 19% Sestak (chart)

Favorable / Unfavorable
Ed Rendell: 42 / 45 (chart)
Arlen Specter: 35 / 43 (chart)
Bob Casey: 32 / 20 (chart)
Barack Obama: 44 / 44 (chart)
Joe Sestak: 8 / 6
Pat Toomey: 15 / 7

Job Rating
Pres. Obama: 38% Excellent/Good, 61% Fair/Poor (chart)
Sen. Specter: 34 / 58 (chart)

 

Comments
CUWriter:

I hate "excellent/good" and "fair/poor" polls. There are plenty of people who would say they "approve" of the job someone is doing even if they were doing a "fair" job.

Still, it's pretty eye-opening that Obama's favorables are dead even and Specter is underwater. Even though Sestak is way back of Toomey in the general, I think he'd actually have a better shot at this because he is not well known.

Also, does anyone know much about Franklin & Marshall in terms of their house effects and accuracy?

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Farleftandproud:

This is a mistake. I didn't see any independents interviewed, just Democrats and Republicans. Obviously this pollster used some independents to put it in Toomey's favor. If Democrats in PA would actually support Toomey, than PA is a more stupid state than I could have ever imagined.

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Farleftandproud:

I am not excited about Spector being a Democrat, but surprised Cestak isn't doing better. I think during a better Democratic year Sestak would be extremely popular; he reminds me somewhat of Sherrod Brown from Ohio. He is strong on social justice, and progressive yet has a military background, in which the two don't usually go hand in hand when it comes to political candidates.

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Field Marshal:

The lack of independents only applies to the primary voting results. The head-to-head match ups are derived from the 395 likely voters.

http://edisk.fandm.edu/FLI/keystone/pdf/keyjan10_1.pdf

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Farleftandproud:

That is a relief. I still can't understand why Obama supports Spector instead of simply staying out of the whole race and letting the voters decide. I have heard no political strategy thinks that nominating Spector is a good idea, and he might was well just let Toomey have the senate seat at this point.

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CUWriter:

Toomsday approaches!

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Stillow:

Toomsday, I love it!!

farleft - this is not the only poll showing Toomey beating both Dems...get used to it, cus this seat is going to Toomey.

What is wrong with you Dems? Why would you nominate specter over sestak? At least sestak would have a chance.............

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Farleftandproud:

I don't know why the PA Democrats would nominate spector. It is really bizarre.

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Field Marshal:

They don't know who Sestak is! When is the primary? I bet that poll closes when Sestak runs ads against Spector. Look at the approval/disapproval for Sestak 8/6. 14% of Dem respondents had even heard of him.

I'll throw this out now. Results of the primary will be Sestak loses by less than 5% to a win of 5%.

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Farleftandproud:

If Obama loses seats the way these polls are showing, and caves into the special interests, and his supporters, and others who wanted this health reform who supported Hillary, are heartbroken right now. This may only be 38 percent of the country, but that percentage has to remain vocal. Reversing don't ask don't tell would be a symbolic victory for civil rights, and insurance reform would be better than doing nothing. If Obama doesn't change these things a year from now, he'll get heckled by people in his own party at his next state of the Union. "How could you let this happen"? How could history repeat itself"? I believe if these things don't change our human rights record will be lower than many third world countries, and our debt will be so great, other nations will likely be declaring war on America. In most countries with conditions like we have now, there would be a uprising and a revolution, but Americans just except the status quo. Corporations are sacred and health insurance companies enjoy fleecing people. 10 years down the road, when the left has another chance to pass health reform, and complaining, don't say I didn't warn you for not acting now.

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Farleftandproud:

I am surprised that Sestak hasn't made himself better known. Recently I haven't been too impressed with the Democratic nominees in VA and Mass, but I am impressed with Sestak. If he doesn't win the nomination, I think he would be good for a cabinet post in foreign relations. He has experience in intelligence and is tough, yet he has a conscience. Obama could have a great presidency if we can catch the top Al Quada terrorists, and eventually move out most of our armed forces from the middle east. I think the future of American warfare with drones will be to save human lives with greater technology and better intelligence.

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Jason:

The Democratic party will fair better with Sestak. I believe in the end Sestak will probably win the primary. However, Sestak is not that well known all over the state. Sestak v. Toomey would be interesting! It would be close than what this poll suggests.

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Farleftandproud:

Toomey seems like he is careful with his words unlike George Allen in 2006 with his Maccaca statement about the Indian guy working on his opponents campaign, or even worse when Santorum compared two gay men to a man/dog relationship. That is disgusting; how could PA have ever elected that guy? Loose lips sink ships though.

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Farleftandproud:

It seems like Ohio and PA in the polls seem to always be anti-something and never be happy with their leaders. 4 years ago Taft had a low approval and now Strickland does. Over the years, I have noticed poll numbers Bush were low in both states seemed to be about 50/50 or worst; Ohio and PA were the first states Obama won where his approval dropped dramatically. It seems like they aren't happy with any politician.

Surprisingly, I was in Eastern PA north of Philly and near Harrisburgh as well and was impressed with all the federal projects of stimulus money. The signs on the highway were clearly marked that it was part of the recovery program. At least I can vouch for the fact I saw many men and women working hard, as well as roads and bridges being fixed. That is why I can't say the stimulus was a total failure.

Some people just don't want to see anything good about our government, and in general America is the most negative about their government, and less than half of it's elligable citizens vote. There is never a clear answer and only time will tell what ideas will win and what ones will be a failure.

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Cyril Washbrook:

Nate Silver has a good comment on this poll over at FiveThirtyEight.com. Specifically, Nate looks at the fact that (1) F&M has a likely voter proportion of less than 40%, which is way below what the turnout levels will actually be, and (2) there is an unusually high amount of ambivalence or indifference especially given that this is meant to be a likely voter screen.

http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/2010/01/arlen-specter-may-be-screwed-but-he.html

"I wish that more pollsters would disclose exactly what likely voter screens they are using. But whatever they're doing, Franklin & Marshall is not winding up with a sample that accurately reflects what turnout will actually look like in November -- their subsample seems to be less a "likely voter" population and more of a "highly enthusiastic" voter population. Clearly the Republicans have an enthusiasm advantage this cycle and clearly that could be enormously consequential for Democrats -- they shouldn't comfort themselves too much by looking at registered voter polls which, if the enthusiasm gap persists, will tend to overestimate their performance. But this one is probably going a little too far."

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