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Wayne Allyn Root Tells Radio Audience to Vote for Romney
(from: Independent Political Report @ April 6, 2012, 05:23 PM)

Wayne Allyn Root, who is an At-Large Member of the Libertarian National Committee, and Chairman of the Libertarian National Congressional Committee, has this interesting bit of advice today for his listening audience:


Wayne Allyn Root was the 2008 candidate for vice-president for the LP, and is a frequent guest on various  television and radio shows.  He writes columns which are published in several websites, and they are frequently featured here. 

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Poll: Warning Signs for Sen. Lugar
(from: Washington Wire @ April 6, 2012, 05:19 PM)

A poll of Indiana’s hard-fought Republican Senate primary suggests danger signs for incumbent Sen. Richard Lugar, who’s been in Congress since 1977.

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Indiana Sen. Richard Lugar

The Howey/DePauw Indiana Battleground Poll shows Mr. Lugar with a 42%-35% lead over state treasurer Richard Mourdock, while among Republican voters, the two candidates are split at 38% each. Indiana has an open primary system, meaning non-Republicans can vote in the May 8 GOP primary.

While Mr. Lugar is leading, the 42% figure is relatively low for a longtime incumbent, and the high proportion of undecided voters—23%—may be bad news for Mr. Lugar, given how well-known he is.

“After millions of dollars in TV and radio ads, mostly attacking Richard Mourdock personally, Sen. Lugar continues to be under the important threshold of 50% for incumbents, which means people aren’t buying what his campaign is selling,” said Mourdock spokesman Christopher Conner.

Still, there could be room for Mr. Lugar to make gains. In the survey, 40% of GOP voters had no opinion of Mr. Mourdock.

“As the poll says – most people don’t know who Richard Mourdock is,” said Lugar spokesman Andy Fisher. “As we find in our daily calls to Hoosier primary voters – which we have made more than a million — once they know Richard Mourdock, they won’t choose Richard Mourdock.”

Mr. Lugar has long been a popular figure in his home state, but he’s become the target of the same energized conservative groups that are aiming to knock off Republicans across the country they consider insufficiently conservative, such as Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch.

Mr. Lugar has been buffeted during the primary by questions about his residency; he sold his Indianapolis house shortly after winning his Senate seat in 1976. The Club for Growth, a well-financed small-government group, has run television ads accusing Mr. Lugar of, among other things, supporting gasoline tax increases in the past (they were generally parts of larger bills).

The Democratic candidate for Senate, Rep. Joe Donnelly, is considered the underdog in Republican-leaning Indiana, but polls suggests he’d do better against Mr. Mourdock than against Mr. Lugar. The Howey/DePauw poll shows Mr. Mourdock and Mr. Donnelly each getting 35% in a head-to-head race, while Mr. Lugar leads Mr. Donnelly 50%-29%.

Bonus Quote of the Day
(from: Political Wire @ April 6, 2012, 04:59 PM)

"Unlike these other pussies that are saying, 'Oh, we don't want to have a brokered convention' -- they're a bunch of pussies, OK? Those are the ones that are the establishment boys that think they're still viable with the people. They're not viable with the people anymore. Those are the control boys. All they're about is keeping the status quo and the status quo is not real anymore for the Republican rank and file nationally."

-- Carl Palladino (R), quoted by Capital New York, making the case for Newt Gingrich in New York's April 24th primary.

Beyond Outrage
(from: Political Wire @ April 6, 2012, 04:15 PM)

New e-book: Beyond Outrage by Robert Reich.

Are Michigan Republicans Violating the State's Constitution?
(from: Political Wire @ April 6, 2012, 03:33 PM)

Rachel Maddow has an must-see report showing how the Republican-controlled Michigan legislature has used voice votes to declare the constitutionally-mandated two-thirds majority needed for laws to take "immediate effect."

Maddow calls the practice "the most radical thing Republicans have done anywhere in the country."

ME-Sen: Angus King begins march to coronation
(from: Swing State Project @ April 6, 2012, 02:54 PM)

Bass Harbor Head Light
Bass Harbor Head Light

Maine People's Resource Center (pdf). 3/31-4/2. "Registered Maine voters in likely voter households." MoE: ±3.1% (no trendlines):

Matt Dunlap (D): 12
Charlie Summers (R): 22
Angus King (I): 56
Undecided: 10
Cynthia Dill (D): 20
Matt Dunlap (D): 17
John Hinck (D): 6
Benjamin Pollard (D): 2
Undecided: 55

Charlie Summers (R): 28
Bruce Poliquin (R): 12
Rick Bennett (R): 7
Debra Plowman (R): 6
Scott D'Amboise (R): 4
William Schneider (R): 4
Undecided: 40

We've gotten our first poll of the Maine Senate race since the filing deadline passed and the candidates have sorted themselves out. It's also only the second poll since Olympia Snowe's unexpected retirement announcement; PPP got into the field quickly, but that was before broadly-popular independent ex-Gov. Angus King bigfooted his way into the race. Most of their permutations tested out Democratic heavyweights like Rep. Chellie Pingree and ex-Gov. John Baldacci; their most useful finding was their one permutation involving a King three-way, which found King at 36, Pingree at 31, and Republican SoS Charlie Summers at 28. Today's poll, though, is the first to try out a three-way race with one of the second-tier Democrats who actually got in. Unsurprisingly, given his generally left-of-center positioning, King vacuums up most of those Democratic votes that went to Pingree in PPP's sample, pushing him well north of 50 percent here.

