PredictionsEndorse2006 Gubernatorial Predictions - Alcon (D-WA) ResultsPolls
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Date of Prediction: 2006-11-06 Version:17

Prediction Map
Alcon MapPrediction Key

* = Pickup via defeat of incumbent; ^ = Pickup of an open seat

Confidence Map
Alcon MapConfidence Key

Prediction States Won
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36 |
50 |

Confidence States Won
25 |
36 |
50 |

State Pick-ups

Gain Loss Hold Net Gain
Inc. Open Total Inc. Open Total Inc. Open Total

Prediction Score (max Score = 72)

ScoreState WinsState Percentages


Final prediction. So much I'm not sure about. This will be one crazy election day.

Prediction History
Prediction Graph

Comments History - hide

Version: 16









Version: 15

Hot Seats - competitive ones to watch - indicated in purple. Non-competitive seats nearly certain to flip are noted in red (for Democrats) and blue (for Republicans, of which there are none).

Alabama. New polls out of Alabama from my last update include Riley +25 (University of Southern Alabama), Riley +18 (Rasmussen), and Riley +21 (SurveyUSA). None of these pollsters have historically great records in the state or region, but there's certainly no question that Riley leads. The only real question is whether he breaks 60%, which is frustratingly near 50-50 in my book, now.

Alaska. New polls are Palin (R) +12 (Field), Palin +7 (Rasmussen) and Palin +11 (Democratic pollster Moore Information). It's a weird result when a Democratic pollster gets a notably more Republican poll than a major (Rasmussen), but Rasmussen has been a little screwy this cycle. Palin should dominate, but with how independents do on the Alaska ballot and with Republican resentment potentially high, it's hard to see her breaking 60 percent.

Arizona. New polls here vary. They are Nepolitano (D) +34 (Behavior Research Center), +21 (Rasmussen), +19 (Survey USA) and +34 (Arizona State University). There is one thing on which they all agree, though: Nepolitano is somewhere around 58% (all of them find 58% except Survey USA's 56%). Right now, I'd give odds to her breaking 60 percent, but a 59% or even maybe 58% would not be out of the question.

Arkansas. It looks to be all over in Arkansas. We haven't seen a single-digit lead since Rasmussen's odd Dem +4 result in August, and - although all of the pollsters here are either occasionally wonky in the South or no-names - it's hard to argue with results. It's on the cusp between lean and strong, but for now it goes to strong. It's just hard to imagine a great recovery here.

California. Much like Arkansas, this race was competitive, and now it totally isn't. At minimum, Schwarzenegger leads by around ten; at most, nearing twenty. In any case, a R>50 result here is a very safe bet.

Colorado. New polls show Democrat Ritter up 10 (Ciruli Associates), 15 (the ever-beloved Mason-Dixon) and 18 (Survey USA). In what conventional wisdom once said to be a GOP-leaning toss-up, the potential of breaking 60 percent is unlikely, but must make for delicious bragging rights for Democrats. This race is g7one.

Connecticut. Republican Jodi Rell has gone from polling around 70 percent to polling just below 60 percent. No matter; R>60 looks probable, although it looks like the 70 percent mark is no longer reachable.

Florida. This race has been a constant source of consternation thanks to Quinnipiac University. The normally good pollster just doesn't seem to get it here. When other pollsters were showing double-digit Republican leads, Quinnipiac had the Democrat up. Now, we have Mason-Dixon and Survey USA, as well as the unknown quantity Research & Polling Inc., showing double-digit leads, while Rasmussen shows GOP +5 and Quinnipiac only +2. I'm going to go with instinct here and assume that Quinnipiac is just wrong and Rasmussen is behaving as oddly in Florida as they seem to have been behaving elsewhere. Nonetheless, these weird results are enough to keep Florida as a lean designation.

Georgia. Another race that might have broken 60% (here, for the GOP) if not for independent candidates. Here, the Libertarian looks like he may steal some of Purdue's thunder.

Hawai'i. Lingle is threatening to break 70 percent in polling...or was in May, when this race was last polled.

Idaho. The formula in Idaho has caused some pundits to move it to lean designation. That formula is underwhelming 2002 result for the GOP + bad year for the GOP = lean. But the polling disagrees. Still, though, there's not much polling (unfortunately) and I'm moving it to R>50. Why? Arbitrary. It's hard to get a pulse of this race, but I'm not going to concede as the pundits have that it's competitive (how unusually brash of me).

Illinois. New polls have the Green candidate performing at around 10%, which really should be enough to knock off Blagojevich, but Topinka is just polling dreadfully, around a third of the vote. D>40 and a lean designation, just to be conservative, even if that >40 might bite me in the butt.

Iowa. New polls show GOP +1 (Rasmussen), Dem +7 (Selzer & Co.) and Dem +5 (Research 2000 - retro in more than just name. Where have they been?). That's vague enough to be a toss-up in my book, with maybe a slight Dem advantage.

Kansas. With a new Survey USA poll showing Sebelius up 13, Kansas finally moves back to strong Democratic.

Maine. Survey USA says independents are polling 22% in Maine. Like in Illinois, I have trouble believing that this is anything other than disgruntled voters who will not all vote independent on Election Day. Even with these voters, unpopular Dem Baldacci leads moderately. To lean from toss-up it goes, but also down to D>40, although that could bite me in the butt too. Barely hanging on to the Hot Seats list.

Maryland. More lean-ish polling from a chronically lean-ish race, but the Democrats will probably pick up a seat here.

Massachusetts. This race has tightened considerably - from a total blow-out to a strong Democratic advantage. Yawn. Until a poll finds an under-10 point advantage, it's a non-starter.

Michigan. Competitive, but with a distinct Democratic edge to its toss-up status.

