Tuesday, October 21, 2014

BOOM! Doug Ducey out front by a solid 6 in Arizona Governor's race

Developing... Stay tuned... 

From Eric Dondero: 

To be released later this afternoon... from Rasmussen. Cold Stream Creamery's CEO and a sometimes identified "libertarian" is now leading Democrat David DuVal by 6 points, 47% to 41%. 

Editor's note - I have to check with the LR decision desk. However, I think Cliff and I may just stick a fork in this one. (H/t - HHR)

Latest ad by Marilinda Garica - Republican for Congress, NH CD-2

From Eric Dondero: 

She's Millennial to the core. Gotta love that alternative rock soundtrack. Marilinda on immigration. 

Oh, and the latest poll released late yesterday has her up by 5.

NBC/WSJ Poll examines impact of third parties

by Clifford F. Thies

Third-party candidates are doing quite well in the polls this year. As to what this means regarding election day, we have long thought that support for third-parties represents latent support for the major party candidate representing an acceptable second choice. For lack of any better number, we think that the vote indicated in polls for Libertarian Party candidates will shrink by half with the shrinkage shifting to the Republican Party candidate. 

The recent NBC/Wall Street Journal poll, which includes Libertarian and Green party candidates in the Generic Congressional Ballot, illustrates our supposition. In this poll, likely voters were asked, "If you had the choice in your district, would you be more likely to vote for a (ROTATE:) Republican, Democratic, Libertarian or Green Party candidate for Congress? 9 percent answered Libertarian and 3 percent Green. The 3 percent favoring the Green Party candidate isn't nothing. But, the 9 percent favoring the Libertarian Party candidate is enormous. Clearly, if the United States had a European-style proportional representation system, the Libertarians would have the balance of power in our parliament, and could determine the outcome on practically every issue. On economic issues, we'd align with the American-style conservatives and forge the majority. 

On many personal liberties issues, such as massive spying on us by the NSA, we'd align with the American-style liberals and forge the majority. As it is, we have to try to win in the primaries of the Republican Party, often against e-Republicans as loathsome as Democrats in terms of corruption and voter fraud, as happened this year in Mississippi. But, when we do win in the Republican primary, we are usually able to out-perform because of our appeal to independent and swing voters. 

The NBC/Wall Street Journal poll asked those who replied Libertarian, Green or unsure, the following question, "But, if it came to just a choice between (ROTATE:) a Republican and a Democratic candidate for Congress, for whom would you vote?" 

In this case 9 percent shifted to the Republican and 6 percent to the Democrat, and the number saying not sure or its equivalent shrunk from 8 to 4 percent. On election day, whether the Libertarian or Green Party candidate is actually on the ballot, as a practical mater this second question is the reality voters face. A large number of voters vote strategically. By this we mean for their second choice candidate who has a chance of winning when their first choice candidate does not. 


Now, let's look at the most important races where the Libertarian vote may determine the outcome of the election. In Florida, the Libertarian Party candidate for Governor, Adrian Wyllie, has been averaging 9 percent in the polls that include him in the mix. The major party candidates - Rick Scott the Republican and Charlie Crist the Democrat - are running neck and neck, and in the low to mid 40s. (There actually is only a small number of undecideds in this race, when you take the Libertarian candidate into account.) 

We suspect that when the ballots are actually cast, Gov. Scott will be re-elected with a vote of something like 50 to 45 to 5 percent, due to strategic voting. 


In the Colorado Senate race, there is a strong independent in the race, Stephen Shogan, a neurosurgeon, whose combination of views puts him to the left of the political spectrum but who is also attracting Tea Party support being that he is an independent espousing some fiscally conservative positions. There is also a Libertarian. Polling results are very different depending on whether Shogan is included or not included. When he is included, he pulls a high single digit, and the Republican is far out in front. When he isn't included, the race is close. (When the Libertarian is included, he pulls a mid-sized single digit.) The truth is, Shogan will be on the ballot. But, we suspect his vote will drop off from what is indicated in the surveys that include him. We think the average of the polls, some of which include him and some of which don't, is kind of indicative of how this race will turn out. The average of the polls show the Republican to be slightly ahead. 


In the North Carolina Senate race, the Democrat, incumbent Kay Hagan, is ahead of the Republican, Thom Tillis, by something like 2 points. However, there is a Libertarian on the ballot who is drawing 6 percent in the polls that include him. A recent SurveyUSA poll perfectly illustrates how we think this race will turn out. In a question including the Libertarian, Hagan beats Tillis by 3 points, with the Libertarian drawing 7 percent. Then, in a follow-up question excluding the Libertarian, Tillis beats Hagan by 1 point. Because of the closeness of this race and the uncertainty of the third-party effect, we have this state on our list of toss-up states. 


Both the Senate and the Governor race in Georgia closely parallel the North Carolina Senate race except for one thing. In Georgia, you need 50 percent of the vote to win, otherwise there is a run-off. While we include the Georgia Senate race on our list of toss-up states, we suspect the Republicans will win these two races but possibly in a run-off. In the South Dakota Senate race, there are four significant candidates: the nominees of the Republican and the Democratic parties, a moderate Republican running as an independent, and a Tea Party candidate also running as an independent. 

