Now even I agree it's a toss-up, but still (slightly) favor Coakley

by: Chris Bowers

Mon Jan 18, 2010 at 00:20


Here is the new polling chart for the Massachusetts special election:

Massachusetts special election polling, 2010
Pollster Poll Mid-date Coakley Brown
PPP Jan 16 46 51
InsideMedford Jan 15 41 51
Black Rock Jan 14 39 54
ARG Jan 13 45 48
Research 2000 Jan 13 49 41
Suffolk Jan 12 46 50
Rasmussen Jan 11 49 47
Mellman Jan 09 50 36
PPP Jan 08 47 48
UNH Jan 04 53 36
Rasmussen Jan 04 50 41
Mean Coakley +1.1 46.82 45.73
Based on a study I conducted of the 143 closet, statewide general elections from 2004-2009, I have been making some bold predictions in the Massachusetts Senate race of late.  Even though virtually every other election forecaster has moved this campaign to "toss-up" or "lean Brown" arguing that it is still "lean Coakley."

According to that study, Coakley would still have a 67% chance to win.  This is because the final, 15-polling average erred by at least 1.09% in 94 of the 143 elections in the study, and since there are equal chances the polls could be wrong in favor of either candidate.  Given how few elections ever come so close to even odds, that is close enough for me to describe the election as a "toss-up."

However, this is a special election, not a general election.  Even though some local election officials are seeing signs that turnout will be very high, perhaps it is best not to apply a general election study to this campaign, but instead to use a study of primary and special election results.  As such, today I looked at the 37 closest (final polling margin within 18.50%) Presidential primaries in 2008, along with the two general, House special elections in 2009.  The study compared Pollster.com's final estimates for those 39 campaigns with the simple polling mean of the last-15 days of those campaigns.  Here are the results:

Primary and special election error, 39 campaigns
Pollster.com Simple 15-day
Mean error 7.03 6.41
Median error 5.76 4.80
Closest 18 20
Two things jump out from this chart.  First, the simple, 15-day polling mean again proved slightly more accurate.  Second, the error rate from both methods is catastrophic--more150% the error for general elections.

If this election is more akin to a Presidential primary and a special election for the U.S. House, then Coakley's chances of winning are 56% in my methodology (which is extremely close to Nate Silver's 57% estimate), and only 12% according to Pollster.com's current trendline (Brown +7.9%).  That is a clear toss-up on my end, and a strong lean toward Brown at Pollster.com.

Next, I took the comparison a step further  Looking only at the 13 campaigns for which Pollster.com used its ''Loess' iterative locally weighted least squares regression" (which it only does with campaigns with eight or more polls), and where Pollster.com differed from the 15-day, simple mean by 2.1% or more, I ran some more numbers:

Primary and special election error, 13 late trending campaigns
Pollster.com Simple 15-day
Mean error 7.46 8.38
Median error 7.36 6.46
Closest 8 5
These 13 cases compare apparent late-trending campaigns.  These are important, because my 15-day simple methodology should miss the late trends (because I weight older polls more heavily) while the more sensitive, Loess regression should better pick up the trend.  Although the error rate for both methods is terrible, although there are few cases, and although the simple, 15-day mean does better in terms of median error, the Loess regression still does a slightly better job overall of predicting the final results.  In 8 out of 13 cases, putting more weight on later polls through a regression method was more accurate.

Now, it should be noted that there are a couple of famous cases where the simple 15-day mean accurately predicted that an apparent, massive late trend was overstated: the 2008 New Hampshire Democratic primary, and the 2009 New York 23rd special election.  In both cases, which happen to be the two most prominent of the 13 in the final "study," the simple 15-day mean picked up a much smaller amount of movement toward Barack Obama and Doug Hoffman respectively.  It still predicted the wrong winners (just like everyone else), but the elections were predicted to be very close and the eventual error rate was less than catastrophic.

Add it all up, and the campaign is, from a Democratic perspective, a toss-up at best.  My gut, and my research, tells me that it won't be a runaway Scott Brown victory, ala the Pollster.com trendline.  If I were to go out on a limb without any hard data, I would drop the Pajamas Media poll, and weight the pre-January 12th polls at only 85% of their value.  That shows Coakley by 2.3%.  If for no other reason, I like that as a prediction (barring more polls), because it still allows me to be contradictory with everyone else.  As an election forecaster, when you are lacking a definitive conclusion, it is best to go against the herd.  There is just more of an upside to being right in those cases.