Minnesota. An incredibly close race. New additions are Rasmussen (Dem +2) and the famously Dem-biased Star Tribune/ISG poll (Dem +9). Even a minor independent performance might keep this below 50 percent, on the perhaps ridiculous assumption that gubernatorial polling is all that accurate.

Nebraska. Democrat Hahn probably won't see 30 percent.

Nevada. Rasmussen's GOP +8 is the only addition, echoing what most have believed about this race, which is that it leans Republican at about enough of a slope as to be uncompetitive.

New Hampshire. Research & Polling Inc. throws in a poll that lends additional likelihood to Lynch breaking 70 percent (the poll shows 70%-19%).

New Mexico. No new polls; it still looks like Richardson will be around 60 percent, perhaps a bit over.

New York. The New York GOP has thoroughly embarssed itself. Spitzer will likely break 70 percent. A 3-to-1 massacre is also not impossible.

Ohio. Looking back at the polling, Ohio never really was all that competitive. Many new results here: D +12 (Rasmussen), D +28 (Survey USA), D +12 (University of Cincinnati), D +17 (Rasmussen again), D +25 (New York Times), D +27 (Qunnipiac) and D +20 (Mason-Dixon). Strickland might theoretically break 60 percent, and right now I'd be unsurprised if he did. I'd put the chances around 50/50.

Oklahoma. Dem Brad Henry walks with a >60 win, in all likelihood.

Oregon. The only pollsters showing this as a virtual deadheat botched 2004 in favour of the Republicans, including Riley Research, which had one of the worst performances of any Presidential pollster there. Then again, both it and the other (Moore Information) have done well in the past. I still think there's a Dem lead here, but it could be quite close.

Pennsylvania. With Russ Diamond out of the picture, it's looking possible - perhaps even likely - that Rendell will break 60 percent.

Rhode Island. New results are all in lean territory, for the most part: GOP +1 (Gallup), GOP +8 (Rhode Island College), GOP +3 (Rasmussen), GOP +8 (Survey USA), GOP +7 (Rasmussen) and GOP +10 (Mason-Dixon). In deference to the closer results, I'm giving this a very narrow Hot Seat designation.

South Carolina. Survey USA seems to have taken over for Rasmussen as the only pollster to bother in South Carolina. Their new result, GOP +15, is a solidification after last month's GOP +4. To strong it goes.

South Dakota. Nothing new. R>60 remains the projection.

Tennessee. Gallup (D +40) suggests that Bredesen has good odds of breaking 70 percent; Survey USA (D +38), Rasmussen (D +35), Survey USA again (D +31) and Mason-Dixon (D +35) all say "unlikely possibility." I agree with them. Still, a run-away.

Texas. For all the excitement in the candidate selection process, this has been a relatively boring race. Blame it on Rick Perry's hair. R>40.

Vermont. Republican Douglas might break 60 percent, he might not. No new polls to tell us.

Wisconsin. For as often as this race has been within MoE, we haven't seen the GOP lead since June. Independents may keep the race below 50 percent if it close.

Wyoming. Mason-Dixon grants us the first new poll here since July, which shows Freudenthal winning a solid victory in the 60s. Cool. I don't have to change my prediction.

Version: 14

States that can still be considered as notably competitive are indicated in red.

Alabama. There was a time when Alabama was seen as a major pick-up opportunity. Along with Georgia, the chances of this have seemed to all but disappeared. In truth, polling here has been extremely consistent after a few early Rasmussen +7's (with an odd +16 inbetween them). The Republican has always been up, at least by a strong lean margin. Now, it's just plain strong. The only good news for the Democrats is that it looks like the race will probably be closer than Bush/Kerry, but not by much. The GOP threatens to break 60 here, but right now, I'd predict them not doing it.

Alaska. Since the early polling where Field inexplicably left their normal California bounds to deliver a Democrat win poll, Frank Murkowski has seemingly surpassed Bob Taft as the most unpopular Governor in America. Not that it matters; the Alaska race has turned out to be a red herring for the Democrats. Republican Sarah Palin is difficult to connect to Taft, and now leads Tony Knowles by a big margin. Dislike for the state GOP will probably keep Palin under 60 percent, but this is looking to be a small landslide.

Arizona. The historically clueless Arizona State University delivers a poll showing incumbent Democrat Janet Napolitano crushing Republican Len "Whoever" Munsil by 36 points. Doubtful, but lends additional indication that Napolitano may break 60. Right now, I'm praying for another poll from a more reliable company before election day. This may be one of those annoying 59.99% type of races.

California. Another race that was, and then wasn't for the Dems. Schwarzenegger leads by around 15 percentage points in most polls, an absolutely embarssing crushing for the Democrats in a state they should be competitive in with any candidate.

Colorado. The theme of the season seems to have been run-away train races. Of the four states so far, three of them have been formerly competitive races that went for the Republicans in a big way. Colorado is the same thing, but for the Democrats. Double-digit leads nearly 20 points. The possibility of hitting 60 percent. It just ain't happening for the GOP here. The only remaining interesting factor is whether the GOP will fail to break 40 percent, which looks distinctly possible.

Connecticut. The Democrats still stand no chance of making it out of the low-to-mid 30s here.

Florida. Polling here since late September is creepy. The Republican margin has progressed as follows, 6, 5, 10, 14, 15, 21. It would all make sense if the polls weren't conducted within four days of each other. But the number that really matters to me is Mason-Dixon's 15, which is enough to take this off the watchlist for me and make this near a strong lean. Sixty percent might be too much to ask for, though.

Georgia. Another race that sort of was, but never really was, and isn't now. Safe for the GOP.