With the three-way split of the Republican vote, the national Democrats perceive an opportunity and have recently placed a million dollar ad buy in this state. Although the Republican has never trailed in the polls, his lead has fallen from double-digits to a mid-sized single-digit. To shore up the Republican's position, the national Republicans have also ponied up a million dollar for ads. Because of strategic voting, we suspect that the Tea Party independent candidate's support in the polls represents a reservoir of strength for the Republican.   (Photo - Libertarian candidate for US Senate Amanda Swafford.)


For completeness, we'll briefly comment on the Connecticut Governor race which includes a significant independent, Joe Visconiti. In the past two Quinnipiac polls, he pulled an average of 8 percent. Visconti is running as a moderate. As a result, there would be no clear acceptable second choice between the Republican and the Democrat. Accordingly, we are not surprised that the two Quinnipiac polls that both featuring questions including him and excluding him, find that the margin between the major party candidates isn't much affected.

Brazil October 26th Run-off: DEAD HEAT!!!

by Clifford F. Thies 

The four most recent post-first round polls all indicate the same thing: the run-off is a dead heat. Averaging across these polls, the challenger, center-right political Aécio Neves has 44.6% and the incumbent, leftist President Dilma Rousseff 44.1%. The difference cannot be considered significant. Six percent say they will abstain, and 4 percent say they have not yet made up their mind. 

Neves' substantial improvement (11 points) from round 1, mostly reflects his endorsement by the person who third, Marina Silva, with 21 percent of the vote. Neves has embraced much of her platform. Rousseff has only made a small improvement (2.5 points) from round 1. 

Editor's comment - What a website 'eh? Two weeks out of the most important elections in our lifetimes here in the United States, and we still find time to cover the all-important Brazilian elections. Best libertarian political site on the web... guaranteed!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Rick Perry for Will Hurd

From Eric Dondero: 

Texas CD-23 is the only hotly contested congressional race in the Lone Star State. The District includes the border region from Del Rio to the outskirts of El Paso (in purple). The incumbent Democrat Rep. is Pete Gallegos. 

All the major poll watchers list this race as a complete toss-up. 

From the ElPasoTimes,

US Rep. Pete Gallego, Republican Will Hurd locked in tight Lower Valley race

The congressional race to represent a portion of the Lower Valley, and a large part of West Texas, is so close that the experts don't agree who will win. 
Early voting starts Monday and runs through Oct. 31. Election Day is Nov. 4.
The contest to represent Congressional District 23 pits freshman Democratic U.S. Rep. Pete Gallego against Republican challenger Will Hurd. The seat flipped between the two parties in the 2010 and 2012 elections. 
It's the only competitive congressional race in Texas and one of only a handful nationwide.
If Hurd wins he will be the second African-American Rep. to be elected to Congress in 2014 joining Mia Love from Utah.

US enacts travel ban... for American soldiers

by Clifford F. Thies

U.S. military personnel in Liberia who contract ebola will be quarantined in that country until they recover or are dead, said the head of the joint forces command for Liberia, a two-star general. But, as for non-Americans from three west African countries with ebola epidemics, the Obama administration insists that it would be counter-productive to have a travel ban. 

And, of course, civilians associated with the World Health Organization will continue to have first priority to the small number of hyper-biohazard units that we have in this country. BTW is the news media even reporting how many American soldiers are die in Afghanistan any longer? (48 so far this year. This figure includes deaths out of country due to wounds or other injuries in country, but it only includes suicides committed in country.) 

Source: C-SPAN

Tom Cotton expands lead over Pryor in Arkansas to 9 points

Just 1 point shy of the magic 50% 

From Eric Dondero: 

There was a time just a few weeks ago, when the Cotton vs. Pryor race was a nail-biter. My, my have times changed. The Scott Brown vs. Jeanne Shaheen, and Thom Tillis vs. Kay Hagan are the new hotly contested races for US Senate. 

Not quite time to stick the proverbial fork in this hawg, but awfully darn close. 

From KUAR public radio - Arkansas, "New Poll Suggests Cotton Expanding Lead In Race For Senate":
Q. In the race for U.S. Senate, the candidates are Democrat Senator Mark Pryor, Republican Congressman Tom Cotton, Libertarian Nathan LaFrance, and Green Party Candidate Mark Swaney. If the election for U.S. Senate were today, which candidate would you support? 
  • 40.5% Democrat Senator Mark Pryor 
  • 49% Republican Congressman Tom Cotton 
  • 2.5% Libertarian Nathan LaFrance 
  • 2% Green candidate Mark Swaney 
  • 6% Undecided 
 In a late July TB&P-Hendrix poll, Cotton held a two-point lead over Pryor 44-42%

Wendy Davis Tweets out: Is Greg Abbott, married to a Latina, opposed to bi-racial marriage?

Cecilia Abbott 100% Mexican-American
Just Breaking...
Editor's comment - Ahh, boy. She's going to get absolutely creamed on this one.