However, even I can't deny that the numbers are improving for Brown seemingly everyday, and that he has a good chance of winning right now.

Chris Bowers :: Now even I agree it's a toss-up, but still (slightly) favor Coakley

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If Massachusetts citizens want to (4.00 / 1)
f*ck themselves so be it.

Extraordinary progressive star in the making

F*ck everyone really... (4.00 / 2)


[ Parent ]
If you don't get it (0.00 / 0)
don't reply! No really.

Extraordinary progressive star in the making

[ Parent ]
It won't change a thing for MA residents (4.00 / 2)
Average intelligence of Massachusetts residents is, well, way above the rest of us. They know what they're doing.

Not electing Coakley now gives (Democratic/Independent) voters in Massachusetts a much better chance to replace Brown in three years with a (Democratic/Independent) candidate that won't be an Obama puppet. They're right and better citizens than those that insist they must vote for a candidate now just to please Obama and his supporters.

Obama has betrayed Massachusetts. He's betrayed the country. They know it; and they're unwilling to provide him with a puppet.

That's how democracy is supposed to work.


[ Parent ]
I don't care about pleasing Obama (4.00 / 4)
He won't be getting a second vote out of me come 2012. This isn't about him anyway. If people elect brown now, he possibly could get re-elected. Bush received 2 terms didn't he?! However, why put up with a repube for 3 years when you don't have to? There's a lot shitstain brown can do in 3 years. Ted will be rolling in his grave.  

Extraordinary progressive star in the making

[ Parent ]
I get your concern... (4.00 / 4)
...but Bush never won in Massachusetts. I can't speak for the Massachusetts electorate except to speculate that maybe they feel the same as I do; that Obama and the supermajority Democratic congress has betrayed their mandate. What else can a voter do to express their anger at such a betrayal except to vote against the party in power? Voting them out of office is how democracy works.

Obama and the supermajority Democratic congress have failed to deliver any meaningful change to average Americans. Banksters that intentionally ruined our lives are rewarded and Obama does nothing. The health care "reform" bill is financed on the backs of those of us least able to afford it. 2009 was the second hottest year on record and Obama and a supermajority Democratic congress dither, dawdle, delay as if the future weren't in the balance....

Why shouldn't voters in Massachusetts be outraged? Voting against Obama and the supermajority Democrats in congress isn't the only thing we can do, it's the least we can do if we give a damn.

We're past questioning Democratic motives. All we have to do is look at Democratic results; and there's not much to see.


[ Parent ]
Are you confused? (4.00 / 1)
"Obama and the supermajority Democratic congress have failed to deliver any meaningful change to average Americans."
So voting a corrupt repube in is the better option? One who admittedly will stop health care reform? Republican Senator.....! Aren't you tired of hearing those words?

Don't blame Coakley for Obama's failures. You sound like you're on the wrong website. Anyway, it's too late for this shit.

Extraordinary progressive star in the making


[ Parent ]
Your own analysis should cause some soul-searching, (0.00 / 0)
some humility.


voting a corrupt repube in is the better option

When people hate "your side" so much that they are willing to hurt themselves to hurt you, it's time for some soul-searching, some humility.

Do you know what the GOP did after Americans elected a black man named Hussein 7 years into the "War on Terror"?

They got humble.

They said, "you know, maybe we shouldn't have spit on the Ron Paul people".

They then embarked on a campaign to draw them back into the GOP fold.

What did the left and the "Center-left" do?

Spit on the Ron Paul people.

It's funny that all the poll numbers reflect this, but the atmosphere of arrogance is leading to ANY CONCLUSION BUT THAT!

Humility?


[ Parent ]
You didn't pay attention (0.00 / 1)
to what I wrote idiot.

Extraordinary progressive star in the making

[ Parent ]
you've either (0.00 / 0)
had too much coffee or haven't had your cup of Joe.


[ Parent ]
Wrong website? (0.00 / 0)
You sound like you're on the wrong website.

I take serious objection to this comment.  If you've been following this site for a few years, you'd know that this kind of discussion has been here from the gitgo.

This is a not-too-veiled suggestion about who belongs here and who doesn't.  Being a loyal Democrat has never been a requirement.  You are completely out of line.

Full Court Press!  http://www.openleft.com/showDi...