Hawai'i. Republican Linda Lingle may break 70 percent, but with the limited polling on this race, we probably won't know. Oh well.

Idaho. The sleeper of the year? Just kidding. The last poll we saw was from Research & Polling Inc., perhaps the most incredibly generic name ever invented for a polling company - enough that I can't remember if we've seen anything from them before, let alone whether it was good or not. Of course, with 33 percent undecideds, we can be pretty sure that R&P wasn't pushing undecideds very hard. The last poll before that was a May poll that showed the GOP solidly in the 60s. Seems about right. Democrats might carry the traditional panhandle swingers, but otherwise it will be 2004 all over again.

Illinois. RKM Research gives us a 30-point Democratic margin, which isn't happening. Other polls come in between 6 and 12. In any case, this isn't quite the run-away we've seen in other states, but I'd be surprised if Blagojevich didn't see yet another term, despite his unpopularity. Not watchlist material anymore, although more competitive than other fall-offs.

Iowa. That we haven't seen any polls out of Iowa in a while makes me nervous. It makes me 2004 West Virginia nervous. Looking at the results, we had Selzer & Inc. (push), Research 2000 (Dem +5), Public Opinion Strategies (a Republican pollster that found GOP +3), Rasmussen (Dem +2). The bigger pollsters found the more Dem results. The lack of polling here suggests that the Democrats may be farther up than just looking at these polls suggest, but it's definitely still on the watchlist. I'll give the nod to the Democrats, as they are leading the "bigger" polls.

Kansas. Just when a series of double-digit polls makes me fairly certain, Rasmussen comes in with a nasty Dem +9. But it's October now, and getting the race down to the single-digits just doesn't mean what it does in August. Very close to going strong Dem, and I'm probably being a little generous to the GOP here.

Maine. Survey USA's most recent contribution is the weird Dem 44%, GOP 39%, Independents 13%. This is the first poll to show the independents (a Green and two plain independents, one of whom was polling at 0%) doing this well, and I'm majorly skeptical. But to show Baldacci up 5 with a Green at 7% is not promising for the Republicans. This poll is confusing enough that I'll semi-ignore it in favour of Rasmussen's from eight days earlier, which showed Baldacci up 5 without independents.

Maryland. Mason-Dixon's Dem +4 is too close for comfort, but not quite close enough for a toss-up (considering other polls are +7 and +8). Barely hanging onto the watchlist.

Massachusetts. Christy Mihos is a dude? Poor guy. But poor Kerry Healey (the Republican, and a woman) even more. She is being crushed. Even with Mihos in, it looks like 60 percent is not beyond reach. But it's close.

Michigan. Ignoring EPIC/MRI, which has consistently overpolled for the Democrats, this is an extremely close race, although one where polling strongly implies a weak Democratic advantage. This could be a surprise.

Minnesota. With an independent polling in the mid-to-high single digits, it looks like this may be a plurality win race. Mason-Dixon says GOP by 3, Survey USA says GOP by 1, and some college poll says Dem by 2. Major agreement here; this is one heckuva close race, but deference to Mason-Dixon's result. One of the most exciting races.

Nebraska. Low-to-mid 70s for the GOP looks to be a solid bet. This better not turn out to be a 69%, or I'll be very angry.

Nevada. Mason-Dixon finds GOP by 9, a result suggestive of the overall race (other than Research & Polling Inc.'s odd, random Dem +1 - I suppose their name is worth forgetting). You gotta be closer than this in October. Very close to going strong.

New Hampshire. This one is a pain. Two polls (one Survey USA and one a uni) say solid 70s for the Dems, one says solid low 60s (ARG). I'm not sure what to think, but >70 for now. This one may frustrate me on election day, but only percentage-wise. The GOP obviously stands no chance.

New Mexico. Looks like low 60s for the Democrats are probable. No story here.

New York. The GOP should immediately dispatch troops to Hamilton County, just so they don't lose every county in the state (they probably won't, but they could).

Ohio. This was never a race, really. The lone single-digit result, Dem +6 from the University of Cincinnati, just goes to show that university polls are oftentimes not so much biased as they are just bad.

Oklahoma. Brad Henry will probably break 60.

Oregon. With Ben Westlund out of the race, and no real improvement for the GOP in polling, this is an unlikely upset that the Republicans probably won't bother with. They have much closer states to defend.

Pennsylvania. Another run-away, with the Democrats looking at the upper 50s.

Rhode Island. Somehow, the Democrats went from being up by 5 per Rasmussen to down by 16 per Mason-Dixon in well under a month. Wow. But, nonetheless, a GOP +16 from Mason-Dixon isn't going to turn into a loss by election day (God willing I won't have to eat my hat this year).

South Carolina. This race has suddenly become competitive according to SurveyUSA, which finds GOP +4. I don't totally buy it, but whatever. One more poll before the big day, preferrably not from the recently erratic SUSA, please.

South Dakota. Mike Rounds has thoroughly pissed off both the pro-choice and pro-death penalty, a combined group that must make at least 50 percent of the state of South Dakota. And he's looking to cruise to a re-election margin greater than Bush's. Kudos, Governor Rounds. That takes moxee.

Tennessee. Phil Bredesen threatened to annoy his liberal base while not impressing the conservatives, a dangerous thing to do, but has ended up impressing the conservatives while not pissing off his liberal base so much. That equals over 60 percent, an impressive return for the Democrats in a state like Tennessee.

Texas. I'm really getting tired of Texas's wonky polling with its independents. Good TV, bad polling. R>40 is looking pretty solid, although there is always the possibility that all of the pollsters here have been doing a crappy job and vastly over/under-estimating independent support. It's unlikely.

Vermont. R>60 is possible, but right now Vermont might just be too Democratic to allow this. A landslide for the GOP nonetheless, albeit a minor one.