The poll is from a pollster we haven't seen before, the Maine People's Resource Center, described by the Bangor Daily News as "affiliated with the Maine People?s Alliance, a progressive statewide advocacy group," and, in their own words (from their polling memo) "a non-partisan, non-profit organization dedicated to giving people, especially those groups that are under-represented in civic life, skills and information to participate in the decision-making processes that affect them." If that description strikes you as one of a partisan pollster, then you might take the poll with a grain of salt, but as you can see from King's mighty toplines, if they're shilling for the Democrats, they're doing a pretty poor job of it!

One other consideration is that their sample breaks 39 Democratic, 29 GOP, 31 unenrolled. Actual state registration figures (pdf), as of February, are 32 Democratic, 28 GOP, 37 unenrolled, so the sample may overweight Democrats at the expense of indies ... but again, that doesn't seem to matter one bit as far as King's dominant performance goes. In fact, King performs nearly as strongly among Democrats as among indies; he gets 61 percent of Democrats (with 24 percent of Democrats going for Dunlap) compared with 67 percent of indies (who also break 11 percent for Dunlap and 16 percent for Summers). King loses among GOPers, but even there he gets 38 percent to Summers' 52 percent.

Their general election poll only ran one permutation, apparently assuming that Matt Dunlap, the state's former secretary of state (which isn't a statewide elected position in Maine), would be the Democratic nominee. However, Dunlap's in second place in the Democratic primary, behind state Sen. Cynthia Dill, who seemed to stake out a more aggressive position early and has been one of the few people interested in publicly calling out King on the actual impracticalities of his post-partisan rhetoric. (Undecideds are so high on the Democratic side, though, that there's no point in drawing conclusions yet.) Current SoS Charlie Summers is in a somewhat more dominant position on the GOP side, but is only a slightly larger speed bump for King in the general than Dunlap is.

Chellie Pingree (D): 61
Jon Courtney (R): 28
Undecided: 11
Mike Michaud (D): 53
Kevin Raye (R): 37
Undecided: 10
As an added bonus, we get our first polling looks at Maine's two Congressional races, where Pingree and Michaud decided they were better off staying rather than fighting for Democratic votes with King. Courtney and Raye are no slouches?far from being of the "Some Dude" variety, they're Maine's state Senate majority leader and state Senate president respectively?but they don't seem to be getting much of any traction here, suggesting that Maine's pro-Republican shift in 2010 (they elected a GOP governor, Paul LePage, and turned control of the legislature over to Republicans) was a one-time event rather than the start of a trend. (More evidence for that: LePage's approvals are only 39/56.) Michaud's race is somewhat closer, given that ME-02 is a swingy/light-blue district while ME-01 is solidly blue, but even he looks out of danger.

Speaking of the Congressional districts, Maine is one of the few states that allocates electoral votes based on CD, and it looks like Barack Obama can still count on all of Maine's EVs. In the poll's presidential portion, he's up 48-41 over Mitt Romney in ME-02, as well as 61-33 in ME-01 and 55-37 statewide.

Finally, while the poll doesn't specifically address how people plan to vote on the upcoming same-sex marriage referendum re-do, people's general feelings about the matter make it look likely that same-sex marriage will make its legal return to Maine. Fifty-eight percent favor allowing same-sex couples to marry in Maine, while 40 percent oppose. (H/t to ndrwmls10 for finding the poll before anyone else did.)

Christie Increasingly Seen in Negative Terms
(from: Political Wire @ April 6, 2012, 02:03 PM)

While New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's (R) favorability rating show little change, 46% to 42%, a new Rutgers-Eagleton Poll finds voters are more likely to describe him as "stubborn, arrogant and self-centered than they were six months ago."

Key findings: In the last six months, those who describe him as "arrogant" are up 15 points. The terms "self-centered" and "bully" each gained 11 points, "stubborn" is up 12 points and "angry" is up 11 points.

Marion Barry Controversy, in Video and Tweets
(from: Washington Wire @ April 6, 2012, 01:55 PM)

Washington city council member Marion Barry – the onetime mayor who served time in prison related to a drug sting and later was elected a councilman — has apologized for his election night remarks in which he said Asian-American-owned businesses should move out of the neighborhoods in his ward. But he stuck to his criticism of some businesses, saying that the retail experience was poor, citing dirty shops, plexiglass barriers and unhealthy food options.

[View the story "Marion Barry" on Storify]

Unzipping Romney
(from: Political Wire @ April 6, 2012, 01:49 PM)

Ann Romney unzips her husband in a new campaign video to show his more personal side.

"Those were the five boys. I hate to say it, but often I had more than five sons. I had six sons, and he would be as mischievous and as naughty as the other boys."

Santorum's Daughter Is Hospitalized
(from: NY Times The Caucus @ April 6, 2012, 01:19 PM)

Rick Santorum's daughter Bella, 3, suffers from Trisomy 18, a rare disorder that is fatal in most cases shortly after birth.

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