[ Parent ]
Are you policing this website? (0.00 / 0)
You gonna keep me in line? I didn't tell the guy to leave this site. Even if I did, I'll say whatever the hell I want. If you aren't familiar with me, get used to it.

Extraordinary progressive star in the making

[ Parent ]
Did I say you couldn't? (0.00 / 0)
A mite touchy, I think.

Full Court Press!  http://www.openleft.com/showDi...

[ Parent ]
I wouldn't vote for a Republican (0.00 / 0)
I just have other things to do, like washing my hair.

One who admittedly will stop health care reform?

To be more accurate, he would stop the horrid health care bill now in Congress.  That's the good news.

Full Court Press!  http://www.openleft.com/showDi...


[ Parent ]
Huh? (0.00 / 0)
Democrats betrayed their mandate for progressive action, so best to punish them by voting in conservatives who will make progressive action that much more difficult.  No, that's not how Democracy is supposed to work.

Theoretically, you vote for the person who you think will best represent your interests, and assuming your interests are on the liberal/progressive side of the scale, that means voting for the person that comes closest to you.

Perhaps what you describe is something that actually happens, but it sure as hell isn't helpful to their interests.


[ Parent ]
No (4.00 / 4)
Who are you to decide what's helpful to their interest? Maybe not everyone is so gungho about the healthcare bill and in that case voting for Brown is helpful to their interests. This isn't Brown going around misleading people about what he intends to do. He plainly speaks that hes going to stop the healthcare bill and guess what, there are people who will go for that. When someone says "I'm going to do this" and in all likelyhood, hes going to do this and people vote for him/her, thats democracy.

[ Parent ]
Healthcare is one issue... (0.00 / 0)
And if progressives/liberals are voting for him because the bill isn't liberal enough, then, well, yeah, I'd say they're doing it wrong.

And the post I responded to wasn't talking about Health Care, but just the fact that people are pissed about what Democrats did with their mandate... If people are basically voting much more conservatively because they're pissed at Democrats for not being liberal enough, that's a revenge vote, rather than a vote based on your interests.


[ Parent ]
And what's wrong with revenge? (0.00 / 0)
Again, recall AFL head Samuel Gompers, who used to have a policy that labor should "reward its friends and punish its enemies" regardless of party affiliation.

You don't know what my "interests" are.  

Full Court Press!  http://www.openleft.com/showDi...


[ Parent ]
Fine.. (0.00 / 0)
If your interest is revenge, then great... I suppose that works. I don't think it's good policy, but that's pretty much my point.

[ Parent ]
It works. (0.00 / 0)
Begging doesn't.

Full Court Press!  http://www.openleft.com/showDi...

[ Parent ]
What's wrong with revenge? (0.00 / 0)
It doesn't get you anything but selfish satisfaction.  

[ Parent ]
No, it delivers a message (4.00 / 1)
If you tell a supposed ally they need to do something, but they betray you over and over, and all you do is say, "Please don't do it next time," they know they can keep kicking you in the head indefinitely.

If you kick them in the head, the next time you press them, there is some chance they may do something different.

4-year-olds know this.  Apparently the process of becoming a loyal Democrat is to undergo political lobotomy.

Full Court Press!  http://www.openleft.com/showDi...


[ Parent ]
Even if Coakley wins she'd be vulnerable.. (0.00 / 0)
Everyone assumes that she would be a lock to win the 2012 primary, and I tell you she'd be a dead woman walking for nearly losing Teddy's seat!

I agree with you that many folks in Massachussetts are making that calculation, but it's a bad one 'cos her loss has significant ramifications beyond Obama or even the dems.

REID: Voting against us was never part of our arrangement!
SPECTER: I am altering the deal! Pray I don't alter it any further!
REID: This deal keeps getting worse all the time!


[ Parent ]
Actually, (0.00 / 0)
in democracy we ought to be able to vote for the party of our choice and that party should have power in proportion to the number of votes it received, but I digress...

Contemporary America is an example of democracy not working.


[ Parent ]
The Electorate. (4.00 / 1)
   The PPP poll sample had only a 44% approval rating of Obama.  51% of the sample were between the ages of 45-64.  If that is the electorate that shows up to vote on Tuesday, then I am sure Coakley will lose.  I am very interested to see if the proposed dearth of Democratic voter excitement is overstated by these polls or not.  Tuesday will tell.