Wisconsin. Consistent small-to-moderate leads for the Democrats in Wisconsin.

Wyoming. Another poll, maybe with fewer undecideds, to determine whether Freudenthal will break 60 (he probably will) would be nice.

Version: 13

It's time for another spin through the 2006 Gubernatorial races, as we move into the summer polling season. Now, it is a fairly widely accepted idea that summer polling tends to lean toward the Dems -- Republicans are more likely to go on vacation -- but polls are still worth watching. The Republicans have a similar bump in September and October, before independents start tuning in but after the summer months. I'm not going to adjust to avoid "summer issues," but they should always be considered.

Alabama. June has given us three polls - one snapshot one-day poll from Rasmussen, one from the University of Southern Alabama, and one from Survey USA. All three have incumbent Republican Bob Riley up by solid margins. The disagreement is the margin. SurveyUSA and Rasmussen have Riley up a respectable 11 and 14, respectively. The University of Southern Alabama, on the other hand, gives Riley a 28-point margin. University polls don't have sterling records and usually lean Dem, but it appears this one has come up with a Republican-heavy result. An interesting note to be made: while the University poll has 22 percent undecided, Rasmussen has 6 percent and Survey USA has a striking 2 percent ("other" nets 6 percent). This race is close to going strong, but it's a lean for now.

Alaska. Democrats nationwide cheered when hated Republican incumbent Frank Murkowski announced he is running again. Now, Field Research says that Tony Knowles leads Murkowski. Poetic justice, perhaps, as Knowles narrowly lost against Senator Lisa Murkowski, appointed by her popular in an unpopular and nepotistic move that started the elder Murkowski's downward spiral. The good news for Republicans: the same poll shows Murkowski in distant third in the primary, with Sarah Palin leading. Palin is behind Knowles by only 4 points (compared to Murkowski's 32). Considering the Dem-leaning nature of the poll in 2004, and Palin's low name recognition, I'm actually flipping Alaska over to the GOP column. It could very well be this year's Montana, though; it all depends on the primary. If Murkowski wins, game over.

Arizona. No new polling out of Arizona. So far, we only have Rasmussen, which has been a parade of boring. In March, Napolitano was up 20; in April, 21; and in May, 21 again. If only all polling was this consistent. If they are following their pattern, we should see another Rasmussen poll out of Arizona any day now.

Arkansas. No polling out of Arkansas since early May, but there's no reason to assume that Beebe's lead has evaporated.

California. No new polling out of California since May, which is somewhat surprising considering the primary just confirmed the Democrats' candidate.

Colorado. We only have Rasmussen to go on, and they haven't polled since the end of May. A new poll should be out any day now. The last was Democrats by 5, and that's all there is to go on.

Connecticut. Quinnipiac University and Rasmussen both agree: popular Republican Jodi Rell is kicking butt. The degree varies, though. If you ask Quinnipiac, Rell leads by 40; if you ask Rasmussen, Rell leads by 28. This race will most definitely be over 60 percent, with a chance of 70 percent. Right now, I'll adjust the prediction to say 60, but it will probably be close.

Florida. Weird, weird polling in Florida. In March, we got a Mason-Dixon showing a Republican lead of 16. Mason-Dixon's record in Florida is nothing short of brilliant, which makes the nearby result of Republicans by 9 from Strategic Vision seem a little Dem-leading. Of course, it seems even odder when you note that Quinnipiac University - usually a reasonable pollster - found Democrat +3 a month later when Strategic Vision had Republicans up 8. Confused? The gist is that Mason-Dixon is finding much bigger GOP leads than Strategic Vision, which is in turn finding much, much bigger GOP leads than Quinnipiac, which says the Democrats are leading. Quinnipiac must just have a weird sample. Because of their decent record, I'll give Q University the benefit of the doubt and keep this a toss-up.

Georgia. Lieutenant Governor Mark Taylor, who now appears to be leading the primary, is about six points behind incumbent Republican Sonny Perdue, per Strategic Vision. Secretary of State Cathy Cox is much more behind. If Taylor wins the primary, this could be a competitive race; Cox, on the other hand, appears to be cooked.

Hawai'i. Nothing since May in Hawai'i, but Survey USA had a mid-May lead for incumbent Republican Linda Lingle of over 2-to-1. She could hit 70 percent, but I'll put it to >60 for now; I don't know why I had it at >50 previously. Lingle is more or less assured to hit 60.

Idaho. Nothing since a mid-May generic match-up. The Republicans should take this in their standard 2-to-1 walk after an unusually close race the last time around.

Illinois. Field Research (which normally focuses on California, but appears to be branching out) adds a Dem +7 to Survey USA's mid-late-May Dem +6 result. Before that, we have to go back to an April Rasmussen poll showing a GOP lead of 6. I think it is probably closer than Dem +7, but this race is dangerously close to going to lean Dem.

Iowa. Other than a mid-late-May Research 2000 (now, there's a name we haven't seen in a while!) poll, nothing out of Iowa. All polls so far have shown increasing leads Democrat Chet Culver. A primary poll would be welcomed, but it looks like a Culver v. Nussle race would be a Culver advantage at this point.

Kansas. Democrat Kathleen Sebelius is hovering around 50 percent for three Rasmussen polls in a row, after a Dem +8 poll in February that scared some Democrats. Sebelius is popular and her opponent is not exceptionally inspiring. More results in the double-digits and this goes to strong; lean now for safety.

Maine. Maine was accidentally strong Democrat on my last prediction; it has returned to toss-up Democrat. Rasmussen adds a poll with a two-point Dem lead. Nothing much to say here; this is a competitive race.

