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NJ-6: Monmouth University poll shows Pallone losing ground to Little

October 26, 2010 Leave a comment

Several weeks ago, RCP moved this race from Safe Dem to Lean Dem. 

Earlier today, Jim Geraghty wrote that Charlie Cook has now moved New Jersey’s 6th CD to Likely Dem as well.

Today, the Asbury Park Press and the Star Ledger are both reporting that the latest Monmouth University poll shows Anna Little gaining ground, narrowing Frank Pallone’s lead from twelve to seven points.  The APP writes:

In the Monmouth County portion of the district, Little leads Pallone 52 to 45 percent. Three weeks ago, Pallone led Little by 49 to 47 percent. Pallone continues to hold a sizable 58 to 37 percent lead in the other parts of the district, including urban strongholds in Middlesex and Union counties.

 Pallone’s job performance approval rating among likely voters is 45 percent, virtually the same as three weeks ago, when it was 46 percent. His job performance disapproval rating has gone up from 36 to 46 percent, however.

 More voters are now aware of Little: only 31 percent said they have no opinion of her, down from 45 percent three weeks ago.

Last week I wrote:

[…] worth noting is that 45% of respondents said they had “no opinion” of Anna Little.  In other words, voters in the district really don’t know much about her.  Voters here feel they don’t really have much of a choice, that it’s just automatic for Pallone to win.  That’s not good for democracy.  […]

Turnout will be key to turn this district red, plain and simple.  With a 12 point deficit and two weeks left, the campaign will certainly have its work cut out for it.  It will be difficult, but not impossible. 

This is what happens when voters begin to realize that they have a choice, and they have the power to break the vise grip of lethargic incumbency.  This is what GOTV efforts are all about.  In a matter of weeks, support at the grassroots level in the Little campaign has taken a virtually unknown candidate to within striking distance of a 22-year incumbent Democrat, comfortable in his blue district.

Speaking as a Mets fan, all I can say is: you gotta believe!

UPDATE.  It appears that the sample used in the Monmouth University poll might be skewing what’s really going on in NJ-6:

The poll […] could underestimate Little’s performance. The Monmouth University poll’s sample was 40 percent Democrats, 22 percent Republicans and 38 percent Independents. […]

In 2006 the Republican sample was 28 percent (a depressed year for Republicans nation wide, but especially dower in the North East) and the independent Sample was 31 percent. In 2008 the Republican sample was 33 percent and the independent sample was 38 percent.

It is fairly dubious assertion that this year will yield fewer Republicans at the polls than even 2006. It is even more suspicious that 38 percent of the Monmouth University poll’s sample is 38 percent; this independent sample outperforms their best year by 7 points. For a particularly good Republican year, when both the GOP and Democratic bases were engaged, 2004 is a decent place to start.
 
If you adjust the sample of 647 likely voters (257 Democrats, 141 Republican and 249 Independents) to reflect the exit polls from 2004, (253 Democrats, 201 Republicans and 194 Independents) then the race becomes 51 to 49 percent for Pallone. This is a minor adjustment from Monmouth University’s findings for Pallone but a major boost for Little. It also puts this race within the margin of error for most pollsters.
 
Stay tuned…

 

NJ-6: Anna Little closing in on Pallone?

October 19, 2010 1 comment

Take it for what it’s worth, but a National Research poll is giving Anna Little’s campaign some juice:

Gov. Chris Christie campaigned with Tea Party-endorsed 6th District challenger Anna Little last night in Piscataway and intends to campaign again with her later this week. Christie has some inside intel on the race from his favorite pollster.

Republican numbers cruncher Adam Geller of National Research, Inc. shows Republican challenger Little with a shot to win in her challenge of a vulnerable U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone (D-Long Branch).

Commissioned by the Little campaign, Geller puts Pallone ahead of Little by one point, 44-43%, in a survey Geller conducted from Oct. 5-6.

I’m too ignorant to figure out how much weight to give that poll.  I mean really, Frank Pallone.  Up by only 1 point? 

Jim Geraghty cautions:

This is a D+8 district, and Pallone usually wins by wide margins — with 67 percent in 2008, 69 percent in 2006, 67 percent in 2004, 66 percent in 2002. One of the reasons I had never put this race terribly high on my list of competitive contests is Pallone’s gargantuan financial advantage. As of September 30, he has more than $4.2 million cash on hand (a side effect of his interest in running statewide for a long while) while Little’s financial resources align with her surname, a little over $109,000 cash on hand as of October 13.