Funny how subjective feelings ... (4.00 / 8)
...move numbers.

I know that's not the pollsters' or the analysts' business. I think this race was lost last summer when Obama gave Baucus the go-ahead to delay health care reform over the August recess so they could beat back the dirty fucking hippies. Pity they didn't see that a lot of us dirty fucking hippies live and vote (or not) in Massachusetts. Well, across the country actually, but you won't be able to calculate those results until next October.

And then, it will be too late.


Massachusetts hippies haven't forgotten Coakley's (4.00 / 2)
efforts to defeat the marijuana decrim initiative (which pulled 65%) nor her attempts to circumvent it after it passed. Those votes won't go to brown, but to Kennedy. you can't expect someone to vote fore you after you've tried to put them in prison.



This is a Test of the Emergency Free Speech System. This is only a Test. In an actual Free Speech Emergency, I'll be locked up.


[ Parent ]
It was actually lost when (4.00 / 1)
Obama chose Wall Street over Main Street.

HCR will always be a subordinate issue to jobs.

After all, the best social program is a good job.

If we're still struggling with Politics 101, it's going to be a long decade.


[ Parent ]
Contest the hell out of it If it's close (4.00 / 1)
That's what I hope the Democrats will do, like the Republicans did with Franken. That's assuming that the current Senator stays until the new one is certified or whatever.

Then maybe an improved? HCR can be passed.

Jeff Wegerson


And dig a deeper grave? (4.00 / 1)
How's about getting Bernie Sanders, Alan Grayson, and Ron Paul in the Oval Office for a signing of HR 1207, "Audit the Fed"?

I know I'm the "bad guy", but somebody has to say it:

90+% of left bloggers are living in fantasy land.

It's time to do some soul-searching.

It's time to go hang out with the proles.

You know, the people for whom you want make-work jobs and free health care?

They aren't what you think they are.

They are rabid, desperate kooks.

Unless you learn how to reach them in their own idiom, they will be easy prey to a populist right message that blames blacks, jews, foreigners, gays, intellectuals, etc.

These people were so desperate that they were willing to take a chance on a black man named Hussein.

There was a window of opportunity to hammer the wrongdoers and perhaps change the entire post-War dynamic of American politics.

Instead, Obama did what all good servants did and served his masters.

Now it's harvest time.


[ Parent ]
I don't disagree with you. (0.00 / 0)
I was concern trolling for the Democrats.

I have just been reading James McCommons book "Waiting on a Train", which is informative if not radical. Any way, he was quoting someone about the history of Amtrak who ways saying that Amtrak was stuck in a never win situation of being dependent on the private railroad corporations for basically train slots and that sometimes (Union Pacific) these corporations can be actually hostile and intentionally slow down Amtrak trains. And then the quoted person said Amtrak was neither fish nor fowl just foul. Something along those lines and it got me to thinking about Obamacare. Whenever you try to create a so-called public/private enterprise it is going to be fucked (pardon my French) especially if the private part is holding way too many cards. So yes I agree with you.

But that's the world we live in at the moment. I'm glad Amtrak exists as bad as it is. Some parts are actually good. I expect that that Obamacare will have some "good" parts as well. But on the whole I expect it to be a mess like on the whole Amtrak is a mess. But then too I expect I will be glad that it is there. Supposedly Massachusettins don't like  their system but would not vote to get rid of it. Bad as Amtrak is I wouldn't vote to get rid of it either. It is forming the basis for and network connectivity for regional high speed rail (which might end up a fucked system too if there is too much corporate involvement. But that's another story.)

But to speak to your main points. I once owned a six-flat with two other guys in a neighborhood that was being burned down one building at a time for the insurance money. A slum basically. It's since been gentrified (we were a start of that process) but at the time it was dicey place to live with lots of proletariat and lumpen (to coin two phrases.) So across the street there was a building that was in the process of being abandoned by the owner. Anyway my partners and I had occasion to attempt to help out the residents who were still in the building with things like fixing the locks to secure their spaces and let me tell you some of the apartments they were living in were gross with filth and smell. But we did what we could. And just to be clear here these where white people like me.