Maryland. Breaking a poll drought that lasted from mid-May to just a few days ago, AP/Ipsos comes up with a 16-point lead for the Democrats. This is significantly different than the April results which, while Dem-leaning, were not this strong. You could make a good argument that Ehrlich's campaign is collapsing, but he probably isn't unpopular enough to be losing by this much. Nonetheless, more results like this will fling the race into the strong Dem column.

Massachusetts. Nothing since May here either; so far, it's all moderate-to-strong results for the Dems with Christy Mihos polling somewhere around 15-20 percent.

Michigan. Four new polls this month, two of them from EPIC/MRI. EPIC is generally a Dem-leaning pollster, but even if it finding Republican Dick DeVos ahead of incumbent Democrat Jennifer Granholm. The thing that keeps this as a toss-up (other than a Dem +2 result from Rasmussen within two days of EPIC/MRI's GOP +8) is DeVos' lead having fallen from +8 to +2 between the early June and late June EPIC/MRI polls. The solid nature of Strategic Vision (+7's) result sends this above >50, though, as there appears to be no independent thus far.

Minnesota. Nothing since the end of April here. A new poll would be welcomed.

Nebraska. The only question here is still whether incumbent Republican Dave Heineman, off a tough primary battle, will hit 70 percent. Right now, that's pretty much a toss-up.

Nevada. Nothing since Research 2000's mid-May result showing a GOP lead of 5.

New Hampshire. Nothing since the end of April in this strongly Democratic race.

New Mexico. No new polls, but I am adjusting this to Dem >60 -- which this race has been floating around.

New York. Lesser-known polls Blum & Weprin and Sienna Research Institute both agree with Quinnipiac -- Spitzer's margin is floating around, if not just shy of, 50 points. That's a 50 point margin, not just a 50 point poll showing, by the way. Spitzer stands a good chance of hitting 70 percent rght now.

Ohio. Two new polls, one a Survey USA with a Dem +16 result and one a Rasmussen with a Dem +13 result. It looks like the Republicans have all but lost this one. To strong it goes.

Oklahoma. Nothing since the solid, but not landslide, Democrat Rasmussen result at the beginning of May.

Oregon. We need a poll with Ben Westlund in it. My comments from last time remain. No new polling so far.

Pennsylvania. Results since May 8th have ranged from Dem +11 to Dem +24. That's a strong race if there ever was one. It's a sad fall for the Republicans from a race that was once viewed as very competitive.

Rhode Island. June gives us three new polls. Rasmussen, which seems to increasingly be the odd-man-out Democrat poll in a lot of states, says a Dem lead of one. University polls from Brown University and Rhode Island college both give identical results with Republican Carcieri up five (identical except for MoE and sample size, in fact). Overall, it flips back to the GOP, but a non-Rasmussen, non-university poll would be nice.

South Carolina. Rasmussen has this race floating just around sold margins, but not safe ones. Their June poll shows a 12-point lead. This race remains at strong, but it could theoretically be one to watch.

South Dakota. Republican Mike Rounds' signing of the anti-abortion bill should keep him under 70 percent, but he'll still win in a landslide. No new polls to add.

Tennessee. A new Zogby poll (cough) shows incumbent Phil Bredesen leading by 36 (!) points. Granted, it's Zogby, but Bredesen has recently seen a huge spike in approval rating per SurveyUSA. He went from a net 7 approval margin to a net 30 between May and June, and this race goes to strong.

Texas. As tempting as it is to put this race to lean, and I have done so. Kinky Friedman - yes, Kinky Friedman - is polling a decent second. The margin may be significant, but there is a distinct possibility that a Friedman swell could steal voters from Bell and Strayhorn. It's a "strong lean" if there ever was one, but this race is so odd that calling it safe seems inaccurate.

Vermont. Nothing new. This race is strongly Republican.

Wisconsin. Two new polls this month, one from Strategic Vision with Republican Mark Green up 1 point and one from "Wisconsin Policy Research Institute" with Democrat Doyle up 12. Uh, yeah. Hard to call, but this race is a virtual dead heat.

Wyoming. Nothing new; Freudenthal in a walk.

Version: 12

Alabama. It's been April since we saw a poll here, and that showed a reduced GOP lead of about seven points. I think that this race is floating somewhere between lean and strong, but to err on the side of caution, it goes to lean.

Alaska. The Democrats must have been popping bottles of champagne in Juneau when they heard that widely hated incumbent Frank Murkowski was running again. However, Murkowski is old and not popular even among Republicans. Either way, this is good news for the Democrats. Anything involving Murkowski has a high chance of ending up as a circus, and a nasty primary is always good news for the opposing party. If Murkowski wins, this may be a solid lock for the Democrats. As it is, with no polls of any sort, it's very hard to tell -- but the Democrats should probably be given the nod right now.

Arizona. Polls show margins of around twenty points for Janet Napolitano, the incumbent Democrat. The only issue here is whether she will break 60 percent.

Arkansas. Arkansas has gone from being initially competitive to a race with a strongly Democratic lean. The race regularly polls with the Dems up 10 points or more. That's very close to a strong margin, but this is an open seat race, and for now it remains on lean.

California. Well, let's see. We have an LA Times poll showing a big Democratic lead, but it's an LA Times poll. We have a Public Policy Institute poll showing a tie, but it's an unknown pollster and a quarter of respondents were undecided. And then we have a one-day Rasmussen poll with a Democratic lead of two. It's not much to go by, but the Republicans haven't led a poll since early April.

Colorado. For such a close race, Colorado seems to have been summarily ignored by pollsters. The latest Rasmussen poll (end of April) shows a two-point Republican lead after a one-point Democratic lead back in March. It's a very close race, but for now, the Republicans seem to have a slight advantage in the polls.