A poll like this one, commissioned by Little, might get Pallone to dip into his considerable cash reserves to ensure his traditional advantage. (After Christie carried his district, Pallone would be a fool to take his reelection for granted.) But if Pallone really is at 35 percent in his job-approval rating, as the Little poll suggests, then perhaps all the money in the world can’t persuade his constituents to keep him.

I stick by my initial take on this race–it will be tough, but not impossible.  If Little could pull this off, it would be a coup of ginormous proportions. 

(H/T: Ace)

NJ-6: Governor Christie speech for Anna Little (VIDEO)

October 18, 2010 Leave a comment

Chris Christie’s speech at yesterday’s campaign rally for the Little campaign are available on YouTube in two separate videos.

Here’s the first part, which includes the portion from the clip that I posted yesterday:

Part two is important as the Governor implores the grassroots to remain active and most importantly, to get out and vote:

My original post on the rally is here.

Anna Little for Congress

NJ-6: Governor Christie stumps for Anna Little

October 17, 2010 6 comments

The Governor made an appearance at Anna Little’s campaign rally in Piscataway earlier today, before her debate with entrenched liberal incumbent, the 22-year congressman, Frank “I helped write Obamacare” Pallone. 

Christie came out to introduce Little to the crowd and gave a classic Christie speech in support of the candidate.  I caught some of his speech on my iPhone:

Say what you want about Christie, and as I’ve noted on this blog before, I wasn’t a fan before the 2009 election.  But seeing what he’s done in less than a year, makes you proud to be conservative from New Jersey.  It’s a relief to hear a Republican not apologize for being conservative.

Once Christie entered the hall, the place went nuts.  I took some photos:

 Tea Party-approved:

Look at that glare:

Here is the Governor telling us all to just STFU and vote on November 2nd:

Another shot:

The place was SRO, but I got there early and got a good spot before the place filled up.  Notice the racist “Don’t Tread On Me” flag.  This is New Jersey for pete’s sake, it’s happening all over:

More “afraid and confused” racists voters at the rally:

This sign got the Governor’s attention and pointed it out to the crowd:

Here’s my take on this race.   New Jersey’s 6th District is historically a deep blue Democrat distrcit running northwest from Asbury Park in Monmouth County on the coast, into parts of Middlesex County, and President Obama won the district easily by a margin of 61-39.  Pallone has been representing the district since George H. W. Bush was first elected President, a full eleven terms. 

The latest polling has Pallone winning by 12 points and RCP recently moved the district from Safe Dem to Likely Dem.   The problem for Pallone is that 12 points is less than half of the 30+ point advantage he usually gets at reelection:

“A 12 point lead may look comfortable, but not when you consider the fact that Pallone regularly wins reelection by more than 30 points,” Patrick Murray, director of the Monmouth University Polling Institute, said. “District demographics are the key to this race. Little does well in the independent-minded parts of the district. The question is whether it will be enough to overcome the built-in Democratic advantage here.”

Look at the last three election cycles for Pallone:

2008: Pallone (D) 67%, McLeod  (R) 32%

2006: Pallone (D) 69%, Bellew (R) 30%

2004: Pallone (D) 67%, Fernandez (R) 31%

If you look at the most recent Monmouth University poll (PDF), you’ll find that Republicans are definitely not very popular in the district.  But also worth noting is that 45% of respondents said they had “no opinion” of Anna Little.  In other words, voters in the district really don’t know much about her.  Voters here feel they don’t really have much of a choice, that it’s just automatic for Pallone to win.  That’s not good for democracy.

The Little campaign is really energized about what they’re doing.  Over the past few months, and few weeks especially, I’ve seen supporters all over the district, lawn signs are all over, even in the bluest of neighborhoods, they’ve been at  local fall festivals, etc.  I overheard one of Little’s campaign workers talk to some attendees at the rally who were obviously undecided, and he mentioned that at recent event where both candidates were present, about 106 Little supporters showed up versus 10 for Pallone.  Take that for what it’s worth.

Turnout will be key to turn this district red, plain and simple.  With a 12 point deficit and two weeks left, the campaign will certainly have its work cut out for it.  It will be difficult, but not impossible. 

Time is of the essence, so if you’re so inclined, throw the campaign a few shekels. 

Anna Little for Congress