My office is now in a slum. The grocery out my window is run by a Palestinian who has all the goods behind bars inside the store, he hands you what you ask for, as well as on the outside windows and door. On the street where I park my nice car and where when I am sometimes cleaning some of the trash I find these little miniature zip-lock baggies an inch square. For a while in August just before school started I assume there was a mother and her young kids who would sit on a milk crate on the sidewalk for hours. Of course I am asked for money regularly. The company used to have a fenced-in parking lot big enough for the women workers and management to park in. But we needed that space so now the whole company has to park on the street (even the president/owner). Some of the Teamsters got together to chip in $3 a week each to pay a neighborhood resident to watch their cars. Since I was parking around the corner from the rest it didn't really help me. I chipped in but told the guy to not worry about my car because he really could pay a lot of attention to it where it was.

So during all this time I was getting hit up for protection money for my car. Now my habit is to sometimes give pan-handlers money and sometimes not. How do I decide? Well it's inconsistent but basically I do not like to give money in situations where I am constantly exposed to the potential of being asked. Like outside the drug store a block away from my very nice two-flat house in my very nice city neighborhood. Now sometimes I do give money on the business street where the drugstore is but not (well not often) right in front of the store. The women of the neighborhood (many anyway) get scared and uncomfortable by pan-handlers. That's my excuse anyway. So I don't want to "encourage" them right in front of the store. It they are walking and I am walking then yes the likelihood that I'll give them money goes up.

So I want to give money to the folks around my car but there are instantly three issues. One is that they are at a spot where I regularly appear twice a day. Two is that there are potentially a lot of folks that could be asking. And then there is three the potential to be exposed to a protection racket.

So what's my point. My point is that I really, really am not prepared to hang out with the proles. Well, wait, I guess that I do actually a little hang out with them. I mean like the women who work where I work and now have to park in the street. I sort-of hang out with them as well as the guys that work here that have been parking out there all along or who take the public transit. Which I take when my car is in the shop.

But I think when you say "hang out with the proles" that you mean "try organizing" them or "try setting them up" to follow a progressive populist leader rather than an authoritarian one when their hope turns sour. And I'm agree with you there. But you know what, I'm too old to pull that off. But maybe you're not and if so I say go for it and keep trying to bring us OpenLeftists along with you.

Sorry I guess I rambled a bit. Forgive any writing errors as I don't have time to reread this for errors.

Jeff Wegerson


[ Parent ]
Just wait until Rasmussen comes out tomorrow... (4.00 / 1)
That's probably going to be ugly...

REID: Voting against us was never part of our arrangement!
SPECTER: I am altering the deal! Pray I don't alter it any further!
REID: This deal keeps getting worse all the time!


Kos/R2k has a poll out too... (0.00 / 0)
But trend looks real bad...  I'm guessing R2k won't look much better, or if it does will still show the same trend towards Brown.

At this point we basically have to just hope the polling is wrong about the trend and the Democratic electorate just gets out there.


[ Parent ]
Well, countervailing that trend.... (0.00 / 0)
...is that PPP said that there were more Democrats interested no Sunday and if the increase keeps up, she can win...

Marc Ambinder tweeted that Coakley's internals are now dead even and also says that the White House does feel that she can win, it's not just bluster.

REID: Voting against us was never part of our arrangement!
SPECTER: I am altering the deal! Pray I don't alter it any further!
REID: This deal keeps getting worse all the time!


[ Parent ]
Trends over-emphasized (4.00 / 1)
One thing my research has shown is that trends are WAAAYYYY over-emphasized by poll watchers. Event he best forecasters emphasize them too much.

I don't know who will win for sure, but I do know that Scott Brown won't win by 8%, as per the sensitive trend on Pollster.com. The odds of that are very low.


[ Parent ]
I don't think he'll win by 8%... (4.00 / 2)
But 2-3%, really just above seriously contestable range, seems quite fathomable to me now.

Quite ridiculous that it's come to this in MA of all places. I suppose this could've probably been said long ago considering the crappiness of our leadership, but so much for the "progressive window".


[ Parent ]
There are some things money can't buy... (4.00 / 2)
and one of them is Coakley calling Curt Schilling a Yankees fan. It don't matter what the polls say. Get the fork ready, she's done.

I think people are over-emphasizing that a lot (4.00 / 1)
There are other, much larger factors at work here. Minutia like that rarely makes the difference.

[ Parent ]
Kerry in Wisconsin summer '04, 5% drop (4.00 / 2)
in a day when he reffered to "Lambert Field." Recoivered when he brought a round of Leininkugels for the house in Mt. Horeb.