Connecticut. Jodi Rell may no longer be regularly rated as the most popular governor in America, but she is extremely popular. The only question is whether she will break 70 percent in this otherwise Democratic state. Early polls indicate that her chances are good.

Florida. In two days, we have two polls from generally reliable pollsters showing two entirely different results. The Republican-affiliated Strategic Vision says Republican by 8, and the next day Quinnipiac University (the only trustworthy university poll to speak of) says Democrat by 3. Generally, I trust Strategic Vision slightly more in Florida, and the margin is greater anyway. Nonetheless, paging Mason-Dixon...

Georgia. I have heard from several Georgians that this race is less close than it proably will end up as, but polls generally show solid leads for the Republicans in the upper single digits, although none have approached 10 since an extremely Republican Strategic Vision poll in March. This is a lean Republican if there ever was one.

Hawai'i. It would be nice to have a poll here, since currently approval ratings are the only thing we have to gauge the margin of Republican Linda Lingle's re-election. She might break 60 percent, but she didn't last time.

Idaho. Retiring Republican Dirk Kempthorne did not break 60 last time, but it hard to imagine that popular Congressman "Butch" Otter won't.

Illinois. May saw only one Illinois poll, a Survey USA with a moderate Democratic lead. Still, this was the first Dem-leading poll since March, which is enough to put it on toss-up (even though the margin of the poll would make the race lean Democrat).

Iowa. April and May saw one Iowa poll each, with the Democrats up 8 and 6, a margin that is good enough for lean Democrat.

Kansas. Kathleen Sebelius has been regularly polling up about ten points. She is actually more popular than this would suggest, but Kansas is a strongly Republican state. Definitely a lean Democrat race, even though there is very little chance that Sebelius will lose.

Maine. We have seen two polls out of Maine, both Rasmussens, with one month's separation. The most recent had an eight-point Democratic margin, while the one prior had a three-point Republican margin. Because of the volatile nature of the race, it will remain a toss-up.

Maryland. There have been two polls (other than a throw-away in January), and both of them were back in April. However, both also showed moderate Democratic margins -- the race is lean.

Massachusetts. Polling in this race has been fairly consistent, even if the Democrats' margin has waxed and waned. The most recent Rasmussen poll - earlier this month - shows waxing, enough so to make this race a nearly-strong lean. Independent Christy Mihos regularly comes in around 20 percent, enough to probably keep the winner under 50 percent.

Michigan. Michigan has been a boring race, with no poll (except a probable throw-away Strategic Vision from March) showing a marign of greater than three. The last three polls all show Republican leads, so a Republican toss-up it is.

Minnesota. The last poll out of Minnesota, showing a ten-point Democratic lead, was way back at the end of April. That's a long time, but it's enough to keep this a Democrati elan.

Nebraska. Now that the incumbent Republican has won a surprise primary upset over a congressional representative, the only interesting part of this race is over. The Republican will win, and might break 70 percent.

Nevada. A Research 2000 poll this month showing only a five-point lead for the Republicans is enough to narrow this to a lean race.

New Hampshire. The University of New Hampshire's April poll had Democrat John Lynch with a lead of over 50 percentage points. The only question is whether he will break 70 percent.

New Mexico. There hasn't been a poll out of New Mexico yet, leaving only past election margins and approval ratings to judge by what margin Democrat Bill Richardson will win. He has a good chance of breaking 60 percent, but I'm keeping the race at 50 for now.

New York. There have been an obscene number of polls out of New York for a race where the Democrat is looking at a probably win above 70 percent.

Ohio. The University of Chicago has released the rare university poll which seems to have a Republican lean to it. Every other poll has shown a Democratic lead of 10 points or more, while this one shows seven. Lean Democrat, although very close to strong.

Oklahoma. Democrat Brad Henry leads by 11 points in an early May Rasmussen poll. It is a disappointing margin for such a popular incumbent, but Oklahoma is a solidly conservative state. The race remains at strong, although it's close to lean.

Oregon. A mid-May Rasmussen poll that did not include libertarian/liberal independent ex-Republican Ben Westlund showed unpopular incumbent Ted Kulongowski up by two points. Westlund will probably take away more from Kulongowski than his opponent, so for now I predict a narrow Republican victory.

Pennsylvania. What has happened in Pennsylvania? Rendell went from very small margins and even a tie to being up 20 points all of a sudden. Apparently, the Republican Party in Pennsylvania has combusted for no apparent reason and with no apparent trigger. In any case, this race goes to strongly Democratic.

Rhode Island. The most recent poll, at the end of April, had the Democrats up one point. There need to be more polls out of this state; for now, the smallest possible Democratic advantage.

South Carolina. The Republicans have regularly been polling up around 15 to 20 points in South Carolina.

South Dakota. Republican Mike Rounds may have lost any chance of hitting 70 percent by signing South Dakota's infamous anti-abortion proposition, but he's still looking good for 60.

Tennessee. Democrat Phil Bredesen's so-so approval does not do his chances in the general election. His problem is that he is approved by Republicans, but not Democrats. Most Democrats will come home to roost, though. Republicans are probably a different story, but this election will probably be judged by the independents - most of whom like Bredesen.

Texas. Perry has such a solid lead that, while he won't break 50 percent, he will win quite easily. I wonder if Kinky Friedman will win any counties in the eastlands (or even Travis County)?

Vermont. Republican Jim Douglas is very popular in Vermont, and is frequently a top contender for most popular governor in the nation. And unlike states like Oklahoma and Kansas, Vermont seems to be willing to switch party affiliation to re-elect a popular politician by huge margins. Douglas stands an excellent chance of breaking 60 percent, and an outside one of breaking 70 - although you have to wonder about the ceiling for any Republican in Vermont.

