LA-SEN: Kennedy (R) in, seat leans R

Kennedy up 45-38 in first poll

By Adam C Posted in Comments (20) / Email this page » / Leave a comment »

Popular Treasurer and recent party-switcher John Kennedy (R) will run against endangered Sen. Landrieu (D). The first poll covering the race is a Zogby poll* of adults in mid-October that puts Kennedy ahead 45% - 38%.

There are rumors that Karl Rove was instrumental in recruiting Kennedy to switch parties and run. No other major Rs have shown much interest in running. Thus, unless a major change occurs, this will be a Kennedy v. Landrieu race and easily the best R pickup opportunity in 2008.

*Not a suspicious Zogby Online Poll.

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Finally, a 2008 Senate race where we have a very strong chance of taking one from the Democrats. This is our best chance of a takeover, and we have our top choice.

Never good for an incumbent to be polling 35%. And as Bobby Jindal begins to clean things up down there, the Republican brand will get stronger. With no other Republican stepping in, this could shape up to be another first round win - no runoff needed.

Now where's SIConservative to rain on the parade and tell us how awful things are and how we should give up on the Senate because we have a much better chance of taking the House?

If Rs sweep every possible seat that is being contested they end up even (winning LA, losing VA). If the election were today, Rs lose VA, NH, CO, and NM and win LA (R -3). And the only other seats being contested right now are R incumbent or open seats (MS, ID, NE, ME, OR, and MN). Rs aren't competing in AR, WV, or ND among others.

That's a pretty bad "battlefield" for Rs and almost guarantees a loss of 2-6 seats. If Rs lose only net 2, they should be pretty happy.

Donate to the Rs in Close Senate Races through Slatecard

Agreed. We're fighting uphill. But if you read SIConservative you would think that we should all refuse any financial support to Republican Senate candidates so we could win the House.

I don't care if we are going to lose seats in the Senate. I think it is more important than the House. The House does a lot. But if we give up on the Senate we could find ourselves -7 or -8 and perilously close to being unable to filibuster anything.

We're not going to win the House back. So why should we also lose the only chance we may have to stop socialism?

If it's late enough, maybe Huckabee will have given up on his presidential bid in enough time to make a Senate bid.

Finrod's First Law of Bandwidth:
A picture may be worth a thousand words, but it takes the bandwidth of ten thousand.

Things are awful, but my commentary on the Senate has been somewhat misinterpreted. Some have twisted my words to suggest that we shouldn't pay any attention to the Senate. What I've actually said is that we should be realistic about the number of seats we can actually win rather than believing that we really are within a hair of reclaiming the Senate and wasting time, money, and energy in states like Montana and South Dakota. Louisiana is our only legitimate shot at a pick-up this cycle and is a prime example of a proper focus. Every dollar spent in a futile attempt to save Virginia or a just about futile attempt to save New Hampshire is a dollar not spent in what will likely be a highly competitive Louisiana Senate race. I'll readily bring up what I have said all along should we miss the opportunity to pick this seat up because we wasted so much on races that have at this point been over for months.

I thought it said 45-38?

Also, this sentence scares me: "The target sample is 1,001 interviews with approximately 24 questions asked from 10/10/07 to 10/14/07."

I'm curious what those questions are, and where the "big question" falls in the sequence.

Ah the benefits of feedback in blogging. Thanks, I have fixed the numbers from my incorrect 43-35 to the correct 45-38.

And yes this is not an ideal poll. I doubt Landrieu is at 38 although I doubt she's over 50 either. I would rate this as a toss up until some more polls come out.

Donate to the Rs in Close Senate Races through Slatecard

Usually campaign polls/push polls struggle to get the challenger even with the incumbent. If he's able to put together a polls showing an 8-point lead at this point, I'd say he's doing okay.

...question 24 was "well, now who would you vote for," and question 23 was "would it change your mind if you knew that Mary Landreiu will assist Hillary Clinton's pro-abortion agenda?"

However, since that's likely to come up in, say, October 2008, it's not such a bad test...

Is this guy going to be a RINO, or a Conservative?

...a long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right...

---Thomas Paine---

It would be hard to call him a rock-ribbed Republican because six months ago he was a Democrat.

To be fair, Kennedy has enforced policies of fiscal restraint as Treasurer, and has been willing to buck the governor on that count.

My concern stems from the 2004 Senate election: Vitter (R) on the right, then Rep. Chris John (D) in the middle and Kennedy (D) on the left. Kennedy had the support of Bill Jefferson and the more liberal and urban wings of the Democratic party where John had little natural appeal.

Vitter won in the primary, BTW.

There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe, and it has a longer shelf life. - Frank Zappa

Any chance we could get someone better?

...a long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right...

---Thomas Paine---

Secretary of State Jay Dardenne would be the most logical candidate with a statewide job. I believe him to be a solid conservative, but John Kennedy may beat him on name recognition (duh*).

Then there are the congressmen. Pretty strong R delegation, not sure how many could run well statewide. McCrery & Baker have quite a bit of seniority, too.

Past that, there's the state legislature. Not sure if any are ready for prime time.

* Reminds me of my youth in Oklahoma where a stray dog could get elected if his name was William (as in Will) Rogers. One guy got run out of office at least 2 or 3 times, but the loyal citizenry would re-elect ol' Will in the next election...

There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe, and it has a longer shelf life. - Frank Zappa

John Kennedy is the State Treasurer not the secretary of state.

He's been pretty fiscally conservative in that role, holding the Blanco administration in check.

I'm glad Landrieu will have a credible opponent, and has a good chance of losing.

That said, I still can't figure out why Jay Darden (SP?) the Republican Secretary of State wouldn't be a stronger candidate. He actually had an opponent last time, and won 63% of the vote. Kennedy has lost statewide while running as a Democrat for Senate.

Anyhow, I'm fine with either given how difficult the Senate landscape will be this time around. I just wonder why nobody is talking about Jay Darden.

John Bolton for President

Is 6 weeks old, I'm not sure if it's trustworthy. I'd like to see more polling.

She has 100% name recognition and she's pulling a 38?

That can't be good.


Read my most recent story, "Amy Tuck for MS Senator" on First Cut Politics

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