This is a Test of the Emergency Free Speech System. This is only a Test. In an actual Free Speech Emergency, I'll be locked up.


[ Parent ]
It does... (4.00 / 3)
...if it helps reinforce a larger frame, in this case that she's out of touch and disconnected from MA voters, and particularly when it's close to election day and people are focusing on making or firming up their decision.

Self-refuting Christine O'Donnell is proof monkeys are still evolving into humans

[ Parent ]
Probably are... (4.00 / 1)
But honestly, she made this race close and can't afford shit like this.  I don't think I'd give this as a reason for a loss (if it came to that), but it probably doesn't help.

[ Parent ]
I am sure this (4.00 / 1)
will ignite the argument that the reason for the loss, if it happens, was because Obama has governed too far to the right.

In this electorate, it will be hard to make that case.  53% of MASSACHUSETTS voters in the PPP say the Democratic Congress is too liberal, 14% say it is too conservative.  

Among Democrats the numbers are 25% say Congress is too liberal, 24% say it is too conservative, 50% about right.


Wait... (4.00 / 1)
Do you have the numbers backwards?  If 53% of MA voters say that the Democratic Congress is too liberal, that would seemingly give lots of ammo to The Village to talk about how horribly liberal Obama and the Democrats are.

And that being said, it hardly matters why Coakley loses (if she does)... The "CW" will be that Democrats have gone too far, which will likely kill anything even moderately "progressive" coming out of congress for, at minimum, 3 years (2012 elections), and likely longer. And that's not because they'd HAVE to, but given what we've seen from the Democrats with sweeping victories, what are the chances of seeing anything else?


[ Parent ]
I think there will be two arguments (4.00 / 4)
made if we lose:
1.  Democrats have moved too far left.  There is plenty ammo for that argument in the PPP poll.  By a whopping 57-11, "moderates" say the Democratic Congress is too liberal.

Those are devastating numbers, and we will need to think about them for a while.
2.  The contra argument to that finding will be twofold:
a.  Massachusetts was about firing up the base, and the passivity of the Democrats in dealing with the financial crisis and the move of the hcr Bill to the right depressed the base.
b.  Behind these numbers these is really nothing more than frustration about the economy.  When the economy turns, perceptions among independents will turn.

I will be honest: these numbers scare the hell out of me. They are the scariest numbers (we are talking about Massachusetts here) since at least '94, and maybe '84.  

Underlying them may be that conservatives have been able to make the following argument:
liberalism = bailouts
bailouts = economic disaster and lack of  accountability

If they succeed in selling that syllogism, the House and the Senate are gone, and the only thing that can save us is an economic recovery.  


[ Parent ]
Ok... I misread you... (4.00 / 1)
For some reason I read "left" instead of "right", probably because I just expected the general argument would be that Democrats have been too liberal.

I think basically the last couple things you said is probably more or less correct... The economy sucks, and Conservatives are taking advantage of it by selling bailouts and economic disaster as "liberal".  If the economy doesn't improve while Democrats are still in power, progressives are in deep shit.

Voters have short memories, and even though most still blame Bush for the economy (according to last ABC poll), it really doesn't matter as long as things are still bad.  If Republicans re-take power when the economy starts doing better, they will reap the rewards and take credit, and things will continue to go unfixed until the next implosion (which is already happening to some extent, though don't expect Republicans to make things any better)...

Of course, the Democrats, including Obama, certainly have some responsibility in this (*cough*Geithner*cough*), but things look pretty bad all around right now.


[ Parent ]
kos should sample the main objections to coakley (4.00 / 1)
in there next poal. Voter perceptions of liberal vs conservative are often meaningless when you look at issues.  I'll bet the main objection to Coakley is mandates.  That will derail the move right meme right away.

My blog  

[ Parent ]
I doubt it (4.00 / 1)
Most national polling shows the economy is far more important to people than hcr, and I don't think the mandates are what makes HCR by itself unpopular.  Hell, that is the same requirement that already exists in Massachusetts.

I think 2010 will be defined by two words: recovery and accountability.  If there is a recover, these numbers will turn in a hurry. If there is no recovery , people will demand accountability.  It is the lack of accountability in finance and in government that people bring up when I talk to them.  

At a very basic level, people think the whole thing has been unfair.  


[ Parent ]
mandates in massachusetts (0.00 / 0)
are not all that popular, and the mandate they have covers 350% the poverty line, as opposed to 150 if the national bill supplants the Massachusetts version.