Wisconsin. Wisconsin is another very close state, although we haven't had a poll since April and no poll has shown the Republican up. The last results were D+2, D+4, and push, though. Toss-up in the Dems' favour.

Wyoming. Democrat Dave Freudenthal stands a greater-than-50-percent chance of breaking the 60 percent barrier in Wyoming. 'Nuff said.

Version: 11

A very good update for the Democrats, which leaves Illinois as the only state looking to switch hands the other way now.

Georgia. We've seen some weird polls out of Georgia. The race has gone from Republican-leaning to stronly Republican, and now it seems to be going back to being close. My Georgia sources say that the race could end up as competitive; to lean it goes.

Maine. A new poll out of Rasmussen shows a fairly strong lead for the Democrats. Baldacci is unpopular, and this may be closer, but the current eight-point lead is enough for a lean Dem call and D>50.

Minnesota. Rasmussen says Democrat Mike Hatch is leading incumbent Pawlenty by ten. If this is true, which I doubt, that's quite a blowout for a not-hated incumbent Republican in a moderate state. The race goes to lean, in any case.

Oklahoma. A new poll shows incumbent Democrat Henry with only an eight-point lead - surprising considering his popularity, but not surprising considering the Republican nature of Oklahoma. To lean Dem it goes.

Oregon. Same deal here as with Maine (almost exactly the same deal, actually), except the poll shows unpopular incumbent Democrat Kulongoski up 14 and it's from February. This poll, however, does not contain the independent libertarian-liberal Ben Westlund, who switched from GOP to independent to run. This and the old nature of the poll (Kulongoski was less unpopular when it was taken) mean this race remains a toss-up.

Pennsylvania. Polls continue to flow out of this state and, while they disagree on the margin, there is one clear theme: Rendell is up by some margin. Rasmussen, probably sponsored by indy Russ Diamond, says that Rendell is up a bit with Diamond being a big factor; Franklin and Marshall college says Rendell is really up with Diamond as a virtual non-factor; and Strategic Vision says that Rendell is up slightly less and Diamond is a virtual non-factor. The Rasmussen poll is an oddity, especially with a reliable company like Strategic Vision disagreeing with it. This race goes to lean Dem from toss-up.

Version: 10

There are a number of polls to update on -- some interesting, some just confirming what we already knew. Here's a breakdown.

Alabama. Once-unpopular Republican Governor Bob Riley seems to be back on his feet in Alabama, where he leads Lt. Governor Luxy Baxley by 16 points and former Governor Don Siegelman by 33. Proving that they have the sense that God gave geese, Baxley dispatches Roy Moore by about 18 points, although Moore does narrowly lead Siegelman. In any case, it looks like the Democrats may be hopeless here, and the call goes to strongly Republican.

Colorado. The latest Rasmussen poll shows Republican Bob Beauprez leading Democrat Bill Ritter by two points in Colorado, so to R>50 we go. Rasmussen certainly took it leisurely this time around, with 24 of respondents undecided on the race -- weirdly, up five points from last month's poll. Again, it is likely this race is a statistical tie, but this poll does flip it to the GOP column -- for now.

Kansas. Whomever it will be challenging popular incumbent Democrat Kathleen Sebelius -- House Speaker Robert Jennison or Senator Jim Barnett -- will start out with a pretty significant deficit. Jennison trails Sebelius 50%-33%, while Barnett is behind 49%-37%. Of course, it's early in the race and there is little name recognition, but those numbers should be unnerving to both sides of the fence. A popular incumbent like Sebelius would probably prefer to be over 50 percent so early in the game in such a Republican state, while Republicans probably wish she wasn't around 50 percent in the first place.

Michigan. A new Rasmussen poll in Michigan shows Republican Dick DeVos trailing incumbent Democrat Jennifer Granholm by a lone point, which is a statistical tie. The race remains D>40, even if there is no declared independent.

New Hampshire. A poll by the University of New Hampshire shows incumbent Democrat John Lynch approaching a 75 percent approval rating and outpolling State Senator Jim Coburn (who?) 67%-12%. Of course, that could be in part because 6-in-7 Granite Staters have never heard of Coburn, but 12 percent is still an impressively large number. No incumbent polling at 67 percent has a chance of losing. The only question here is whether Lynch will break 70 percent. For now, at least, he is looking good for it -- extrapolating these poll results show him achieving 85 percent. Of course, that's unlikely, but until all but the most educated (or dishonest) New Hampshire voters have any idea of who Coburn is, the all stays at D>70.

New York. New York Republicans have an exciting choice this primary season, between too-conservative former Republican minority leader John Faso and former Massachusetts Governor Bill Weld. Spitzer will clearly crush either, with the latest Sienna Research Institute poll showing him up 67-16 over Weld and 64-17 over Faso. I am inclined to believe that the more moderate Weld would narrow the margin more, but again, if a candidate is polling over 60 percent, it is pretty much over.

Ohio. Mason-Dixon, a polling firm for which I could not have more love, shows Strickland leading Blackwell by ten points, which does not challenge any recent polls in any significant way. It's still a Democrat-leaning race.

Pennsylvania. Here's a result to make Keystone State Republicans cringe: a new poll from Franklin and Marshall College's Keystone Poll shows Rendell up a solid 14 percentage point. One has to suspect that Rasmussen's last poll was commissioned quietly by libertarian independent Russ Diamond's campaign, because there is no way his support level went from 16 percent to 3 percent in a week and a half. It is worth noting that the Rasmussen poll showed Rendell leading only because of Diamond's inclusion; now that he is polling much lower, Rendell being up 14 points makes no sense whatsoever. Any reasonable logic indicates that the race is closer than this poll demonstrates, but it goes to D>50 nonetheless.

