A new Quinnipiac poll shows expanded offshore oil drilling and Arizona’s strict new immigration law garnering majority support among the American public. And it’s not just coming from the right.
t was a week of mixed news for Republicans, especially in the polls conducted by Rasmussen Reports. The independent polling group, which uses auto-dialing surveys instead of live surveys -- and is thus able to crank out lots of data -- had the first poll showing Rep. Joe Sestak (D-Penn.) leapfrogging Pat Toomey in Pennsylvania's U.S. Senate race, and a poll showing Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal mostly weathering the storm over his Vietnam service scandal.
The GOP's strength comes without any kind of surge in its popularity. The Democrats have a 37-42 positive-negative rating; the GOP has a 30-42 rating. The tea party, as we've seen in other polls, looks better because of a lower negative rating -- overall it's 31-30. (Interestingly, the lowest recorded positive/negative rating for Democrats in the poll came in July 2006, five months before the party won Congress.) And while I see very, very little evidence of tea party splinter candidates hurting the GOP, there's some hunger for it.
With only 22 out of 650 seats left to count, the Liberal Democrats have won 53 seats -- down slightly from 2005. Their overall vote percentage (a flawed number in these elections because so many other parties get votes in Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland) is up only 0.8 points. The Conservative Party has, as many thought they would before last month, grabbed a swing vote that hadn't trusted the party until it made some left-leaning reforms over the past five years. This isn't an error on the scale of the ones Penn made in the 2008 campaign, but it's one anyone could have predicted.
movement is based on." Only 28 percent of voters say it's "racial prejudice against Obama." The biggest majority, 61 percent, say it's "distrust of government in general." That's not surprising, as 69 percent of all voters -- the highest number since 1996 -- pronounce themselves dissatisfied with how the federal government works.
My other favorite result? Overall, 38 percent of Americans view "libertarian" favorably to 37 who view it unfavorably. Democrats (39-37) and independents (44-32) view the term most favorably, while Republicans view it negatively by a 13-point (31-44) margin.