My blog  

[ Parent ]
The subsidy covers 350% the poverty line (0.00 / 0)
so it doesn't assfuck the middle class like Obama's version.

My blog  

[ Parent ]
I didn't kne that (0.00 / 0)
thanks

[ Parent ]
This sample is more conservative than the MA.... (4.00 / 1)
...electorate as a whole.  Democrats are not telling pollsters that they are going to come out and vote.

I wish Jenson would post the comparison between registered voters and likely.  It would be intereszting to see the difference.

Jensen states right out that Coakley's problem is GOTV.  If she gets more democrats to get off the sofa, she wins.

REID: Voting against us was never part of our arrangement!
SPECTER: I am altering the deal! Pray I don't alter it any further!
REID: This deal keeps getting worse all the time!


[ Parent ]
Compare the PPP (4.00 / 2)
numbers against the exit poll in '06:

http://www-cgi.cnn.com/ELECTIO...

In 2006 it was 42% Democratic, 19% GOP and 39% Independent.  By ideology, it was 27% liberal, 23% Conservative, 50% Moderate.  

In 2008 it was 43% Democratic, 17% GOP, rest indeptendents. The 2008 electorate was more liberal (32% liberal, 21% Conservative, rest moderates).  The 2008 numbers, though, are hardly a guidepost for a special election.

In the PPP poll it is 39% Democratic, 17% GOP and 44% Independent.  The Democratic advantage in this race is nearly identical from '06 to this race:  23% in '06 and 22% in this race.It is slightly more conservative:  PPP has the electorate 23% Liberal, 54% Moderate, 22% Conservative (versus 27% liberal, 23% conservative).  

A good comparison is to look at these numbers versus the numbers for Patrick in 2006.  Patrick carried Democrats 85 to 9, while Coakley is winning them 77-19.  Patrick's net was +76 among Democrats, while Coakley's is only 58 (Obama won 88-11 among Democrats).  Still, given these economy I don't think Coakley's margin is all that bad.

But the real problem is with moderates and independents. Patrick won independents 55-36, Brown is winning them 64-32 (Obama won them 57-40).  Patrick won moderates 54-41, Obama won them 59-38, Brown is winning them 64-32.

If I look at the PPP numbers, the Democratic base looks pretty fired up for a special election.  No doubt the conservatives are even MORE fired up: but if Coakley  repeated Patrick's numbers among moderates she would win easily.

One ray of hope: PPP finds only an electorate of only 6% African Americans versus 9% in '06 and '08.  Maybe Obama can help boost that turnout....


[ Parent ]
Depressing analysis to be sure... n/t (0.00 / 0)


REID: Voting against us was never part of our arrangement!
SPECTER: I am altering the deal! Pray I don't alter it any further!
REID: This deal keeps getting worse all the time!


[ Parent ]
and (0.00 / 0)
anyone who's seen a Brown commercial can tell they're gonna appeal to a lot of regular folks.

I also don't see how Obama spurs AA turnout. Coakley's glimmer of hope lies in her base support. If she can get her Dem numbers to 84-13 (rest goes to 3rd party), she wins (assuming the electorate is in fact 39% Dem.).


[ Parent ]
It's not about left and right. (0.00 / 0)
It's about desperate people being ground down by the wealthy elite.

Obama chose the wealthy elite.

Now it's harvest time.

Now we should all be consoling ourselves with the knowledge that the neocons have no intention of doing anything that the teabaggers really want. In other words, we'll have another chance to get things right.

The two parties exist to keep the people divided with puerile "social issues" so that the thieves can run off with the money.

How to escape this electoral wheel of karma?

A broad-based* populist movement that wrecks the elite and hopefully gets some Constitutional support for multi-party elections, so that we can go back to our petty bickering over "social issues".

* That means left, right, and center.


[ Parent ]
stale negative attacks backfired (4.00 / 1)
When Brown pulled within striking distance I assumed the only way he could have won was with a stealth, under the radar campaign. I figured that as soon as Democrats realized Coakley could lose, turnout would increase and she would win easily.

But she and the DSCC panicked and ran a bunch of unconvincing, stale attack ads. The latest direct-mail hit job is pathetic. That's their case for Coakley? Brown has been surging in the polls even since more people started paying attention. Very depressing, and doesn't augur well for the DSCC and DCCC being able to spend money effectively in the other races.