Rhode Island. Woah! It's not often that a race comes out of nowhere like this, but the latest Rasmussen shows incumbent Republican Donald Carcieri behind Democratic Lt. Governor Charles Fogarty by one point. That's enough for a D>50 designation as there are apparently no independents. This has suddenly gone from a strong Republican lean to a very hot race (unless Rasmussen is totally off.)

Wisconsin. Strategic Vision throws its hat in the ring with a poll showing incumbent Democrat Jim Doyle up two measley points over Republican hopeful Mark Green. This basically confirms what we have known for a while, which is that this race is close, but with no poll showing a Republican lead yet, the call remains for the Dems.

Now, seriously folks, before we get another New York poll, would Alaska be too much to ask?

Version: 9

A few new polls to add.

Arizona. A new poll shows a 53%-32% Napolitano lead. Again, it's a question of whether Napolitano will break 60 percent. I doubt she will, but the polls say that - right now - she probably would, and I have changed my prediction accordingly.

Connecticut. A Quinnipiac University poll poll shows Rell leading her Democratic opponent, DeStefano, 66%-20%. The question here is whether Rell will break 70 percent.

Iowa. A new Rasmussen poll has Culver up by 6. I doubt he is that far up, but it's been a while since we've seen a Republican lead, so D>50 it is.

Version: 8

A few updates to make.

California. LA Times releases a fairly exhaustive article and poll every once in a while. The poll is famously Democrat-slanted, and currently shows Democratic frontrunner Westly leading Schwarzenegger by 9 points (Angelides ties him). I think it is closer than that, but I will put it from R>40 to D>50. The partisan breakdown does not seem to be in the write-up; the best we have is primary polling information, which is useless to determine poll lean as the Democratic primary is much more contested.

Florida. No actual change here. Another Strategic Vision poll shows a seven-point lead for the Republican here.

New York. I think this will end up in the 60s, but the recent polls have all showed Spitzer heading toward breaking 70 percent, so I have changed it accordingly. We'll see.

Pennsylvania. A new Rasmussen poll shows Rendell at 40 percent, with Swann at 36 percent and libertarian/conservative independent Diamond at 18 percent. Without Diamond, Swann leads by four points. Rasmussen has a history of conducting polls for groups (most notably the Libertarian Party) without noting they are doing so. This could be a Diamond campaign poll, but nonetheless, the call goes to D>40.

Wisconsin. A new poll out of Wisconsin shows a four-point margin for Democrat Doyle. It's very close, but no polls so far have shown the Republican as being up. I'll change it to D>50 because I'm unaware of any independents in this race, but it is quite close.

Version: 7

A number of changes this time around. All of them are based on past or recent polls; today is really just a cleaning of house.

The changes are:

CA: R>50 to R>40
CT: R>60 to R>70
IL: D>40 to R>50
MA: D>30 to D>40

Version: 6

The new change today is Florida back to lean following a Rasmussen poll showing the GOP up by 11. I think that Quinnipiac University may have screwed their last poll up pretty solidly.

Two new Michigan polls show a tie and D+1. Remains D>40 with a tossup call.

Version: 5

It's a rare occasion when I ignore a recent poll in favour of another, but the latest Quinnipiac poll out of Florida smells a little fishy. The problem is not the partisan breakdown (which is a few more Republicans than Democrats) or anything of that sort, but the strange jump for the Democrats.

At the end of March, Mason-Dixon (the only polling company that matters) said that the Republicans had a 16-point advantage over the Democrats. Now, suddenly, the Democrats lead by 2 points? I don't buy it. Besides, the number of undecideds here (24%) is ridiculous.

Florida remains R>50, but out of deference for Quinnipiac's generally reasonable record, I'll put it to a toss-up.

EDIT: A few other changes, as well. Corrected MA. Nothing new.

Version: 4

Gonzales Research's poll today shows Maryland as a Democratic pick-up, with both O'Malley and Duncan leading Ehrlich. I tend to trust the well-established Gonzales Research a bit more than the recently erratic Rasmussen. The race is still quite unclear.

Version: 3

The sole change in this update is to flip California from D>40 to R>50, per the latest Rasmussen poll. It is a thoroughly impressive tell that Schwarzenegger is able to lead in a state like California despite having still-mediocre approval ratings. Angelides and Westly are evidently quite awful candidates. Angelides' numbers are especially bad. If this poll is anywhere near spot-on (which, based on Rasmussen's recently schizophrenic performance, is not necessarily a certainty), Angelides' 13-point deficit is especially horrible. It is hard to imagine that barely-known Angelides is less popular than Schwarzenegger, but apparently California voters will vote for Arnold even while disapproving of him.

Version: 2

Updated Oregon. Kulongoski's horrible approval ratings are probably, despite what some recent polling may say, enough to seriously endanger him, even against a weak candidate like Mannix. Westlund will also cause serious problems.

Also changed Wyoming to >50. The original >60 was accidental.

Version: 1

This is the first prediction, so there is not much to say (yet). I am running entirely blind in Alaska and a number of other states. Come on, Mason-Dixon!

Version History

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Prediction Score States Percent Total Accuracy Ver #D Rank
P 2008 President 52/56 45/56 97/112 86.6% pie 13 1 55T
P 2007 Governor 3/3 3/3 6/6 100.0% pie 4 160 1T
P 2006 U.S. Senate 33/33 24/33 57/66 86.4% pie 14 0 20T
P 2006 Governor 35/36 30/36 65/72 90.3% pie 17 1 1T
P 2004 President 54/56 48/56 102/112 91.1% pie 7 2 1T
Aggregate Predictions 177/184 150/184 327/368 88.9% pie

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