Join the Iowa progressive community at Bleeding Heartland.


Are they trying the proven Deeds strategy again? (0.00 / 0)
Delivering the message "hey, the other guy is even worse"? D'oh.

Damn, it's about time Dem party leaders accept the ugly truth: If an unpopular candidate needs a lot of money and high level support to even make it through the primary, this isn't a good sign for a success in the general election! Deciding the nomination behind closed doors is so last century, and more and more voters refuse to play along in such a kabuki theatre.

But I guess we can be sure that the damn Dems will once again draw all the wrong lessons from this failure...
|-(  


[ Parent ]
Filibuster (0.00 / 0)
Will a Coakley loss force the Democrats to kill the filibuster rule in the Senate?

So if C. Bowers is calling it a toss-up (0.00 / 0)
I should read that it is in the bag for Brown?

The dynamic on the ground here in MA that people here should know is that (4.00 / 1)
the MA Democratic Presidential primary is the narrative within which this race is taking place~

This interactive map put out by the Boston Globe shows the results between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama back in March 2008.

It is intructive for a couple of reasons - on a very important level it was seen as a repudiation of Deval Patrick, Governor, as well as a slap to Ted Kennedy and John Kerry who had endorsed Barack Obama during the primaries.

I cannot emphasize enough how much those endorsements and real active campaigning for Obama beyond the endorsements  bothered many in the Democratic base.

They perceived it as putting a thumb on a scale - unfair- when the race was considered so close.

I actually know Obama activists who were so stunned and upset at the defeat that they refused phone calls and literally couldn't get ut of bed for days after that primary was in the books - the level of defeat came out of left field for them and they had thought that Edwards getting out just prior to that primary was going to send all of his supporters into the Obama column.

Didn't happen.

Next, once Clinton had received her overwhelming victory here in MA a lot of women here were outraged at her treatment( they still talk about it to this day) and those same women were insrumental in getting the victory for Coakley during the primary.

When Obama got the lock on the nomination Unity events were planned around the state...Hillary supporters never showed up, I know, I went to a few.

There was no doubt they were going to support Martha irregardless of her record( or lack of a legislative one); one could talk about the clear comparisons to former Democratic gubenatorial candidate Shannon O'Brien  KNOWING Martha was going to go up against Scott Brown- Shannon was another flat, boring, somewhat arrogant campaigner   who got CRUSHED by Romney and one can't help but think that there is some sexism going on here but many voters.

But added to this mix is some disullusionemnt with Obama's performance: Martha Coakley needed in some way to distance herself from Obama and use language such as Pete Defazio did when he spoke to Mike Stark recently and I think people would have seen her as an independent voice and not just a given Obama vote.

That interactive map may turn out to look like the Senate Map only Scott Brown may win the suburbs with Coakley taking the cities - playing the Obama role in this map.

It is going to come down to men vs women......for Coakley to win she has to turn out women in a huge way.

Please do  not assume that MA voters do not follow the process of how health care reform has unfolded in DC.

Please do not assume that MA voters do not follow how Wall St has been catered to  and how little if any regulation has been proposed to fundamentally fix what went wrong.

Please do not assume that the escalation in Afghanistan has not bothered people.

Please do not assume that people here do not realize that they can use their vote to send a message.

I am talking to people who see this as a 50/50 problem: 50 percent of Marth's problem is Martha and her strategy and 50 percent is Obama's performance to date.



Um (0.00 / 0)
Please do  not assume that MA voters do not follow the process of how health care reform has unfolded in DC.

Please do not assume that MA voters do not follow how Wall St has been catered to  and how little if any regulation has been proposed to fundamentally fix what went wrong.

Please do not assume that the escalation in Afghanistan has not bothered people.

Please do not assume that people here do not realize that they can use their vote to send a message.

So they're voting for someone who opposes any progressive healthcare reform, supports Wall St even more than Democrats ever could, supports the escalation in Afghanistan?

Alright I won't assume any of that, but I will assume the people of Massachusetts are morons.  


[ Parent ]
You don't have to believe me but you could read another MA resident's take on the (0.00 / 0)
current  situation:

Robert Kuttner

Is he a moron too?


[ Parent ]
I'd (0.00 / 0)
drop the UNH poll if you're to drop the pajamas poll. They are both outliers that seem to just cancel one another out.

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